24th April 2020

Malta Enterprise has, in recent days, launched / extended a number of other measures intended to counter the economic impact of COVID-19 on a number of different levels.

We are by this present flagging the ones which are currently available, briefly described by Malta Enterprise as follows:

Business Development and Continuity Scheme

The Business Development & Continuity Scheme is intended to facilitate projects that are expected to contribute to the regional development of Malta and to support existing undertakings sustain operations during restructuring.  The Scheme may support various activities such as the initial development phase of undertakings establishing an operational base in Malta, expansion projects, consolidation of activities and the reorganisation of activities. Supported initiatives should lead to the development of new business or to ensuring the continuity of current operations. The support shall be primarily awarded in the form of tax credits yet the Corporation may approve that the support is provided in full or partially as a cash grant.

Skills Development Scheme

The scheme supports businesses to provide training to develop and update the skills and knowledge of their workforce when such training is not legally mandatory for the operation of the business.   Through the training it is envisaged that assisted undertakings will upgrade skills of employees, address skills shortages, facilitate re-skilling, tackle skill mismatches and work towards developing a knowledge-based workforce.  In principle the aid shall be granted in the form of a tax credit however the Corporation may consider and approve that the aid is awarded as a cash grant in respect to training requirements directly related to particular activities.

Business Advisory Services

The Business Advisory Scheme is designed to support business undertaking access advisory services to address specific circumstances. The scheme is intended to help entrepreneurs, managers and business owners in formulating business strategies to ensure sustainability and growth.  Beneficiaries will receive a Business Advisory Voucher (valid for 6 months) which can be used to pay for an advisor or consultant to assist in addressing specific difficulties or development initiatives within the business endeavour. The voucher has a monetary value of up to €500 with a minimum of 5 hours of advisory services.

Family Business Support Services

The scope of this measure is to support the development of Family Businesses in building internal capacities and supporting them in the transfer of their business activity.  The support provides advisory during business transition and access to specific training deemed beneficial in facilitating the growth of Family Businesses. Beneficiaries must be registered as Family Business.

Assistance on Mergers and Divisions (managed by Commissioner for Revenue)

Businesses may need to consolidate, reorganise or in some cases even merge with other organisations in order to survive and be better prepared to face a post-Covid business environment. In that case one can submit a request for ruling to the Office of the Commissioner for Revenue, so as to ensure that capital gains taxes and stamp duty are not paid in cases where such reorganisations are carried out for bona fide reasons. Rulings need to be in conformity with the Rulings (Income Tax and Duty Treatment of Mergers and Divisions) Rules S.L. 123.140 and have to be approved by the Commissioner for Revenue.

How can we help?

We are monitoring developments in this regard and will provide updates as more information becomes available. Meanwhile, should you require any assistance relative to how your business may benefit from the previously announced Teleworking Scheme, the Covid-19 Wage Supplement measure, Malta’s Financial Aid package generally and the Malta Enterprise support measures, please do not hesitate to reach out to us personally.

For more information, please contact Dr. Rosanne Bonnici, Tax Partner, on rosanne.bonnici@fenlex.com.