Last Updated on Monday, 13 February, 2023 at 5:41 pm by Andre Camilleri
Government will be extending the existing Rent Subsidy Scheme by doubling the eligible support to €50,000 for eligible companies to rent outside of government industrial areas.
The scheme will see the Malta Enterprise increase its aid from €25,000 to €50,000 per undertaking, Malta Enterprise CEO Kurt Farrugia said on Monday.
During a press conference at Ta’ Mananni in Mqabba, a local microenterprise which distributes local foods, Farrugia gave details on the extension of the rent subsidy scheme, which 27 companies benefited from over the last two years, amounting to an investment of over €600,000.
The renewed scheme widens the list of eligible activities, to help ease the negative impacts brought on by increasing importation costs on companies.
The companies may be supported in the renting of space for their activities. The total aid which may be granted to a single undertaking over a twelve-month period will be capped at €50,000.
The support may be approved for a period of three consecutive years, thus the maximum aid per business would be that of €150,000.
The scheme has also extended the support for a further three years, amounting to six in total, where companies must re-apply, and only if the applicant has not generated a reasonable return but can assure a sustainable business and stable prices thereafter.
The Rent Subsidy Scheme will support undertakings which require industrial space as a temporary or permanent solution to support their business activity.
These include businesses engaged in manufacturing, maintenance, artisanal activities, industrial packaging activities, repairs of motor vehicles, repair of machinery and equipment as well as other industrial activities.
Eligible activities also include commencing business activity, expanding current operations, handling an increase in order, optimising supply chains and engaging in process innovations required to increase efficiency.
An additional activity was added, which is the facilitation of a period of restructuring and consolidation of the business operation.
The aid will be given in the form of a cash grant, or in tax credits, particularly after the three year period, Farrugia said.
The scheme will focus on small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), meaning businesses who employ up to 250 full-time employees.
Farrugia said that the feedback from the scheme, which started in 2020, showed the growing needs of manufacturing companies, particularly with worldwide issues with the supply chain, as well as increases in prices of products due to the pandemic and the war in Ukraine.
Farrugia said that the revision of the scheme will reduce dependency on government industrial land and aid start-ups in their activities.
Minister for Environment, Energy and Enterprise Miriam Dalli said that as logistics and product costs increase, government seeks to aid these companies to remain competitive in their activities.
She said that the aim of the scheme is to help companies meet their commercial challenges due to the increase in logistical costs, providing a space to store their products.