News

Support Package
11 May 2020
New economic support package to mitigate COVID-19’s impact is approved

Rui Moreira's proposal to create a Municipal Fund to support investment and economic development has been unanimously approved by the Municipal Executive. It is aimed at startups, micro-enterprises, and SMEs in the city, and also foresees the granting of tax benefits and exemption from the payment of municipal fees to traders and other economic agents. 

These measures, estimated at around 315 thousand euros, reinforce the action of the Municipality of Porto in supporting the economic, business, and commercial sectors of the city affected by the crisis. This package joins other measures, such as the emergency support line for associations, or those that were applied by the municipal companies Domus Social, Porto Vivo, SRU or Águas do Porto.

The first of these concerns the creation of a municipal fund that supports startups, micro-enterprises, and SMEs in the city as a means to respond to the current challenges of the economy, and that contributes, through access to capital or reinforcement of liquidity, so that business and jobs are maintained during and after the current crisis.

Financial resources will be affected by the Municipality, but the Mayor of Porto does not rule out the possibility of the fund integrating "other participants from the private sphere who are willing to participate in this effort to capitalize on the city's economic fabric".

At the same time, consultancy services will be made available in specific areas of support to companies that can help mitigate the effects of the crisis and promote economic recovery, support that will also be provided by InvestPorto, in conjunction with other entities or consultancy companies including specialists in many areas.

A dedicated team will also be created to support contacts with companies, formalize the application processes for the fund and its subsequent monitoring.

With a view to strengthening the support for economic activities proven to be affected by the pandemic phenomenon, in the context of the review of the RIIMMP - Regulation of Exemptions from Municipal Taxes of the Municipality of Porto, to be concluded during the year 2020, "situations of exemption and reduction of Derrama to be launched for the years 2021 and 2022".

 

Tax benefits and exemptions amount to 315 thousand euros 

On the other hand, the second line of support is reflected in the granting of tax benefits to establishments and economic, commercial, and business fabric of the city. According to the calculation, they represent close to 315 thousand euros of dividends that the Municipality will no longer receive.

According to the approved proposal, the total exemption, that is, 100%, is foreseen in the payment of the following municipal fees: the occupation of public space with advertising media; occupation of public space with the installation of awnings, terraces, showcases and displays, chests and machines, flower boxes, containers, grills, carpets; other public domain occupations, such as non-profit events. In the scope of economic activities in the public space, special constructions or installations on the ground or underground are exempt from the payment of municipal taxes, namely temporary constructions or installations due to celebrations or other celebrations, for the exercise of trade; and pavilions, kiosks or other buildings not included in the previous numbers of article 66 of the Municipal Fees Table in force, contained in Annex G-1 of Part G of the Regulatory Code of the Municipality of Porto.

It also advances the exemption from payment of municipal fees and the issuing of a license to operate tourist circuits; tourist developments; the establishment of catering or beverage establishments, the sale of goods, the provision of services or storage; public transport for car hire; provision of restaurant or beverages services with a non-sedentary character, in public space, depending on the area of ​​the facilities and the period of operation.

The return/refund of the annual fees paid in February meanwhile charged, relating to terraces, awnings, advertising media and licenses for operating tourist circuits, as well as those that, other than annual fees, have already been charged with respect to tax facts that occurred after February 29th of this year, following the exemptions previously mentioned.

The exemptions and reimbursements provided for can only benefit establishments and economic agents that have their tax situation regularized before the Municipality.

It is important to highlight that, as mentioned in the proposal voted on today, these supports and exemptions that result in losses of municipal revenue do not jeopardize the municipal budgets of either 2020 or next year.

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