“In this case, economic aid is also employment aid,” said Werner Kogler this morning at a press conference on the details of the new economic aid. These should be relatively targeted, paid out quickly and ultimately “generous”.
“Basically, a crisis like this is about saving and helping on the one hand, then bridging it and finally ‘investing out’ again,” Kogler continued. It is important to support and relieve: “We are setting real standards with the stimulus packages, which are very much about modernization. The investment bonus is a complete success. Kogler: “It’s not just about striving, it’s also about survival”. They want to save the company – and help “relatively purposefully, quickly and ultimately generously”.
Fixed cost grant II is coming
In an EU comparison, it is a “generous support”. The diversity of the corporate structure should be preserved. Kogler. “For all of them, we try to find precisely fitting instruments.” That is why there are different processing bodies and different tools. That has proven itself: “The tax deferrals of the SVA have had a very big effect, as well as credit deferrals” – all of this helps, explained Kogler.
The fixed cost grant II should bring similar successes. “This is about him [der Fixkostenzuschuss, Anm.] is generous and covers a longer period. It is available to everyone, it is not a loan that has to be repaid. ”However, there are not only changes in time, up to 100 percent of the fixed costs can also be reimbursed. For this purpose, the calculation basis will be massively expanded. And: dividend payments and bonus payments are still not possible or restricted, according to Kogler.
The “special advantage” of the fixed cost grant II is the “quick application and payment”. In addition, there is the extended revenue replacement, as known, staggered with 20, 40 and 60 percent. That is a “relatively sophisticated model,” explains Kogler. “We want to save companies”.
Two variants of the fixed cost subsidy
Finance Minister Blümel then went into detail: So far there have been around 42,000 applications for fixed cost grant I. For the fixed cost grant II, talks were held with the business community about what could be improved. There were also talks with the European Commission, albeit with “massive differences of opinion”. Ultimately, a two-pillar model was agreed “in over 40 negotiation rounds”: Variant 1 is limited to 800,000 euros and can be requested from this afternoon (23/11/2020). However, 100 percent loans and state subsidies are offset. It is permitted to include personnel costs that are necessary for minimum operation. The calculations are overall “much more generous”. For small businesses with an annual turnover of up to 120,000 euros, there is a flat rate of 30 percent of the lost turnover.
Variant 2 is new: It is based on an EU directive from October. “Since Friday there has been permission to apply for fixed cost subsidies under the extended aid framework. The EU framework is valid for up to three million euros, ”said Blümel. Germany and Austria would be the first countries to draft an aid package on this basis, and the technical implementation is currently being developed. In variant 2, however, the difference between fixed costs and operating profit is used as the assessment basis. Strictly speaking, the mentioned variant will “according to the specifications of the Commission not be a fixed cost subsidy, but a compensation for losses”, it also says from the Ministry of Finance.
Losses that occur in periods up to June 30, 2021 can either be forecast in advance or announced in retrospect to a certain extent. However, this information about the loss must be confirmed by a tax advisor. According to Blümel, applications should be submitted in December. The fixed cost grant II can be used for more than three times as long as the fixed cost grant I, namely max. 9.5 instead of 3 months can be requested.
Sales replacement can be requested from the afternoon
The revenue replacement should also be requested from this afternoon. Body-hugging services would receive 80 percent of sales from the comparable period. In retail there are differentiations, “what is different is to be treated differently,” said Blümel. But it is a “just and fair” solution. Depending on the industry, the retail sector receives 20, 40 or 60 percent sales compensation. Three criteria would apply for this: the gross profit of the industry, any catch-up effects after the lockdown and the perishability of the goods. Blümel: “For example, that would mean up to 60 percent sales compensation for a flower shop, as well as for shoes or leather goods or clothing. In the case of building supplies or metal goods, the sales replacement is up to 40 percent, in the vehicle trade up to 20 percent. “
+++ Tax deferrals should give companies a respite until March – but is that enough? +++