Royal Decree Law 35/2020, of 22 December, of urgent measures to support the tourist industry, hotel and trade and tax matters

Yesterday the BOE published Royal Decree-Law 35/2020 of 22 December, with measures to support the tourism, hotel and catering and commercial sectors valued at 4.22 billion euros.

 Below is a brief summary of the main measures:

         

Reduction in the rent of premises

Both SMEs and self-employed people who have rented premises can benefit. There are various options depending on whether they are large or small property owners.

In the case of large holders, it provides for an automatic 50% reduction in the rental payments for premises occupied by SMEs or self-employed workers in these sectors during the State of Alarm, which will be in force until May, provided that there has not been an agreement to cancel or reduce the rent. Another option will be to agree to a moratorium on payment without penalties or interest, which could be extended to four months after the end of the State of Alarm or its extensions, if any. The amounts would be paid during the two years following the end of this moratorium.

For small owners, tax incentives will be offered, such as a deduction from the income tax for the reduction in the price of the rent that is agreed. If he forgives 100% of the amount, the owner will be able to deduct the equivalent of that amount in his declaration.

 

New section ICO

Another of the measures envisaged relates to access to liquidity. A new tranche of 500 million in ICO liquidity for SMEs and the self-employed in these sectors with a 90% state guarantee. In the case of travel agencies, tour operators and reservation services, they will be able to use these funds to return reservations that had to be cancelled due to the pandemic. New deadlines have also been approved for the repayment of the amount and interest on loans:

For the consumer goods, trade, tourism, leisure and culture sector: extension of the maximum grace period from 1 to 2 years and an extension of the repayment period by a further three years (up to a maximum of 8).

This is in addition to the measure already approved in November to extend by one year the grace period for loans guaranteed by the ICO and by the mutual guarantee societies. 

 

Social exemptions

In the area of employment, the decree includes an extension of the “ultra-protected” sectors in terms of temporary employment regulation (ERTE) files, according to the regulations in force between 1 September and 31 January. This means that the possibility of carrying out a temporary employment regulation (ERTE) with a reduction of 85% in employer contributions (if the company has fewer than 50 employees) and 75% (if it has more than 50 employees) during the months of December and January is extended to the wholesale beverage trade, restaurants, beverage establishments, botanical parks, zoos and nature reserves. 

 In addition, the 50% discount on employer contributions for permanent, discontinuous workers in companies in the tourism, commerce and hotel and restaurant sector has been extended from April to October 2021, provided that they are linked to the tourism sector. Workers who have exhausted their contributory unemployment benefit, unemployment allowance or active reinsertion income between 14 March and 30 June 2020, may apply for special unemployment benefit during the additional period of one month from the publication of the Royal Decree-Law just approved by the Council of Ministers.

 

Tax deferrals and reductions

Tax obligations may be deferred for six months, with a three-month grace period, upon request, for tax debts corresponding to declarations, settlements and self-assessments the period for presentation and payment of which ends between 1 April and 30 April 2021, and which reach a maximum of 30,000 euros. Therefore, neither SMEs nor self-employed workers will have to pay in April the taxes corresponding to the first quarter of 2021 and they will be able to defer them until October. Also, in general, a reduction will be applied to the net yield in objective estimation (IRPF) and quota of the simplified regime (VAT) from the current 5% to 20%.

 In the case of hotels, trade and tourism, the reduction in taxation by module will reach 35% and will also apply to taxation under the simplified VAT regime. This measure will apply to the fourth instalment payment in 2020 and the first in 2021.

 In addition, the tax exemption on meal vouchers will also be extended to teleworking, for home orders made in this context.

 

Social security contributions

Deferral of accrued quotas between December 2020 and February 2021 for companies. For the self-employed it will be between January 2020 and March 2021, with an interest rate of 0.5%.

 

New developments in the ERTE

 

The ERTE are extended by force majeure from CNAE 5610 (restaurants and food stands); CNAE 5630 (beverage establishments), CNAE 4634 (wholesale trade in beverages), CNAE 9104 (activities of the botanical gardens, zoos and nature reserves) and CNAE 9200 (gambling and betting activities). They are therefore exempt from paying social security contributions as follows: 

 If the company has fewer than 50 workers on 29 February 2020: 85% of the company contribution due in December 2020 and January 2021.

If the company has more than 50 employees on 29 February 2020: 75% of the employer’s contribution accrued in December 2020 and January 2021. 

 

For more information you can consult the following links from the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Tourism : MINCETUR and REINFORCEMENT PLAN

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