Finance Minister Florin Citu announced the start, this Friday, of SME Invest – the most important program for the support of Romania’s small and medium-sized enterprises in the last 30 years, with over 40,000 SMEs expected to access it.
“The first applications can be submitted on Friday, April 17, when the entire system will be up and running,” Florin Citu said.
The program unfolds under a 3.1 billion euro state aid scheme approved by the European Commission under the State aid Temporary Framework. “The banks have requested a ceiling amount even higher than 15 billion lei, so the interest in this scheme is much higher than what we had foreseen. We are flexible, when the ceiling is reached we’ll see how we’ll supplement it,” Citu said.
Premier Ludovic Orban added that 750 million euros could be made available in support for SMEs, and that the instruments that will complement the already adopted measures for the companies’ working and investment capital must be precisely tailored to the needs of the businesses.
Referring to the loan forbearance measure, FinMin Citu said that a portal is available to the citizens, where they can write if they face difficulties in having their loan instalments deferred, but that as a rule, this can be done via SMS, which is a positive sign of streamlined procedures.
Regarding the VAT refunding during the emergency period, the Finance Minister said that he might announce on Thursday “zero days” of due refunds, something “that has never happened in recent history,” as he put it.
Citu added that the computerization of the National Tax Administration Agency (ANAF) continues. “Tests are being conducted for the software that links the cash register to ANAF. I hope that we’ll have the electronic invoicing system implemented in Romania by October 1, by a model inspired from the Italian system. The ANAF workers will be able to communicate with the cash registers via SMS,” he said, according to Agerpres.