During the pandemic Lithuanian Business Support Agency (LVPA) takes over uncharacteristic roles which are necessary helping businesses to survive a difficult period of time.
LVPA resources were successfully used while evaluating companies’ eligibility for support administered by ministries of economics and innovation and finance – projects called Subsidies to microenterprises (active since mid May, 2020) and Compensation of Marketplace Fee (since second half of July, 2020).

According to LVPA director Aurimas Želvys a common task to help businesses in difficult times fosters cooperation among public sector entities, so that processes go smoothly and financial assistance reaches businesses as fast as possible.

“LVPA assistance enabled preventive checks on compliance with legal requirements of European Commission“, − emphasizes Mr Želvys.

While working on these projects, several institutions were involved, and LVPA’s resources were key in providing tax inspectorate with a reliable list of companies, eligible for support.

Funds secured for businesses

LVPA got from competition council lists of companies, which received state assistance, and checked if the assistance to be provided does not exceed maximum allowed amount of state support. 

European Commission requires that the total amount of support to one company should not exceed EUR 200,000 during three last (fiscal) years.

The same requirement goes for microcompanies, but with exception for road transportation, agriculture and fisheries, where support limits are set at EUR 100,000, 20,000 and 30,000 respectively.

According to ministry of economics and innovation, as of December 15, 36,813 microcompanies received subsidies totalling EUR 99.3 m, and 5,699 traders received compensations for marketplace fee, amounting EUR 1.7 m.

For a smooth start

Currently ministry of economics and innovation works with state tax inspectorate on new project Subsidies to SMEs affected by COVID-19. Planned budget is EUR 150 m, preliminary start of project – beginning of the next year.

According to LVPA director, while implementing similar compensatory projects to help businesses to overcome challenges of pandemic, it is of utmost importance that smooth preparations to provide assistance to businesses are in place and to risks are managed properly.

„The real challenge is preparatory work with data from different public sector entities, while evaluating companies according to requirements of European Commission, therefore in the future it is necessary to move from excel spreadsheets to management of data digitization, if we want to provide support to businesses fast“, − claims Mr Želvys.

According to LVPA director, it is very important to reduce administrative burden for the applicants.

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