The Lithuanian Business Support Agency (LBSA) [Lithuanian LVPA − Lietuvos Verslo Paramos Agentūra] has completed the evaluation of applications for grant submitted by 8,229 independent and non-independent enterprises affected by Covid-19 for almost EUR 113 million. Applications were accepted until June and the lists of enterprises were submitted for evaluation for a further three weeks.

Under the call for applications for the measure ‘Grants to enterprises affected by Covid-19’, 26,185 applications from independent enterprises were evaluated for a total amount of EUR 68 million, and 2,044 applications from non-independent enterprises were evaluated for a total amount of EUR 44.44 million.

‘The volumes are not small; however, the Agency’s technical capacity and the high competence of its professionals allowed us to promptly assess the compliance of economic operators with the European Commission’s requirements for state aid and other established criteria. It was a big challenge and we coped with it,’ says Aurimas Želvys, Director of the LBSA.

The LBSA professionals developed automatic evaluation criteria and algorithms, carried out the database programming work, and automated the processes of receiving the data from the State Tax Inspectorate (STI) and returning the evaluation results back to the STI.

The applications were evaluated both automatically and manually. The most risky and non-compliant applications that did not pass the precise automatic evaluation criteria and algorithms were directed to the manual check.

A total of 20 professionals from the LBSA worked on the manual evaluation and they evaluated around 1,600 applications from independent companies and 400 applications from non-independent companies.

According to Želvys, by participating in the scheme of providing state aid to the affected companies, the employees of the agency gained even more experience and competencies, and formed a unified evaluation practice which will be used in the future. The process is not over yet, as the LBSA and the STI will have to carry out screening checks until December with the participation of the LBSA professionals.  

The LBSA recalls that the assessment of the eligibility of grant-seeking enterprises is a new and unusual activity that the Agency had to undertake for the first time last year. Then, in cooperation with the STI, 41,692 micro-enterprises were evaluated for EUR 112.5 million under the Covid-19 measure ‘Grants for micro-enterprises’ and 5,699 applications from traders for EUR 1.7 million were evaluated for the measure ‘Compensation of market tax’.

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