The SME INVEST Programme – changes and simplifications

30. April 2020

Government Decision no. 326/2020, published in the Official Gazette no. 339 on 27 April 2020, modifies the methodological norms for the application of GEO no. 110/2017 on the Programme to Support Small and Medium Sized Enterprises – SME INVEST.

From now on, small and medium sized enterprises can cumulate loans or credit lines to finance working capital with investment loans up to a limit of RON 10,000,000.

It is also expressly stipulated that the state aid is to be used to cover the following:

  • the payment of interest due by beneficiaries of the Programme by 31 December 2020
  • the full amount of the management fee
  • the risk commission due for the entire duration of the loan guaranteed under the Programme.

An obligation on the National Credit Guarantee Fund for SMEs to calculate the risk commission has also been introduced, as well as the possibility of extending the initially contracted loan, in addition to the possibility of increasing it (the only available option until now).

The new legislation also stipulates that legal immovable and/or movable mortgages on assets financed by loans established in favour of the Romanian state, as represented by the Ministry of Public Finance, and in favour of the credit institution, will have first rank for the entire period of validity of the guarantee or until the moment payment of the guarantee is requested by the credit institution.

The minimis declaration has also been removed from the list of required documents, meaning that it no longer needs to be submitted when applying for state aid.

With regard to the beneficiary’s affidavit, it must transpire form this that:

  • the conditions for the awarding of state aid in the form of a grant have been met
  • the eligibility criteria as provided for under art. 3 (1) letters a), b) and e) of GEO no. 110/2017 have also been met

In addition, as a result of these new amendments, legal immovable and/or movable mortgages on assets financed by loans, as well as real movable mortgages constituted on the collateral deposit are exempted from forced execution procedures in the event of the non-repayment of loans on time.

Therefore, the competent fiscal bodies of the National Agency for Fiscal Administration will not be able to begin the forced execution of beneficiaries for the non-repayment of guaranteed loans on time.

Source: Government Decision no. 326/2020 amending and supplementing Government Decision no. 282/2020 to approve the methodological norms for the application of Government Emergency Ordinance no. 110/2017 on the Programme to Support Small and Medium Sized Enterprises – SME INVEST ROMANIA, published in the Official Gazette no. 339 on 27 April 2020.

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