Grants and Incentives Program Updates: April 2015
Global developments affecting research and development
This monthly publication provides updates/summary of the latest global developments affecting research and development, US manufacturing and production activities, employment activities, real estate and capital investment, and sustainability initiatives. More than 50 countries offer specific tax incentives, and this newsletter focuses on identifying and outlining what could be the right incentives for your organization.
ECSEL JU (Electronics Components and Systems for European Leadership - Joint Undertaking)
Funding is available for research, development and innovation projects with unparalleled systemic and strategic impact for smart, sustainable and inclusive economic growth. The program can support public bodies, private commercial organizations and private non-commercial organizations (including NGOs).
Key applications include: smart mobility, smart society, smart energy, smart health and smart production. Essential capabilities include: semiconductor process equipment materials, design technology, cyber-physical systems and smart systems integration.
Projects are expected to last for two to four years. Funding rates per project vary according to country and type of action.
This arrangement is aimed at R&D activities which develop digital and application-oriented solutions for digital working environments that underline positive aspects of innovative approaches for work-system design, including:
- Digitization of work leading to social innovation
- Sharing economy, mobile and cloud computing as a trigger for innovations in the working environment
- Ergonomic and health-promoting work-system design in the digital age
- Interdisciplinary cooperative projects consisting of at least one scientific and one industry partner, participation of SMEs highly recommended
ICT/all industry sectors
Detecting and solving cyber-security incidents
Funding of research and development activities focusing on techniques to:
- Detect IT attacks especially through anomaly analysis and to
- Solve IT incidents using innovative methods of IT forensics in complex and dynamic IT infrastructure
E-Mobility–value chain positioning (ELEKTRO POWER II)
Grants for R&D projects which strengthen the value chain for electric mobility solutions from a macro/industrial political perspective focusing on:
- An integrated supply chain to ensure the efficient, flexible, robust, reliable and scalable production of electric vehicles
- Secure and protected data communication when charging, metering and billing electric vehicles
- Effective use of electric vehicles to stabilize the electric power grid
- Inductive charging systems in publicly accessible areas
- Joint projects of a maximum of five applicants with at least one German subsidiary covering the entire value chain; participation of at least one SME required
Fast track (Polish: Szybka Ścieżka)
Support for projects that include industrial research and/or development works which fall within the National Smart Specializations (healthy society, agri-food, forestry-timber and environmental bioeconomy, sustainable energy, natural resources and waste management, innovative technologies and industrial processes, and creative technologies). Projects from large enterprises must also include cooperation with an SME/research entity/NGO.
The aim of the program is to enhance the transfer of research results to the economy (commercialization of research results) by supporting development works including the development of new technology and testing it on a demonstration scale. The project must fall within the National Smart Specializations and as for projects of large enterprises they must also include cooperation with an SME/research entity/NGO.
Portugal 2020–business innovation and entrepreneurship
Support projects promoted by non SME or SME in all economic activities, particularly those that aim at the production of tradable and exportable goods and services and that fulfil the following objectives:
- Strengthen non SME and SME investments in innovative activities
- Contribute to the internationalization of the Portuguese economy, creation of qualified employment as well as the spill over effect on SME
- And promotes qualified and creative entrepreneurship
Portugal 2020–contractual regime for investment
Support projects of all economic activities, in particular those that aim at the production of tradable and exportable goods and services, namely:
- Special interest projects - large projects with eligible expenditure exceeding EUR25 million and of special interest for the development, diversification and internationalization of the Portuguese economy
- Strategic interest projects - projects of strategic importance for national or regional economy.
Incentives for Rechnology Research and Development (contractual regime)
Supports Technology Research and Development (TR&D) projects promoted by companies with the following conditions:
- TR&D projects with an eligible investment amount of at least €10 million and of special interest for the development, diversification and internationalization of the Portuguese economy
- TR&D projects recognized by the Portuguese government as of strategic interest (irrespective of the eligible investment amount)
Enhancing user experience in retail
Innovate UK has launched a new funding competition for businesses, data scientists and designers to explore ways in which knowledge and insights gained from analysis of personal data can be used to enhance the user experience for customers, while creating commercial gains for retailers.
- Projects must be collaborative and led by a business
- Each consortium must include at least two organizations
- Projects are expected to involve mainly industrial research with up to 50 percent funding of project costs for large companies and up to 60 percent for small and medium-sized companies (SMEs)
- Projects should last between one and two years and should range in size from total costs of £400,000 to £1 million, although projects outside this range may be considered
Budget announcements (R&D)
The UK budget was held on March 18, 2015 and the government continued to pledge its support to incentivizing innovation. Measures announced to further boost R&D activity in the UK are an increase in the rate of relief, both for SMEs and large companies, as well as new guidance aimed at smaller companies to raise awareness and access to the relief.
The super deduction rate will increase from 225 percent to 230 percent of qualifying revenue expenditure for SMEs for expenditure incurred on or after April 1, 2015. Coupled with the change in the main corporation tax rate to 20 percent, the relief now reduces the corporation tax liability of an SME by up to 26 percent of the R&D spend. Loss making SMEs can claim a repayable cash credit. From April 1, 2015, this is worth up to 33.35 percent of R&D revenue expenditure. Likewise, from April 1, 2015, the R&D expenditure credit (RDEC) rate will increase from 10 percent to 11 percent of qualifying revenue expenditure for large companies. This results in a net benefit of 8.8 percent of the R&D spend for companies submitting an R&D claim under this regime. This benefit will either reduce the company’s corporation tax liability (and in some cases other tax liabilities due to HMRC) or, for loss making companies, is available as a repayable tax credit.
R&D access for small business
The UK government continues to focus on increasing awareness of R&D tax relief amongst smaller businesses. After a period of consultation, it was announced that new guidance and measures will be introduced in the summer of 2015. These will include the introduction of a voluntary advance assurance scheme for smaller businesses making their first R&D claim, a reduction in the time taken to process a claim for such companies from 2016 and a publicity campaign to increase awareness of the relief.
One further announcement was a new restriction on the consumable expenditure that qualifies for relief, which is applicable to all R&D schemes. From April 1, 2015, the UK government will restrict the cost of materials which are incorporated into products which are sold. The impact of these changes will be different for different industry sectors depending on how prototypes and the output from trials are used.
It is estimated that, when taken together, the above measures will cost the Treasury an estimated net £80m in further support for R&D by April 2020.
For more information
For more information on any of the programs listed above, please contact the in-country representative or your usual contact.
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