articles | 19 March 2024

House considers reducing fees for Cyprus startups

The House Committee on Energy, Trade, Industry and Tourism this week revisited a proposal aimed at abolishing fees for innovative startups, in a bid to boost innovation and entrepreneurship.

This initiative represents an effort to support startups by reducing financial burdens while ensuring compliance with regulatory standards, thereby fostering a thriving ecosystem for innovation and entrepreneurship. This proposal, initially brought before the Plenary, had its discussion deferred to a later date. Marios Mavrides, a Disy representative and the founder of this proposal highlighted the plight of around 100 small businesses, stating “these are small startups, which are struggling to survive”. 

He drew attention to the financial barriers these startups face, such as the €165 company incorporation fee and the €2,000 fee for converting a private company into a public one, which is essential for accessing funds from the money market. Mavrides argued for the removal of these fees, saying, “That has to go away so they can become public companies so they can find investors,” emphasising the need to eliminate these fees to help startups attract crucial investments. However, the committee clarified that the proposed fee exemption would not cover fines imposed by the Registrar of Companies, thus maintaining a distinction between administrative fees and penalties for regulatory non-compliance.

Kyriakos Hadjiyiannis, the president of the committee and a Disy representative, supported the proposal, noting it as “an incentive for innovative businesses.” Elena Poulli, representing the Deputy Ministry of Research, Innovation and Digital Policy, also backed the proposal, particularly its potential to help innovative businesses find investors. She said, “The Deputy Ministry supports the proposal and especially the provision of the possibility of finding investors for innovative businesses,” highlighting the ministry’s role in certifying innovative companies. This certification, valid for three years, is part of a broader strategy to encourage investment in innovation.

The proposal’s compliance with state aid regulations was also addressed, with a representative from the office of the superintendent of State Aid Control emphasising the need for approval to ensure the aid does not breach selectivity principles. “An aid granted without the approval of the Treasurer is considered illegal,” they said, underlining the importance of adhering to legal standards.


Source: Cyprus Mail

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