Newsletter February 2017

Legal Updates

Increase in minimum wage

The increase in Minimum Wage was made official in the 29th December 2016 with the publication of the Decree-Law 86-B/2016. The legal diploma stablishes an increasing of 5% for 2017, having the Government observed that the valorisation of the National Minimum Wage “is an instrument with potential to improve life conditions, social cohesion and to promote sustainable economic growth”.

In order to fulfil such objective, the Government, the Employer’s Confederations and the UGT agreed on an increasing from 530 to 557 euro.

The Legal Diploma also applies to the civil service and comes into force in the 1st January 2017


List of tax havens with fewer territories

The Order n. 150/2004, of 13th February, listed the countries, territories and regions with a privileged and clearly more favourable taxation regime.

The Government decided to change this order having in mind the developments with the introduction of antiabuse mechanisms in international taxation, such as the voluntary adhesion of some countries to Enforceable Legal instruments for the automatic exchange of Tax Information, both at the European Union’s and OECD’s level.

The British territories of Jersey and Man Island, and also Uruguay, were excluded from the applicable list. Jersey and Man Island signed an Agreement for Exchange of Information of the Tax Field with Portugal in 2010, and Uruguay executed a Treaty to avoid double taxation and to prevent tax evasion, facts that weighed heavily in such decision.

In a practical level, this decision will have some consequences, such as the non-application of the IRS (personal income tax) and IRC (corporate income tax) high taxation rate (35%) to capital income paid by or to companies with its head offices in those territories


Business Updates

Visa for “Startup” for India

The prime-minister, António Costa, during his official visit to India, announced that the Portuguese government is going to implement a program to facilitate the obtainment of Portuguese visa (“start up” visa) for students, members of scientific and corporate communities of both countries.

This visa will be apply to companies and entrepreneurs who want to start an activity in Portugal, and also to persons with recognised qualifications.

The main objective for granting the visa is to attract qualified workers for the information and technology area, where the growth of companies is limited due to the lack of qualified workers.

This visa will also promote a larger economic and social cooperation between these two countries, having in mind that Portugal and India broke their diplomatic ties for 12 years.


Program Valorize – Opening of financing lines for tourism in the hinterland

The applications to the Line to Support and Valorise the Hinterland Tourism are already opened. This financing program has the objective of supporting the investment in projects with interest to Tourism.

According to the Decree n. 16/2016, the budget for financing these project is of €10.000.000. In the same Decree, there are some examples of projects that could apply to this founding, such as projects to valorise or increase the supply of Cycling & Walking, to valorise the patrimony and the regional endogenous resources, to develop touristic economic activities, to structure programs for touristic roads to the country’s hinterland, and to develop agendas for events with touristic potential.

The financing can amount to 90% of the total expenses value, with the maximum limit of €150.000 in the case of companies and €400.000 in the case of others entities, including the non-profit private bodies. The financing line does not apply only to the private companies, but also to the ones with a public nature. The deadline for the application is 31st December 2017.