➢ From the companies (21.03.2019)
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The Law on financial support of investments, as part of the Economic Growth Plan, was adopted in May 2018, in the direction of supporting the successful production business entities that have positive financial results and increase the number of employees.

After a period of less than a year since the Law has entered into force, it achieved the following objectives:

- a serious possibility was introduced for a financial support to be provided to the domestic companies, that now, apart from the foreign direct investors, have equal conditions of doing business and equal treatment on the market;
- support of the production and exports was provided with the objective to increase the competitiveness of all economic entities regardless of their size or origin of the capital, and all of this is done in order to increase the economic activities and to achieve a higher level of growth of the economy as a whole.

The Economic Chamber of Macedonia and its members supported the adoption of the Law, but they also had concrete proposals so that the measures can be used to a larger extent and to achieve the objective for which they were set. Part of these proposals largely referred to the strictly set criteria according to which the users can become beneficiaries of the financial support are taken into consideration and are part of the draft changes and amendments to the Law that were presented by the Government of the Republic of North Macedonia at a public discussion. Apart from the liberalization of the conditions, the deadline for delivering applications is prolonged, while the scope of the entities that can use the benefits of the measures are extended, the ITC sector is also included, as well as the companies that have a plan to perform a production activity. The number of about 100 companies, most of them members of the Economic Chamber of Macedonia, that, last year used the support via the Law shows that there is a significant interest and need for state financial assistance for the investment processes of the companies.

In conditions when the companies have plans for growth and development, and in the event of more severe competition at the foreign markets, the support given to the development of the industry is an unavoidable process, as well as in other countries, in order to achieve better economic effects and increased participation of the export and investments in the GDP of the country.

The draft changes to the Law on financial support of the investments, when adopted at the session of the Government, will be submitted to the Assembly of the Republic of North Macedonia, where it is expected to be adopted by the end of March, so that the proposed changes can be put into function, and until then the companies will have the possibilities to review it and give comments on it.

At the end of the day, it is a fact that not a single legal solution is ideal. There is always room for another draft solution to be prepared that would be more acceptable for one side or for the other, even if that includes only minor modifications. But, it should be highlighted that the success of the measures and the satisfaction of the business is only possible only if measures are adopted by the state in the creation of which the business community is included. 

Biljana Peeva-Gjurikj
acting Executive Director of the Economic Chamber of Macedonia