Beatriz Barrera and Milagros Luis Brito the president and vice-president respectively of the ZEC (the Canary Islands Special Zone) today gave a presentation in Brussels on the Economic and Fiscal Regime (“REF”) incentive to members of the board presidency of EUROCHAMBRES, representing the national chambers of commerce and industry from 43 countries, 1700 regional and local chambers of commerce, and more than 20 million businesses of which 93% are SMEs. EUROCHAMBRES is one of the pillars of business representation to European institutions. Its goals are to promote European chambers of commerce and industry by encouraging their participation in worthwhile business projects and to promote the chambers’ network by delivering pan-European services by establishing synergies and joint programmes of activity.
The initiative to present the EU-authorised low-tax regime to members of EUROCHAMBRES is the first activity arising from the collaboration agreement signed last February between the ZEC and the Chamber of Commerce of Spain, the aim of which is to promote foreign investment into the Canary Islands. With regard to companies within the ZEC incorporated mainly by foreign capital, it was noted that between the financial years 2012 and 2014, these rose from 34% of companies to 40.4%, reflecting the growing interest from investors from the European Union (Italy and Ireland), Eastern Europe (Russia, Poland and Ukraine) and North America (USA) in operating from the Canary Islands under the favourable conditions provided by this regime.
The role of the Canary Islands
EUROCHAMBRES president, Richard Weber (Germany), said that the Single Market and the Four Fundamental Freedoms upon which it rests (free movement of goods, workers, services and capital) and the system of tax incentives offered by ZEC approved by the European Commission, offer a highly appealing and advantageous legal framework that should be explored by European companies working in any of the business areas covered by the ZEC. To this is added the role that the Canaries play as a Spanish region, its good air and sea connections and unbeatable geostrategic position between three continents.
Beatriz Barrera of the ZEC said that the Canary Islands is looking to attract businesses backed by foreign investors, for whom the islands’ attractive fiscal framework represents an opportunity to internationalise. She said that foreign companies are beginning to view the Canary Islands as a business platform within their map of investments. ”Following the reforms, within the ZEC we now have the ideal instrument for positioning the islands as an international business hub. This regime guarantees legal and economic security for companies and investors," the president of the ZEC said.
Milagros Luis meanwhile said that over the next two years, the ZEC would be explaining the features that make it such a powerful tax tool to capital-issuing markets. “We have a tax regime that is designed to encourage new economic activity in the Canary Islands, that takes advantage of our strong position with its legal safeguards and offers the backdrop of clear growth among nearby African countries," she stressed.
The general secretary of the Spanish Chamber, Carmen de Miguel, welcomed the president and vice-president of the ZEC to the branch of the EU’s Spanish Chamber, where a presentation about the ZEC was also given to a select group of European tax advisers, representatives of European businesses and consultants based in Brussels. Carmen de Miguel stated that this "is an interesting initiative that highlights the work of the network of European Chambers that serve the business community”.
Following this initial contact between the ZEC and Eurochambres, the next goal is to promote the ZEC to potential companies among the major European capitals of the countries that form part of Eurochambres through the national chambers of commerce around Europe and the trade offices of embassies in Spain.
Photo caption: From left to right: president of the ZEC, Beatriz Barrera; president of Eurochambres Richard Weber and vice-president of the ZEC Milagros Luis Brito.
ZEC and Proexca attend ‘Invest in the Canary Islands’ seminar hosted by the Taranto Chamber of Commerce in Italy
ZEC (‘Canary Islands Special Zone’) and Proexca (‘Canary Island Society for Economic Development’) presented the revamped ZEC’s tax advantages along with the islands’ potential as a destination for investment, at Taranto Chamber of Commerce in Italy. The recent overhaul of this incentive incorporates a number of new aspects that make it one of Europe’s most attractive low-tax regimes, as well as making the Canaries one of the best areas for tax opportunities, and helping to position it internationally as a hub for business.
The president of ZEC (the Canary Islands Special Zone), Beatriz Barrera Vera, and the director general of Casa África, Luis Padrón, signed a cooperation agreement on Monday covering the relationship between the two organisations. This relationship is strengthened and deepened in the context of recent changes within ZEC and the fact that it has been approved at national and European level as the preferred vehicle for promoting the economic and social development of the Canary Islands with a view to the continent of Africa. The agreement was signed at Casa Áfrca’s head offices, and attended by the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Ignacio Ybáñez Rubio, who took part in the presentation at Casa África of Real Instituto Elcano’s report “España mirando al Sur” (Spain Looking South).
The president of ZEC (the Canary Islands Special Zone), Beatriz Barrera Vera, and the Undersecretary for Industry, Energy & Tourism and president of OEPM (the Spanish Patent & Trademark Office), Enrique Hernández Bento, have signed a collaboration agreement in Madrid to promote awareness and use of the exclusive rights granted through patent rights, particularly among companies operating under this low-tax regime.
This agreement between the two organisations will enable ZEC companies to benefit from 30% discounts % off the price of technology patent and oversight reports, enabling them to obtain relevant information about technology to support their decision-making (applying for patents, planning and running R&D projects, and so on). OEPM is an autonomous body of the Ministry of Industry, Energy & Tourism. It promotes and supports technological and economic development by providing legal protection for the different types of industrial property by granting patents and utility models (inventions); industrial designs (form creation); trademarks and trade names (distinctive signs); and rights that protect semiconductor product topographies. It also disseminates information relating to the different forms of protecting patent rights.
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- The ZEC and the Spanish Chamber of Commerce encourage foreign investments in the Canary Islands
- New developments in the SCZ in the conference “New Canary Islands REF Scenario” organise by BBVA
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- The Spanish Official Gazette (BOE) publishes the Royal Decree-Law with the amendments to the REF
- The president of the ZEC meets the German Ambassador in Spain