FIAA Board of Directors discusses how to cope and be effective in the Covid-19 situation during the Zoom Board Meetings

FIAA Board of Directors discusses how to cope and be effective in the Covid-19 situation during the Zoom Board Meetings

May 20, 2020
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The Board of FIAA has been following carefully the economic situation created by the pandemic and has tried to bring out main industry concerns of the members and addressed them to the authorities. Several virtual meetings have been conducted during April and May and continuous communication has been kept with the members directly by the Chairman. The Chairman of FIAA has also sent officially the main concerns on the main industries and raised the importance of gradual Opening of the economy.

The Board of FIAA has stressed out the importance of sectoral analysis and the continuity of communication, not only with the Members, but also with the Authorities. As such, it was sent a letter to the authorities with feedback from FIAA members.

Some of the issues identified in consultation with our Members have been the following:

  1. Suggest for increasing the volume of the guarantee for liquidity capital to other industries (except Tourism, production and facon).
  2. Bring up again the need for speeding up VAT Reimbursement, especially for those industries which are in immediate need for liquidity and the state owns to them big amounts of VAT for a long time.
  3. Suspend VAT payments in respect to the overdue invoices; in this moment, the State cannot ask the private companies to anticipate money that the latter have not received yet. Business cannot finance the State, the State should help the business.
  4. Postpone the relevant tax payment to all sectors that were affected by the crisis. In particular Mining, Oil and Gas, and related companies, given the fact that these companies have suspended/slowed operation due to the lack of demand and low prices in the global markets.
  5. Ask for transparency on the supporting schemes for employees in different sectors in Albania for those receiving reduced salaries or no salaries at all, and come up with a plan supporting consultancy companies as well. The professional services have to also be considered. The Government has to come up with a financial plan for this category (law firms, accounting firms, general consulting firms, notaries, bailiffs, etc.)
  6. Reduce bureaucracy when dealing with administration, double taxation procedures and requirements to foreign customers when outsourcing their activities in Albania.
  7. Apply No penalties/interest charges for late payments on taxes and maybe arranging settlement agreement between business and tax authorities for late payments.“ and “No collateral requests from banks in case of loan application”.
  8. Coordinate better with local authorities and central government in supporting business in rural areas, where are mostly located the extractive industries.
  9. Stimulate the internal consumption by helping SME-s and self-employed (farmers) with very low interest credits to all parts of the chain. This should be done through mechanisms like Agro-Funds/SME-Funds, treated with nearly 0% interest.