The National Parliament of the Republic of Slovenia has recently adopted a proposal for amendments and additions to the Investment Promotion Act. According to the new law, it will be possible to apply under this law before registering a company in Slovenia. This is a step towards de-bureaucratisation and an additional incentive for foreign investors to invest in Slovenia.

The Investment Promotion Act had to be amended mainly to ensure compliance with European aid rules, which were amended in 2023.

Under the new rules, an investor can apply for an investment incentive even before having a company or a branch of a foreign company registered in Slovenia. The condition is that either the company or the branch of the foreign company is registered in Slovenia at the latest at the time the incentive is paid.

In addition, the possibility for a branch of a foreign company established in an EU Member State to receive an incentive is introduced, which means that if a company established in an EU Member State invests in the Republic of Slovenia, it will not be necessary to set up a new company here, but the registration of the branch of the foreign company in the Court Register of the Republic of Slovenia will be sufficient. The possibility of obtaining an incentive for a branch of a foreign company is a novelty added in the light of the guarantee of the fundamental freedoms (free movement of services and capital) applicable between EU Member States. It implies a de-bureaucratisation, thus further encouraging foreign investors to invest in the territory of the Republic of Slovenia.

The Investment Act includes a list of activities for which incentives are not granted under this Act, as they are regulated by other legal bases. The lignite sector and the broadband sector have also been added to this list of activities. The law already did not allow incentives to be granted for the production and distribution of energy, and now incentives will not be granted for energy storage and transmission. In contrast, incentives for shipbuilding and the synthetic fibre industry will now also be eligible under the new law.

Incentives are also now no longer allowed for European Innovation Partnership (EIP) operational group projects in the field of agricultural productivity and sustainability. In addition, the law excludes incentives for aid measures that restrict the beneficiaries’ ability to exploit the results of research, development and innovation in other Member States.

The Act also redefines the rules for the maintenance and retention of documentation related to the granting of incentives under the Act. The Public Agency of the Republic of Slovenia for the Promotion of Investment, Entrepreneurship and Internationalisation (SPIRIT Slovenia) and the Ministry of Economy, Tourism and Sport, as the grantors of the incentives, shall keep records containing the information and additional documentation necessary to establish whether all the conditions laid down in this Act and in European Regulation 651/2014/EU are met. The records shall be kept for 10 years from the date of the grant of the incentive or the date on which the last grant of aid was made under the investment scheme.

The conditions for State aid to be compatible with the functioning of the internal market and competition rules in the EU are laid down in Commission Regulation (EU) No 651/2014 of 17 June 2014 declaring certain categories of aid compatible with the internal market in application of Articles 107 and 108 of the Treaty, as last amended on 23 June 2023.

This European Regulation regulates various forms of aid, including regional aid, aid to small and medium-sized enterprises and aid for research, development and innovation, under which, among other things, aid is granted under the Investment Promotion Act. Amendments to some of the provisions of Regulation 651/2014/EU required the alignment of the Investment Promotion Act. With the adopted amendments, Slovenia has ensured that its national rules on the granting of aid are in line with the European State aid rules.

In the context of the recently adopted amendments to the Investment Promotion Act, which open up new opportunities for foreign investors, SIBIZ d.o.o. is positioning itself as a key partner for companies wishing to take advantage of new opportunities in Slovenia. Understanding the complexities of legislation and bureaucratic procedures is key to successful and efficient investment. That is why SIBIZ d.o.o. offers comprehensive support and a wide range of services for foreign investors, ranging from the initial idea phase to the final realisation of the investment project.

The services offered by SIBIZ d.o.o. include assistance in navigating through the new legislative framework, advice on registering companies or branches of foreign companies in Slovenia, support in preparing and submitting applications for investment incentives, and advice on meeting all the necessary conditions for obtaining incentives. We also provide assistance in establishing contacts with local authorities and institutions and in finding potential local partners.

Our aim is to facilitate the process of investing in Slovenia and reduce bureaucratic obstacles, allowing companies to focus on their core business and take advantage of the opportunities offered by the Slovenian economic environment. With our expertise and experience in the field of investment promotion, SIBIZ d.o.o. ensures that our clients’ investment projects are implemented successfully, efficiently and in compliance with all applicable regulations.

SIBIZ d.o.o. is your reliable partner for investment projects in Slovenia. With our help, you can make the most of the benefits of the amendments to the Investment Promotion Act and expand your business into the Slovenian market.

For more information you can contact us directly: [email protected]