Minister of Finance Steingrímur J. Sigfússon presented a ministerial bill on innovative and start-up companies during an investors’ conference, Seed Forum Iceland, on Friday, which will be submitted to parliament in the coming days.
Minister of Finance Steingrímur J. Sigfússon. Photo: Páll Kjartansson.
If passed, companies that fall under the innovation and start-up category can have one fifth of their research and development costs repaid and investors can obtain concessions when buying shares in these companies, Fréttabladid reports.
“This is fabulous news. We have waited for it for many, many years,” commented Hilmar V. Pétursson, CEO of CCP, the company that develops and operates the vastly popular multiplayer online role-playing game EVE Online.
The bill is based on a Norwegian bill on innovation, which was passed in Norway seven years ago. A similar arrangement of repayment and concession is known all around the world. “These are the best measures to support innovation and lead us out of the crisis,” stated Davíd Lúdvíksson at the Federation of Icelandic Industries (SI).
Lúdvíksson said SI had already presented ideas like these a few years ago. However, they never got any further than to the desk of the Finance Minister of the previous government, even though they were likely to increase employment participation and deliver increased income tax to the state treasury.
Click here to read more about innovation in Iceland.