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Frequently Asked Questions

IRC taxpayers resident in Portugal whose main business is of an agricultural, industrial, commercial or services nature and non-residents with a permanent establishment in that territory, who have incurred R&D expenses and who have been recognised by the Agência Nacional de Inovação, S. A. as being of good repute in terms of research and development. Agência Nacional de Inovação, S. A.

  • R&D expenses are not reimbursed outright
  • The taxable profit is not determined through indirect methods
  • Its tax and social security payments must be in order

The period for submitting applications to SIFIDE II runs, at the Agência Nacional de Inovação, until the end of the 5th month of the year following that of the tax year. Agência Nacional de Inovação

Thus, for companies whose tax year coincides with the calendar year, the deadline for applications for this programme is normally 31 May.(*)

(*) By joint order issued by the Ministry of Economy and Digital Transition, the Ministry of Science, Technology and Higher Education, and the Ministry of Finance, dated 3 May 2021, the deadline for submission of applications to SIFIDE for the tax year 2020 has been extended and can be made until 30 June 2021.

What’s the support?

Deduction to the IRC collection and up to its competition, of the amount corresponding to R&D expenses in the part that has not been subject to a non-refundable State financial contribution, carried out in the tax periods beginning between 1 January 2014 and 31 December 2025, at a double percentage:

  • Base Rate – on the amount of total expenditure on R&D in the current year – 32.5%.
  • Incremental Rate  – 50% of the increase in expenditure in relation to the average of the two previous financial years (maximum of €1,500,000.00).

Note: In the case of SMEs that have been in business for less than two years and have not benefited from the Incremental Rate, a surcharge of 15% is applied to the Base Rate (47.5%).

In case it is not possible to deduct the total amount of the benefit calculated, due to insufficient collection, the remaining amount will remain as a tax credit, which can be deducted until the eighth year following. (*)
(*) – Under the terms of Law 21/2021, of 20 April, the counting of the time limit for the deduction of taxable income provided for in no. 4 of article 38 of the IRC Code is suspended during the 2020 tax period and during the following tax period. Under the terms of the same law, the effects of this extraordinary measure will be retroactive to 1 January 2020. – This means that the tax benefits assessed in 2020 and 2021 under SIFIDE may remain in tax credit for a period of 10 years.

Main indicators SIFIDE

These are data from 2019, it is an exercise that is still under evaluation and that way there are a large number of applications that are waiting for approval. You can consult all the updated data on the official website of the National Innovation Agency, S.A.

Applications received

2375

Applications received

Declared investment in r&d (million euros)

1277.8

Declared investment in r&d (million euros)

Applications approved

1787

Applications approved

Investment in r&d calculated (million euros)

539.3

Investment in r&d calculated (million euros)

Tax credit allocated (million euros)

336.1

Tax credit allocated (million euros)

Eligible expenditure

  • Expenditure on staff directly involved in R&D activities and with a minimum academic qualification of level 4 of the National Qualifications Framework (NQF), accounted for as remuneration, wages or salaries, for the financial year
  • Operating expenses, up to a maximum of 55% of expenses with staff with minimum academic qualifications of level 4 of the National Qualifications Framework (QNQ) directly involved in R&D tasks
  • Purchases of tangible fixed assets, with the exception of buildings and land, provided they are newly created or acquired and directly allocated to R&D activities
  • Expenses related to contracting R&D activities with public bodies or entities benefiting from the status of public utility or entities whose suitability in terms of research and development is recognised by the National Innovation Agency, SA.
  • Expenses related to the participation of directors and managers in the management of R&D institutions
  • Stakes in the capital of R&D institutions and contributions to investment funds, public or private, aimed at financing companies dedicated mainly to R&D, including financing the valorisation of their results, whose suitability in the area of research and development is recognised by the National Innovation Agency, S. A.
  • Patent registration and maintenance costs
  • Expenses related to the acquisition of patents predominantly for R&D activities (SMEs only)
  • R&D audit costs
  • Expenses for demonstration activities arising from supported R&D projects and that have been previously reported to the National Innovation Agency, S. A.
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