28 September 2021
The EFTA Surveillance Authority (ESA) announced on 21 September 2021 that it has approved the renewal of temporary amendments to Norway's tax refund scheme for seafarers to offset the impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic.
COVID-19 pandemic: ESA approves renewal of temporary amendments to Norwegian tax refund scheme for seafarers
The EFTA Surveillance Authority has today approved the renewal of temporary amendments to a Norwegian aid scheme granting tax refunds to shipping companies aimed at off-setting the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The scheme, which initially came into force in 2016 and is set to run until 2026, allows shipping companies to get refunds for taxes and social-security contributions paid for seafarers working on ships registered in Norway.
Those amendments aimed to ensure that companies could continue their maritime transport activities during the COVID-19 pandemic by reducing the costs for shipping companies employing EEA nationals on vessels registered in Norway. The amendments temporarily lifted ceilings in the scheme that would otherwise limit refunds of taxes and social security contributions paid for EEA seafarers in:
By ESA's decision today, these amendments have been extended to also cover activity in July and August 2021, entailing an estimated NOK 90 million (EUR 8.8m) increase in budgeted refunds.
ESA's decision can be found here.
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