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Private companies to be created within 2 days in Catalonia

The Catalan Government has issued the Bureaucratic Simplification Law, which should speed up the creation of new private businesses. The new bill should make things easier for 75% of new business initiatives, according to the Catalan Minister for Business and Employment, Felip Puig. He explained that entrepreneurs carrying out innocuous or low-risk activities will be able to create a new company and start working within 48 hours, after having signed a responsibility statement, registered the new company and made sure that their premises respect all the regulations. Therefore, it will be the entrepreneurs' responsibility to make sure that the new business respects the legal framework, setting up "a framework of trust" between the entrepreneurs and the Government, said Puig. Once the business activity launches, public bodies may run inspections to make sure everything is in order.

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16 December 2014 08:26 PM

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ACN

Barcelona (ACN).-The Catalan Government has issued the Bureaucratic Simplification Law, which should speed up the creation of most of the new private businesses in Catalonia. The new bill should make things easier for 75% of new business initiatives, according to the Catalan Minister for Business and Employment, Felip Puig. He explained that entrepreneurs carrying out innocuous or low-risk activities will be able to create their new company and start working within 48 hours, after registering the new company, making sure their premises respect all the safety and technical regulations, and having signed a public responsibility statement. Therefore, it will be the entrepreneurs' responsibility to make sure the new business respects all the sector regulations and he or she will not have to wait for public inspections and certificates to be carried out and issued in order to start activities. However, days or weeks after the business activity launches, public bodies may run inspections to make sure everything is in order. According to Puig, this new law sets up "a framework of trust" between the entrepreneurs and the Government, and also establishes "a new paradigm" to launch new businesses in Catalonia. 53,700 new projects each year could benefit from the new bill, saving a total of €68.4 million or €1,273 per business initiative, said Puig.


On Tuesday, the Catalan Government approved "a very important step" to foster entrepreneurship, according to Felip Puig. He highlighted that the new law sets "a new paradigm", since the business launch will be based on the entrepreneurs' word and be their responsibility. Until this reform, the creation of new companies had to wait for the inspections of different municipal and Catalan Government services. This process could often take several weeks. With the Bureaucratic Simplification Law, entrepreneurs will be those in charge of making sure that everything is in order and that they have everything ready to start a business, if they develop innocuous or low-risk activities (75% of the total new businesses).

Saving more than €1,200 per business project

The new measure will apply to companies created within the retail, personal services, administrative services, construction, tourism and catering industries, among others. This means that 75% of the 600,000 existing companies in Catalonia could have benefited from this measure. Currently, 1.5 million people are working in these types of low-risk companies, according to Puig. The Catalan Minister for Business and Employment calculated that 53,700 companies could benefit from the new framework each year. This means that a company could save an average of €1,273 with the new bill. This represents a saving to the private sector of €68.4 million per year.

The Catalan Minister gave the example of a new restaurant occupying less than 500 square metres. Once the new law is approved by the Catalan Parliament, such a business would no longer have to wait for a technical inspection to open its doors. The entrepreneur would only need to register the restaurant at the corresponding mercantile register, hire a technical report and issue a public responsibility statement. Such steps should take less than 48 hours in regular circumstances. A hotel with less than 20 beds should also benefit from the new law, said Puig.

The Catalan Minister emphasised that the new bill represents "an important reduction" of bureaucratic processes, a significant simplification of procedures and greater transparency. Puig recognised that the Anglo-Saxon business launch model had been an inspiration for the new legal framework. The global aim is to reduce obstacles to creating new business projects in order to foster the economy.

An update of the 2011 Omnibus Law

Such an objective was partially achieved through the Omnibus Law approved in 2011 by the Catalan Government to reduce bureaucracy and business regulations. However, it needed an update, acknowledged Puig. Furthermore, it consolidates the single focal point model throughout Catalonia to carry out all the administrative procedures. This means that companies are able to file all their documents and request all the certificates they need through a single public desk, which will then redistribute the queries among the different public bodies and services. Puig added that between 2011 and 2014, this model has already eliminated 78 of the 474 existing procedures.

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  • Felip Puig (right) presenting the Catalan Government's new initiative (by P. Mateos)

  • Felip Puig (right) presenting the Catalan Government's new initiative (by P. Mateos)