please find below the most important amendments to the Italian law-decree 23/2020 (“Liquidity Decree”) introduced under the Italian conversion law 40/2020 (as disclosed in the Italian Official Gazette 143 as of 6 June 2020).
Public guarantees aimed at facilitating the granting of loans to businesses are confirmed.
The grace period of loans granted by banks and financial institutions to businesses with registered office in Italy and guaranteed by SACE S.p.A. is extended to 36 months.
The loans must be used to cover personnel expenses, rental leases or lease payments for business branches, investments or current capital used in production facilities and business operations in Italy, as proven and represented by the legal representative of the business. Limited to no more than 20 percent of the amount granted, the loans may also be used to provide for the payment of loan tranches due or becoming due in the course of the epidemiological emergency period, if repayment is objectively impossible due to the COVID-19 epidemiological crisis.
Furthermore, it is confirmed that the business benefiting from the guarantee itself, as well as any other business having its offices in Italy that belongs to the same group, including businesses under direction and coordination by the same company, must undertake not to approve a distribution of dividends or a re-purchase of shares in 2020. If the above-mentioned businesses already distributed dividends or re-purchased shares at the time of application for the loan, such duty is undertaken by the business for the 12 months following the date of application.
The loan applications must include a statement in lieu of an oath pursuant to section 47 of the Italian legislative decree 445/2000 by the owner of the business or by its legal representative. Thereby, they confirm under their own responsibility, inter alia,:
- that operations have been limited or suspended due to the epidemiological emergency from COVID-19 or due to the effects deriving from the containment and prevention measures adopted during same epidemiological emergency and that before such epidemiological emergency the business was a going concern;
that the loan secured by such guarantee is applied for in order to cover personnel expenses, investments or current capital used in production facilities and business operations located in Italy.