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Are you an international organisation with activity in Barcelona? Check out all the resources available: advice and information for international projects and businesses, online courses and training programmes for professionals and enterprises, and other economic-revival measures.

Financial aid

We are boosting the economy

The Barcelona City Council is mobilising resources intended for the businesses, shops and self-employed individuals that currently need them in the form of grants, subsidies or funding so they can maintain their economic activity, protect jobs and, at the same time, promote their transformation to adapt to the Barcelona of the future.

  • ‘Crea Feina Plus’ is a subsidy for companies in the Barcelona metropolitan area who wish to hire unemployed individuals, especially those who have a more difficult time finding work.  All full-time work contracts created for individuals who are registered as unemployed and living in the city will receive a grant of €5,000. In the case of people under 30 years of age, over 45 or women, this grant increases to €6,000 for each case. The contract must be for at least six months and be for full-time employment.

    Time frame: First half of 2022.

  • For the 2022 subsidy call, we’ve budgeted a total of €1,650,000 in grants for projects that foment local commerce and the economic promotion of the neighbourhoods. Regional or sectoral commercial associations and not-for-profit commercial entities in the city can apply for the subsidy. A consumer line is included in this call, aimed at consumer organisations in Catalonia.

    Time frame: From 7 to 27 January 2022

  • Call for grant applications for reviving the local economy. Up to 80% of the project can be financed. There will be six modalities: invigoration of vacant ground floor commercial properties, employment, socioeconomic innovation and SSE in strategic sectors, responsible and sustainable tourism, sustainable good and responsible consumption, urban last-mile merchandise distribution centres and creative industries.

    Time frame: April 2022.

  • To improve the presence of establishments in the digital environment, we have earmarked one million euros for the financing of projects that invest in digital marketing, websites, online stores and digital signage, among others.

    Time frame: April-May 2022.

  • Call for grant applications to subsidise Christmas lighting, in collaboration with the city’s shops, making it possible for hundreds of streets and squares to be full of holiday cheer. The grants are for non-profit city retailers’ associations that will carry out the project in the city of Barcelona.

    Time frame: June 2022.

  • Grants for €2,000 for individuals and legal entities who own businesses or are proprietors of commercial activities, services, restaurants and leisure activities in ground-level establishments, in order for them to replace so-called ‘blind’ shutters with other types of shutters that facilitate viewing the shop window from outside when closed.

    Time frame: From 15 April to November 2022 (or until the budget runs out).

  • This call is geared towards the owners of restaurant establishments and eateries that had obtained a Covid-19 terrace licence and who obtain a licence to install a terrace on the pavement during 2022, in order to facilitate the change of pavement fixtures to a set-up approved by the Barcelona City Council.

    Restaurateurs who wish to maintain these terraces on the pavement must have an accessible, approved and safe platform fixture.

    Time frame: April-May 2022

  • The aim of the call, funded with €450,000, is to provide financial support to cover the ordinary operational costs of their facilities as well as the extraordinary expenses arising as a result of Covid-19.

    Time frame: First quarter of 2022.

  • The Barcelona Municipal Institute of Markets (IMMB) maintains its investment drive with market remodelling and improvement work in progress, through an expected investment of 100 million euros during this municipal term of office. Renovation projects under way: L’Abaceria and Sant Andreu markets. Start of the project for the remodelling work on the Mercat d’Horta and Mercat de Montserrat. The aim is to put the focus on plans for improving and maintaining Barcelona’s markets, with an annual budget of 4 million euros.

    Time frame: Throughout 2022 and 2023.

ADVICE

Through Barcelona Activa, we are putting a personalised helpline at your disposal, so you can clear up any doubts and/or access the financial aid and advice services for workers, organisations and enterprises. The helpline (+34 900 533 175) is free and available Monday to Friday, from 9 am to 6 pm. Enquiries are referred to the specialist services or resources best suited to each case.

  • Advice services for self-employed people, enterprises and organisations in the social and solidarity economy: setting up, funding, managing talent, transfers, internationalisation, digital transformation and so on.

  • Barcelona’s international profile is raised thanks largely to the considerable number of international players established in the city, such as the consulates and chambers of commerce of other countries. The City Council traditionally maintains regular meeting and exchange forums with these players, which it is now strengthening with the aim of highlighting, through these multipliers, Barcelona’s situation and the measures being taken for reviving the city.

  • Barcelona has launched an information service on protocols which give priority to people’s health and mobility in the city’s public spaces, facilities and installations. We offer an online advice service for enterprises linked to the visitor economy to find out the health and safety protocols or measures best suited to their business.

  • We have launched a platform with all the information and resources that can facilitate the arrival and settling in of international talent in the city. The portal includes the formalities that have to be carried out and a wide range of activities throughout the year so visitors are aware of what’s on in the city, can make new contacts and become Barcelona’s new citizens.

  • This initiative recognises the tourist operators who opt for responsible management in accordance with requirements based on the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and emphasises the importance of health safety in the face of COVID-19 or any other pandemic, to build up trust among customers. Operators that adopt this commitment will receive training and advice on drawing up an improvement plan that enables them to obtain the label, thereby attracting attract new members of the public and improving their positioning. They will also have the Safe Travels seal available, awarded by the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC).

  • Programme to support the emergence of companies in the creative and cultural industries sector. It focuses on supporting new initiatives in order to transform them into viable companies that can prosper in one of the city’s strategic economic sectors.

    Time frame: Until 12 February 2022.

  • New office for information on and the coordination of the dynamic strategy ‘Shutters up’ for ground-floor commercial properties. Here, measures and development actions will be defined, planned and coordinated, and awareness will be raised throughout the city. The office will have information on ground-floor commercial properties and will act as a representative as regards external agents.

    Time frame: First quarter of 2022.

  • The Urban Economic Promotion Areas (APEU) were created to promote and modernise urban areas to improve the quality of the urban environment and consolidate the compact, complex, cohesive and environmentally respectful city model. This in turn increases companies’ competitiveness, favouring job creation.

    In the first phase, information and training will be offered to commercial hubs and players in the economic sector of the city of Barcelona. This will raise awareness of the Urban Economic Promotion Areas and give them the knowledge needed to carry out the constitutive process. It will also provide guidance in the planning of an APEU in order to maximise the chances of success and analyse the viability of implementing an APEU in the areas proposed.

    Time frame: March-July 2022.

  • The Observatory was conceived as an orderly knowledge platform, collecting and providing data for monitoring the evolution of ground-floor commercial properties and activities. It can also help identify opportunities, provide principal and secondary indicators that may be of interest to different groups (internally, commercial sector and entrepreneurs), and inspire the development of initiatives that improve the sustainability of active commercial properties and getting empty ones occupied.

    The functions of this observatory are to quantify and openly share the available knowledge on ground-floor commercial properties and activities, monitor the evolution and changes thereof, and provide inspiration for new strategies.

    Time frame: Throughout 2022.

  • Business advice in your shop. The Barcelona City Council comes to shops to provide them with guidance, not just on how to re-define their business strategy but also on how to put the business back on its feet, adopt new marketing models and develop new formulas for incentivising demand, always respecting the work pace of each person and at no cost.

    Time frame: January-November 2022.

  • Project to revitalise local trade with the contributions of young talent in the creative industries. Various training centres in creative disciplines come into contact with commercial hubs. Groups of students diagnose issues and propose creative initiatives to reactivate small businesses.

    This project makes it easy for small businesses to make contact with creative thinking and strategies, facilitating the commissioning of design professionals for later projects.

    Time frame: Until June 2022.

  • The OMIC (Municipal Consumer Information Office) offers commercial hubs, district trade councils and companies informational sessions to make consumer rights public knowledge. In these, they explain the channels used for consumer support in the city, how to make enquiries and file claims, the mediation and arbitration process for issues related to consumption, and answer any questions related to these topics that may arise.

    Time frame: Throughout 2022.

  • The Municipal Consumer Information Office (OMIC) provides an information and advisory service for commercial establishments, self-employed individuals, micro-companies, consumer associations and citizens in general. OMIC provides guidance for companies as consumers of basic services or continuous business services: utilities, telephone services, insurance and financial products.

    Time frame: Throughout 2022.

  • This is a municipal facility that specialises in the fostering of responsible consumption and aims to promote a more conscientious consumer culture that is committed to making a positive impact on people and on the environment. It participates in trainings organised by other services dedicated to various groups. It also houses the Responsible Consumption Information Point, offering talks, activities, exhibits and spaces for use within its facility.

    Time frame: Throughout 2022 (except August).

  • With the completion of phase 1, the diagnosis of how single-use plastic is used in the municipal markets, the measures to combat this are now being formulated. The IMMB will participate in the Barcelona City Council’s 3rd Zero Plastic Round Table. On the other hand, the Green Trade initiative has been launched in all of the municipal markets to foment organic, local products. The Social and Solidarity Economy of the Barcelona City Council, the FEMM and the food guilds are all working collaboratively to execute this project, which is already in its consolidation phase, with 619 establishments already having joined.

    Time frame: Throughout 2022 and 2023.

Training

Get trained

If we want to be competitive, we need to be up to date! That’s why Barcelona City Council has launched a wide range of specialised training lines, designed to address the future with more drive than ever. These are geared towards companies and entrepreneurs. If you are looking for work or you would like to broaden your professional horizons in the ICT sector, don’t miss this opportunity!

  • The Cibernàrium offers training to improve digital technology skills and contribute to tackling the challenges posed by digitalisation. And for people who are just getting started in ICTs, they have basic training available at the Antenes Cibernàrium [Cibernàrium Antennae], located all over the city!

    Time frame: Throughout 2022.

  • The Urban Economic Promotion Areas (APEU) were created to promote and modernise urban areas to improve the quality of the urban environment and consolidate the compact, complex, cohesive and environmentally respectful city model. This in turn increases companies’ competitiveness, favouring job creation.

    In the first phase, information and training will be offered to commercial hubs and players in the economic sector of the city of Barcelona. This will raise awareness of the Urban Economic Promotion Areas and give them the knowledge needed to carry out the constitutive process. It will also provide guidance in the planning of an APEU in order to maximise the chances of success and analyse the viability of implementing an APEU in the areas proposed.

    Time frame: March-July 2022.

  • Barcelona Activa offers free training to help individuals find a new job, improve their professional profile, become entrepreneurs or grow their business. Individuals will also have access to the technological training offered by the Cibernàrium and the specific courses for young people and women. They can choose between different types of training experiences and different formats: in-person, online and via streaming.

    Time frame: Throughout 2022.

  • As part of the initiative supporting the digital transformation of shops and restaurants, Barcelona Activa has designed a training catalogue to help the commercial fabric and restaurant sector take the leap into the digital world. With more than 50 courses available, you have no excuse for being left behind!

    Time frame: Throughout 2022.

  • Project to revitalise local trade with the contributions of young talent in the creative industries. Various training centres in creative disciplines come into contact with commercial hubs. Groups of students diagnose issues and propose creative initiatives to reactivate small businesses.

    This project makes it easy for small businesses to make contact with creative thinking and strategies, facilitating the commissioning of design professionals for later projects.

    Time frame: Until June 2022.

  • This is a programme promoted by Barcelona Activa, in conjunction with Mercabarna and the Fundació Intermedia and in collaboration with the Barcelona Municipal Institute of Markets, which seeks to respond to the need for generational handover in the markets. The programme is aimed at young people aged 18 to 29, with or without compulsory secondary education (ESO), Baccalaureate or intermediate Vocational Training qualifications, and offers guidance and training to become an assistant in one of three food-trade specialities: butchery, delicatessen or shops selling local, organic products.

    Time frame: Throughout 2022.

PROMOTION

Promovem Barcelona [We Promote Barcelona]!

Barcelona City Council is launching tools that promote the city’s economy. To this end, it is carrying out several initiatives aimed at stimulating local economic activity, in line with the recovery of international markets. This guide features some of the services and various promotional campaigns that have been launched.

  • Barcelona enjoys a good international image thanks to a strong, accredited and prestigious brand which adds value to its offering and elicits a favourable perceptions. For the purposes of protecting and strengthening the Barcelona brand, specific initiatives are now being implemented to disseminate Barcelona's values among international players and opinion formers.

  • ‘Discover Barcelona’ is an activity we have prepared for the international community so they can discover Barcelona’s economic, business and innovation potential and network. Two or three tours are planned each year and you can find out about them on the Barcelona International Welcome website.

  • Provided with an important digital component, they are aimed at various specific sectors of the market (domestic, European, long distance), depending on the steady possibilities of connectivity. They seek to attract a high-value visitor profile that shares the city’s attributes, and highlight new contents, especially those relating to cultural offers and a safe-, smart- and sustainable-city image.

  • Its aim is to make Barcelona an international benchmark in knowledge exchanges, talent, resources and capacities for innovation in the world of technology and sport, to improve the economic competitiveness of the players that sign up to it.

  • Initiative in the markets network through the promotion of the differential values of the city’s markets in the fresh, quality, local, organic and short-circuit product distribution network. At the same time, we should also highlight their role as watchdogs for healthy and sustainable food.

    Time frame: Throughout 2022 and 2023.

  • BCN MARKET is a digital initiative that was created through an agreement between the City Council and Barnacom to promote and sell products and services online. It was created as a solution for consumers in Barcelona so they can buy from trustworthy shops, maintaining the direct relationship between the professional and the client.

    Time frame: Throughout 2022.

  • Agròpolis is a public community space for dialogue, work and action, formed by civil society, businesses, universities and the public administration, who have a common goal of collaborating to transform Barcelona’s food system, taking the principles of food sovereignty and agro-ecology as a starting point.

    Time frame: Throughout 2022.

Regulatory changes

  • In order to meet the needs of the restaurant industry and other establishments that have terraces, mitigating the effects caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, the tax rate for the use of public property for terraces and enclosed outdoor seating areas will be reduced by 75%.

    Time frame: In effect exclusively during the 2022 tax year.

    Link: ajuntament.barcelona.cat/norma-portal-juridic/es/#WW/vid/845260927

    Geared towards: merchants, shopkeepers and those in the restaurant industry

    Property tax (IBI) rebates

    The Barcelona City Council offers different rebates on this tax: for newly constructed housing, social housing, for large families and for installed systems to thermally or electrically harness the energy from the sun. These will be in effect for the three tax years following the date the installation is legalised.

    Time frame: All year round, but the specific terms for each rebate should be checked.

  • The Barcelona City Council offers different rebates on the tax for business activities.

    Rebate for cooperatives

    Reduction of the IAE rate for cooperatives, as well as unions, federations and confederations thereof, in the terms established by Law 20/1990, dated 19 December, governing the tax system for cooperatives. This rebate is requested when registering for the tax and is indefinite in nature.

    –    Rate reduction for increasing the number of staff

    Rebate on the tax on business activities (IAE) for taxpayers who pay city tax and have increased their average number of staff with indefinite contracts during the tax period immediately prior to requesting the rebate, in comparison to the period before that one.

    The application must be sent before 31 May of the tax year for which the rebate is being requested and it will only have effects for that tax year.

        Rate reduction for the use of renewable energy

    Rebate for taxpayers who install systems for thermally or electrically harnessing the energy from the sun, for two years on their activities subject to the tax.

    The rebate should be requested by the interested person within the three months following the date the procedure to legalise the installation was registered with the competent authority at the Generalitat of Catalonia. Once granted, the tax rate will apply for the two tax periods following the application date.

    Time frame: is specified for each rebate/reduction.

  • of all types (except trailers) classified as zero emissions according to the Directorate General of Traffic’s vehicle registry.

    –       Reduction on the tax for road vehicles for the owners of vehicles classified as ECO that use gas fuel, with emissions of up to 120 g/km of CO2: Reduction on the tax rate for road vehicles for the owners of vehicles of all types (except trailers) classified as ECO that use gas fuel, with emissions of up to 120 g/km of CO2, according to the Directorate General of Traffic’s vehicle registry.

    -       Reduction on the tax on road vehicles for owners of vintage vehicles: Reduction of the entire amount of the tax on road vehicles for those vehicles considered to be vintage, under the regulations for historical vehicles.

    Time frame: is specified for each rebate/reduction.

    For new vehicles (not yet registered):

    –       When submitting the tax self-assessment.

    –       15 days, counting from the date of the tax self-assessment, in order to accredit that the requirements for the rebate have been met.

    For vehicles that were already registered: the deadline to present the application is 16 July of the current year. For applications submitted after this deadline, the rebate will come into effect for the next tax year.

    For historical vehicles: the application should be only done once, and the deadline is 16 July of the current year. For applications submitted after this deadline, the rebate will come into effect for the next tax year.

  • The Barcelona City Council offers different rebates on the buildings, installations and works tax. The buildings, installations and works tax (ICIO) rebate can be requested for those works that intend to construct buildings or make installations that have been declared of special interest or usefulness for the city. This can be because of social, cultural, historical, artistic circumstances, because they foment jobs, or because they incorporate thermal or electric solar energy systems.

    Time frame: The rebate must be requested when applying for the corresponding licence or presenting the prior communication for the works, buildings or installations. Applying for the rebate on the tax self-assessment form is understood as a request for a tax advantage.

    Rebate requests that are presented after the licence application or communication, or after the works, buildings or installations are finalised, in the case of the legalisation thereof, are considered late.

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Reactivating the economy

Financial aid, employment and business advice, training, regulations and so on. Select your profile and explore all the tools and resources that we have been implementing to tackle the COVID-19 economic crisis. Barcelona never stops!

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