Economy & Politics

The Chamber of Commerce details its recovery plan

Strengthening the competitiveness of the economy, focusing on public investments, supporting employment, promoting innovation and developing attractive taxation, the institution unveiled its ideas on Wednesday to ensure a sustainable recovery favorable to businesses.



Strengthening the competitiveness of the economy, focusing on public investments, supporting employment, promoting innovation and developing attractive taxation, the institution unveiled its ideas on Wednesday to ensure a sustainable recovery favorable to businesses.

If strong and rapid measures have been put in place by the government to avoid a deeper economic crisis and numerous job losses, the Chamber of Commerce believes that “these measures must be prolonged” because the risk of bankruptcies in chains over the next few months is very real.

“Vigilance, responsiveness and flexibility must remain at a time when the crisis and its negative impact on the economy and businesses will continue far beyond 2020,” said the Chamber of Commerce. If the latter is committed to supporting the government to help businesses get through this period, it has also put five proposals on the table to support the recovery phase.

Pressekonferenz zum Jahresbericht 2019 der ITM, mit Marco Boly und Dan Kersch, Foto: Lex Kleren / Luxemburger Wort

The broad outlines of the measures on future employment were raised during the tripartite last week. The Minister of Labor explained the details on Thursday. And take the opportunity to make some updates on the social climate.

The first concerns the attractiveness and competitiveness of the economy. To remain attractive, Luxembourg needs legal and political stability. The Chamber of Commerce considers it important “to consolidate these advantages to pursue economic diversification (accelerating the digitization of public services, administrative simplification is underlined)”. The idea is to minimize company procedures.

The Chamber of Commerce believes that bankruptcy legislation needs to be modernized. “The creation of a model allowing managers to regularly assess the health of their business (self-diagnosis) must be a priority, in order to be able to act before financial difficulties arise”. For the public establishment, the House of Entrepreneurship presents itself as the government’s ideal partner for implementing such a tool.

I as investments and innovation

In terms of economic diversification, the Chamber of Commerce puts forward the idea of ​​building in Luxembourg a “health ecosystem”, a real Medical Valley, a new center of expertise for the country, which could revolve around a medical school offering education complete medical.

Luxembourg also has undeniable advantages thanks to its efficient private players grouped within the BioHealth cluster and with the Luxembourg Institute of Health. An example of specialization in a field with high potential which can be envisaged in parallel with the industrial financial sectors, trade and traditional services.

Chantier Gare - Chantier Postgebei - Drone - Photo: Pierre Matgé / Luxemburger Wort

Thirty infrastructure projects were presented to the House on Thursday. Over 230 million are already planned for eight projects.

The second lever to operate is that of public investments. The latter must consolidate the recovery and offer the country modern infrastructures and technologies that enhance its attractiveness to investors. “The investments to be favored are those that meet the imperatives of the digital and environmental double transition” estimates the Chamber which proposes that the investment capacities be maintained in 2020 as provided for by the multi-annual program.

The third pillar which must ensure recovery concerns the Research, Development and Innovation (RDI). A sector generating job creation, strengthening the competitiveness of businesses, improving the quality of life of citizens or more sustainable growth. Like major projects, it is also an opportunity to give a boost to digital, environmental and sustainable transitions.

Reduce the cost of labor

The job retention remains one of Luxembourg’s main priorities. Emergency measures have been taken regarding employment support during confinement (partial unemployment). “These are temporary measures. Knowing that the recovery will be gradual, the key word must remain flexibility, until the normal return of activity and certainly beyond December 31, 2020 “, advance the Chamber.

… and the self-employed, only in non-reimbursable aid! And the Ministry of the Middle Classes recalls that it is still possible to request certain aids, provided that you submit your request before July 15.

The latter aims to support employment by, for example, reducing the cost of work in certain specific cases (reduction of social security contributions, exemption from social charges on overtime, etc.) by facilitating the development of voluntary teleworking or by encouraging companies to intensify their personnel training policies. Freelancers are not forgotten. Particularly vulnerable to the consequences of the crisis, the Chamber plans to “include them in the aid schemes”.

Finally the taxation is the last last pillar on which the institution intends to rely to support the recovery. The Chamber of Commerce recalls that it is “necessary to watch over the development of corporate tax rates”. Ultimately, and with a clear concern for fiscal attractiveness, Luxembourg must appear in the first third of the ranking of countries with the most favorable nominal corporate tax rate.


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