Esquerra Republicana (ERC) claims to have a plan to save the VAT payment of the Corporació Catalana de Mitjans Audiovisuals (CCMA). The Acting Secretary of Economy, Pere Aragonès, who sounds to direct the economic portfolio in the new Government, has drawn up a formula to cover the first payment, scheduled for next week, with a loan from the Generalitat to the CCMA. 56 million euros in the short term. It should be returned in one year. This loan will allow for the request of the National Court, which, due to the VAT dispute, affects the period 2012-2014, but not to the rest of the conflicts faced by the CCMA for other subsequent periods.
The CCMA estimated last November at 167.4 million euros the impact that the procedures initiated by the Ministry of Finance to claim the payment of VAT for the contributions of the Generalitat between 2015 and 2018 may have on its coffers. statement, noted that “this conflict threatens the viability of public media” and has expressed its “disagreement with this claim, as well as the will to initiate all appropriate legal procedures to defend the legitimate interests of TV3 and Catalunya Ràdio”.
Aragonès has agreed to this measure with the Secretary General of Presidència, Joaquim Nin, and with the Secretary of Communications, Miquel Martí Gamisans, and has discussed it with those responsible for the CCMA, according to ERC sources.
This measure would solve only part of the problems that the Corporation has derived from VAT, specifically the one that has to do with the period 2012-2014. This conflict is judicialized and is pending the resolution of the Economic-Administrative Tribunal of the State (TEAC). While it is not resolved, the National Court has decided that a bank guarantee must be placed to face a hypothetical judgment against the court, so that the credit that the Generalitat has made available to the CCMA is destined to face this guarantee. . In any case, it must still receive the approval of the Council of Ministers as a consequence of the application of financial control measures.
But the CCMA has two other problems related to VAT. The one that has to do with the period 2015-2017, by which the Ministry of Finance has initiated the procedure for the CCMA to pay VAT for the contributions that the Generalitat has made to the corporation during the three years. The Treasury has also paralyzed the payment to the CCMA of the VAT still pending return for part of 2016, as well as the amount corresponding to the year 2017. The sum of these actions between 2015 and 2017 has a negative overall impact of 147 million euros, according to the CCMA itself.
In addition, the public media face another problem related to the VAT that derives from the change of law of November 2017. With this change, the CCMA goes from being able to enter 12 million euros to having to pay 24 million a year. According to the corporation, this is the most important problem because it implies a total reduction of resources of 39 million euros, when VAT is added to an increase in the deficit and a decrease in advertising revenues. This is the problem of the three that directly causes a crisis of production, as they point out.
Workers of the Catalan Corporation of Audiovisual Media (CCMA) and representatives of the audiovisual sector had claimed solutions for the impact of VAT on the budget of the corporation and that there were no “cuts” in programming and production, something that has been contemplated in the last weeks.