According to the official, quoted in a statement sent to VerAngola, the pace of construction of the refinery means that "by mid-2022 the refinery will be inaugurated and will start operating.
The statement also said that the package of tax incentives had been approved: "The project, whose construction work, under the responsibility of OEC - Engenharia e Construção, is going ahead as initially agreed between the parties involved, has just seen approval of the package of tax incentives to which it is entitled under the Foreign Investment Act.
According to the statement, the package "includes mechanisms for phased application of taxes, accelerated forms of amortization and reintegration, exemption from withholding tax, and the establishment of stability clauses.
Cited in the statement, the project's promoters said that this package was "a determining factor for construction of the Cabinda refinery and its entry into operation to be ensured, avoiding any slippage in the project initially approved by the Angolan government.
Among the tax incentives approved are "a 90 percent reduction in the industrial tax rate, for a period of 15 years, the exemption from advance payment of the Industrial Tax on sales, also for a period of 15 years, and a 90 percent reduction, for the same period, of the tax on the Application of Capital.
According to the statement, the refinery is also exempt from paying Property Tax for 12 years and "VAT on the importation of materials, equipment and machinery that are intended exclusively for the execution of its operations during the investment phase (first five years of the project)."
In addition, the company that owns the refinery is also "exempt from self-assessment of VAT, for 15 years, for specialized services contracted to non-resident taxpayers or without tax domicile in Angola, contained in the list pre approved by AGT, and exempt from withholding tax for receipts paid as a crude processing fee (tooling fee) by Sonangol or other economic agents to whom they provide services for a period of 15 years.
With this package, the state "undertakes not to expropriate, seize or perform any act that, directly or indirectly, makes unfeasible or negatively affects the implementation of the project," except in cases where there is a "deviation from the purpose for which it was designed and which justifies the granting of these tax benefits," the statement said.
According to the promoters, this project aims to "add value to the Angolan oil production chain and contribute to the dynamism and diversification of the national economy, both through the integrated use of its resources and the creation of direct and indirect jobs in the Cabinda region.
The refinery, which is owned by "the Angolan company Cabinda Oil Refinery Lda., which is 90 percent Gemcorp-owned and 10 percent owned by Sonaref through a holding company based in Malta," is being built based on "an innovative project financing structure in Angola, with 100 percent private financial resources and without any State guarantee.