Research and Development Tax Incentives

Last updated: April 27, 2021

Export & Trade

Research and Development Tax Incentives

Published: April 27, 2021

Stage: Ongoing

Priority: Medium

Issue for Business: ExportNZ has heard from many businesses about the challenges they are facing when applying for the new Research and Development Tax Incentives. Businesses that have previously been granted Callaghan Growth Grants are finding they are being turned down for the R&DTI. The tax incentives were supposed to remove costs and encourage more R&D, but businesses are finding that are needing to use ‘the big four’ consultants to apply. The main issue is not with the legislation, but with how the legislation is being interpreted with not enough emphasis being placed on the development, and too much emphasis on the research being ‘new to the world’ (which is difficult and costly to prove).

Action: ExportNZ has tabled the issues with the productivity commission, which is exploring this issue as part of their ‘frontier firms’ paper. Export NZ has collected feedback from businesses on this issue via a survey, and collated feedback. It has also discussed this issue with Minister Nash, and Minister O’Connor in a meeting, and have sent a file note with feedback to them. ExportNZ’s Catherine Beard is meeting with Minister Woods to discuss this issue further. BusinessNZ CEO Kirk Hope is set to meet with the CEO of IRD to discuss the issues with implementation.

Outcome: Minister’s office has acknowledged the issue and has made some changes, so we expect conditions to improve. The resolution of the issue is ongoing.

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