Across the Non-Energy Sector

Investment Incentives for Sectors such as Financial Services, Software Design and Application/ ICT, Aviation Services, Fish and Fish Processing, Construction.

I. Grant Fund Facility

The Grant Fund Facility, established by the Government of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, provides new opportunities to develop small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) that:

  • are involved in the production of high value-added products and services that can compete in export markets; and
  • foster the economy’s diversification thrust.

This facility is administered by ExporTT Limited and assists SMEs in the following eight (8) designated sectors, with the acquisition of new capital requirements/expenditure:

  • Software Designs and Applications
  • Fish and Fish Processing
  • Aviation Services
  • Financial Services
  • Manufacturing
  • Agriculture and Agro-Processing
  • Maritime Services
  • Creative Industries

Through this facility, local business persons can access individual Grants from the fund up to a maximum of $250,000 per beneficiary to finance 50% of the cost of the acquisition. (The Grant does not cover working capital, land and building costs, and installation costs).


The Grant Fund Facility is available to:

  • Sole proprietors, partnerships and companies wholly owned by Trinidad and Tobago nationals and registered and operating in Trinidad and Tobago.
  • “Small” and “Medium” firms as defined within the Micro and Small Enterprise (MSE) Policy for Trinidad and Tobago (2013 – 2016) – September 2016:
    • Small Firms – generating less than or equal to TT$8 million in annual turnover.
    • Medium Firms – generating between TT$8 million and TT$15 million in annual turnover.
  • Firms that:
    • Earn a minimum of 50% of their revenue from export sales, or
    • Produce an import substitute, or
    • Demonstrate the potential to develop a substantial export base (minimum 50% export sales) as certified by ExporTT, or
    • Otherwise identified to support diversification of the economy.
  • Firms that are established going concerns that have been in existence for a minimum of two (2) years.

For more information on this facility and the Application Form, visit:


II. Research and Development Facility (RDF)

The Research and Development Facility provides funding to stimulate and support investment in new and advanced technology and innovation as a competitiveness enhancement tool for enterprises in the non-energy manufacturing and services sectors.

It provides funding for the successful marketplace entry of innovative and technology driven business ideas in Financial, Maritime and Aviation Services, Software Design and Applications, Creative Industries, Fishing and Fish Processing, Agriculture and Agro-Processing.

Eligible companies can access funding in three (3) phases:

  • Phase 1: Feasibility- 70% of the total cost of the project up to $100,000.00;
  • Phase 2: Product and service development- 50% of the total cost of the project, up to $750,000.00;
  • Phase 3: Product/Service Commercialization- up to $150,000.00

Special Conditions apply.

For more details, visit:

III. Co-Financing

Through ExporTT Limited, companies can be reimbursed up to 50% of the total eligible costs incurred in accessing new export markets or expanding within existing markets. A company shall receive financial support on pre-approved investments, purchases, costs or expenses. Co-financing funds export-oriented activities by domestic non-energy manufacturing and service companies in operation for a minimum of one (1) year. The grant is based on the size of the company:

  • Small Companies- Generating less than or equal to TT$8 million in annual turnover 50% to a limit of $60,000.00. Funded portion will be paid directly to suppliers for small companies only.
  • Medium Companies- Generating between TT$8 million andTT$15 million in annual turnover 50% to a limit of $55,000. Reimbursable.
  • Large Companies- Generating over TT$15 million in annual turnover 50% to a limit of $50,000. Reimbursable.

For more details and to apply, visit:

IV.Trade Financing for exporters

A variety of trade financing options can be accessed through the nation’s export credit agency, EXIMBANK. Exporters can utilize any of the products, namely pre and post shipment financing, demand loans and export credit insurance.

Trade Financing Options:

  1. Pre-Shipment Financing - To assist exporters with meeting confirmed export orders. This is a short-term loan extended to companies to assist in the payment of inventory. The tenor is customized to the exporter’s needs and usually ranges between 30-270 days. After the agreed tenor has passed, the exporter must repay EXIMBANK 100% of invoice plus interest at a rate of 5-9%.

    • Adds flexibility to its cash flow allowing efficient business management.
    • Provides extra time for the goods to cleared by customs and resold before you need to pay for the goods.
    • Suppliers are ensured payment upon request from the exporter.
  2. Post-Shipment Financing - Exporters can receive financing in the form of a loan to cover 85-95% of the invoice value of export sales. The loan must be repaid at rates varying between 5-9% from the assigned proceeds of payments from EXIMBANK approved buyers. This credit period usually ranges between 30-270 days and one hundred and twenty (120) days Bill of Lading or Drawdown.

    • Adds flexibility to its cash flow allowing efficient business management.
    • Provides extra time for the goods to cleared by customs and resold before you need to pay for the goods.
    • Suppliers are ensured payment upon request from the exporter.
  3. Demand Loans - Demand loans are accessible by manufacturers seeking to perform equipment upgrades to improve the quality of their export products or renovate their premises. The demand loan must be repaid within one (1) year to five (5) years at rates varying between 5-9%. The payment terms usually offered to clients include moratorium on principal, interest and principal monthly or interest monthly principal on maturity.
  4. Export Credit Insurance - Export Credit Insurance provides risk protection on goods and services exported on credit. This insures exporters against payment defaults by foreign buyers. This service is afforded up to ninety (90) days and the premiums vary based on the buyer’s credit worthiness, payment terms and the economic environment.
Eligibility Criteria

The company must be: -

  • locally owned
  • a limited liability company
  • existing for more than three (3) years
Application Procedure

Companies interested in applying should contact the offices of EXIMBANK. A meeting will be arranged, after which a completed application form and the following supporting documentation should be attached and submitted: -

  • Audited Financial Statements/ Accountant's Report for the last three (3) years.
  • Monthly/Quarterly/Semi-Annually management financial report.
  • Cash Flow Projections for the next twelve (12) months with footnotes.
  • Copy of Company's Last Annual Return
  • Company By-Laws (if applicable)
  • Certificate of Incorporation / Continuance
  • Notice of Address
  • Registration of Business Name
  • Notice of Directors & Secretary / Change of Directors
  • Copies of Identification for all Directors / Signatories
  • VAT Registration (if applicable)

EXIMBANK would evaluate the submission and a credit application would then be made on behalf of the importer, in cases that require such.

V. Allowances

With respect to corporation tax, there are certain deductions from a company’s chargeable profits that are allowed under the Corporation Tax Act, Chapter 75:02 (as amended), Income Tax Act, Chapter 75:01 (as amended), and Income Tax (In Aid of Industry) Act, Chapter 85:04 (as amended). These deductions include allowances for promotional expenses, wear and tear and capital expenditure.

  • a. Promotional Expenses Allowance

    The Promotional Expenses allowance is equivalent to one hundred and fifty percent (150%) of the amount actually expended for the purpose of creating or promoting the expansion of foreign (export) markets. The allowance is given for:

    1. advertising in foreign markets;
    2. providing promotional literature for overseas distribution;
    3. participating in trade fairs and similar promotional activities;
    4. overseas travel for the purposes of conducting promotional activities;
    5. providing free samples and technical information on products;
    6. inviting buyers to Trinidad and Tobago;
    7. the recruitment of specialist sales personnel operating in foreign markets, for a maximum of two (2) years;
    8. conducting foreign market surveys

    NOTE: When a company receives this deduction under Section 10(b) of the Corporation Tax Act, Chapter 75:02 (as amended), it does not qualify for a similar Promotional Expenses allowance under Section 10(a) of the Income Tax Act, Chapter 75:01 (as amended).

    Eligibility Criteria

    The Company/Applicant must: -

    1. be registered, incorporated and a resident in Trinidad and Tobago;
    2. have incurred promotional expenses for the export of architectural engineering, design, quantity surveying or contracting services in connection with the building industry or for the export of goods and agricultural produce manufactured in Trinidad and Tobago and shipped in commercial quantities.
    3. have exported goods as a result of the promotional expenses incurred.

    This deduction does not apply to:

    1. Expenses incurred in petroleum operations;
    2. Expenses incurred for the export of goods to Antigua, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, Montserrat, St. Kitts-Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and Suriname.

  • b. Capital Expenses Allowance

    Depreciation charged in the annual financial statements is not deductible for taxation purposes. It is replaced in the computation of taxable income by initial and annual wear and tear allowances. The rates of annual wear and tear allowances are set out in the seventh schedule of the Income Tax Act, Chapter 75:01 (as amended). Broadly, they are intended to recover the cost over its useful life. Wear and tear allowances must be calculated on the reducing balance basis on actual cost. Indexation for inflation is not permitted.

    1. Machinery and Equipment

      This category includes not only manufacturing machinery and equipment but also such items as office equipment, furniture, fixtures and fittings, vehicles and ships.

      Manufacturing companies, under the Income Tax (In Aid of Industry) Act, Chapter 85:04 (as amended), are entitled to an initial allowance of 90% of initial costs for machinery and equipment. All companies are entitled to annual wear and tear allowances on their machinery and equipment, calculated according to the declining-balance method. In the first year, the initial and annual allowances are calculated on cost. Thereafter, annual allowances are calculated on the balance of cost after deducting the allowances previously granted. With effect from January 1, 1995, additions to fixed assets will be pooled in various categories. Tax depreciation rates (wear-and-tear allowances) have been standardised by the seventh schedule to the Income Tax Act, Chapter 75:01 (as amended). Fixed assets are to be classified into one of four classes:

      Class Rate
      A – Buildings and improvements 10%
      B – Motor Vehicles, furniture and fittings, plant and machinery 25%
      C – Heavy equipment, motor lorries, trucks and computer equipment 33.3%
      D – Extra heavy equipment, airplanes 40%

    2. Industrial Buildings

      With effect from January 1, 1995 newly constructed buildings used for the production of income (i.e. industrial, commercial and rental properties) will receive a 10% wear and tear allowance using the declining-balance method.  Industrial buildings include factories, warehouses, and housing for workers as well as other buildings provided for their welfare, such as sport pavilions.

      NOTE: Where a company is entitled to benefit under –

      1. the Fiscal Incentives Act, Chapter 85:01 (as amended)
      2. the Trinidad and Tobago Free Zones Act, 19 of 1988 (as amended)

      in respect of the building or structure or the capital improvements made to the building or structure, no wear and tear allowance will be granted.

    3. Intangibles

      Expenditure on acquiring patent rights, trademarks, and goodwill must be capitalized. Only manufacturing companies subject to the provisions of the Income tax (In Aid of Industry) Act, Chapter 85:04 (as amended), may depreciate such expenditure for tax purposes. Research and development expenditure is deductible in the year in which it is incurred, although very substantial expenditures may be written off over a longer period.

    4. Balancing Allowance or Charge

      If an asset that qualified for tax wear and tear allowances is sold at a price less than its tax written-down value , a balancing allowance is deductible equal to the deficiency. Conversely, if disposal proceeds exceed the tax written-down value, the excess (called a balancing charge), up to the amount of the tax depreciation allowances previously deducted, is taxed as part of the profit for the year. Where machinery and equipment is replaced, a balancing charge arising on the sale of the original assets may be deducted from the tax-depreciable cost of the replacement assets instead of being taxed in the year in which it arises. No balancing charge may be deemed to arise on the disposal of an industrial building if it has been used for more than 50 years.

  • c. Training allowance

    In computing the chargeable profits of a company for the purposes of corporation tax, a company shall be allowed expenses reasonably incurred in the training and retraining of employees of the company up to 150% of such expenditure under Section 10E of the Corporation Tax Act, Chapter 75:02. That is to say, if a company expends $1,000 in the training or retraining if its employees, it can receive up to $1,500 in allowances. 

    Application Procedure

    Companies can apply for the aforementioned allowances via the Corporation Tax Return form when filing their tax returns with the Inland Revenue Division (IRD).  This form must be submitted to the IRD by the 30th April of each year, in respect of income for the preceding year. New Companies are required to apply for a file number on the prescribed form, obtainable at the Division. This number is to be used on all correspondence with the Board and must be quoted on remittances.

  • d. Tax Allowances for Creative Sector Sponsorship

    Sections 10G(1), 10I(1), 10J(1), 10K(1), 10L(1) and 10Q(1) of the Corporation Tax Act provide for tax allowances relating to the sponsorship of arts and culture, sporting activities or events, audio, visual or video productions, production companies and the fashion industry up to TT$12,000,000.

    These allowances can be 100% or 150% of the actual expenditure and shall be treated as deductions when ascertaining the chargeable profits of the company for that year of income.

    For more details, including the particular allowances of the various expenditures, refer to the Corporation Tax Act, Chapter 75:02

    Responsible Agency/Contact Person

    Inland Revenue Division
    Government Campus Plaza, 2-4 Ajax Street, Port of Spain

    Mr. Dabie Dookharan, Supervisor Taxpayers Services
    Tel: (868) 800-8299 ext. 10436