On 19 May 2014 the Government published an information note to clarify the scope of the proposed changes in Finance Bill 2014.
It was announced at Budget 2014 that companies generating energy and benefitting from Renewable Obligation Certificates (ROCs) and/or the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) scheme, both in Britain and Northern Ireland, would be excluded from the venture capital schemes (including Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme (SEIS), Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS) and Venture Capital Trusts (VCTs)). These changes will take effect in respect of shares issued (for SEIS/EIS) and investments made (for VCTs) after Royal Assent of the Finance Bill 2014. The information note confirms that energy generation via anaerobic digestion or hydroelectric power will not be excluded, as is the case for companies undertaking these activities and benefitting from Feed-In-Tariffs (FiTs).
The information note also confirmed that some companies qualifying for the newly introduced Social Investment Tax Relief, as well as Co-operative Societies, can qualify irrespective of the means of generating energy.
Finally, the planned consultation considering the potential exclusion of certain companies receiving Government subsidies and allowing forms of convertible loans under the schemes, will be published during the course of Summer 2014.