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7. Other alternatives for operating in Spain

7.2. Temporary Business Associations (UTEs)

  • Concept/purpose: Under Spanish law, UTEs are temporary business alliances set up for a specified or unspecified period of time, for the purpose of carrying out a specific project or service. UTEs allow several companies to operate together on one common project. This form of association is very common for engineering and construction projects but can be used in other sectors as well.
  • Legal personality: UTEs are not companies in the strict sense and have no legal personality.
  • Fiscal transparency regime: while they have no legal personality, in order to qualify for the special fiscal transparency regime provided for UTEs, their formation must be recorded in a public deed and they must be registered on the Special Register of UTEs at the Spanish Ministry of Finance. Furthermore, they must comply with bookkeeping and accounting requirements similar to those of Spanish companies. They may be also registered at the Commercial Registry. Formalities for formalization of a UTE are similar to those for a company or branch, adjusted to reflect the special characteristics of this type of arrangement.
  • Regulation: UTEs are governed by Law 18/1982 on the Tax Regime of Temporary Business Groupings and Associations and Regional (Industrial) Development Companies, amended, among others, by Law 12/1991, Law 43/1995 and Law 62/2003.