The Brazilian Senate's Committee of Science, Technology, Innovation, Communication and Informatics (CCT) approved on November 28, 2017, a new text for the draft Law proposed by Senator Jorge Viana, which restores to Law No. 13.243/2016 (“Law”) some items previously vetoed by the Presidency.

The Law, which aims to encourage investments in the areas of science, technology and information through a significant change in Innovation Law (Law No. 10,973 / 04), had some of its articles vetoed by the Presidency on the grounds that it could lead to a loss of revenue.

In turn, the Senate Bill No. 226/2016(“Bill”) elaborated by Senator Viana, reinserted into the Law items such as: (i) provision of grants to foster innovation in projects without the obligation of an employment relationship, (ii) expansion of the managerial, budgetary and financial autonomy of the Public Institutions of Science and Technology (ICT) through the signing of a management contract and (iii) even exemption from bids on contracts with companies that are incubated in public ICTs for the provision of innovative products or services, provided that they are carried out with micro-enterprise, small business or medium-sized companies.

On November 28, however, a substitute text for the Bill, authored by Senator Cristovam Buarque, was approved by the CCT. The modification, among other additions, introduces the entities of “Sistema S” - a set of corporate entities focused on professional training, social assistance, consulting, research and technical assistance, which have common roots and similar organizational characteristics - to the concept of a development agency, in order to develop actions that stimulate and promote the development of science, technology and  innovation. In addition, the amendment also authorizes the association of federal bodies, development agencies and public ICTs among themselves and between private entities, aiming for the establishment of legal entities of private law for the production, commercialization and offer of products and services stemming from the activities of research and development.

Among other changes, it is also worth highlighting that the new text allows Technological Innovation Centers (NITs) of each ICT to negotiate and manage technology transfer agreements from another ICT, which currently does not hold express authorization.

The Bill in question is currently with the Commission of Constitution, Justice and Citizenship (CCJ) and will be referred after to the Economic Affairs Commission (CAE) for a final decision.