Business ABC

Locating your business in Belarus

Source: http://www.belarus.by/en/business/location

Your introduction to locating your business in Belarus, from the benefits to the legal requirements

Why locate your business in Belarus?

Belarus ranks 44th among 189 countries in World Bank’s Doing Business 2016.

Since 2006, Belarus has jumped from the 120th position in the World Bank's Doing Business ranking to occupy the 57th place thanks to the measures it takes to improve the taxation system, simplify the procedure for registering property and companies, and others. Moreover, it has become one of the leaders across a number of indicators.

Today Belarus continues working to get into the top 30 countries in terms of the ease of doing business by 2020. It directs efforts at improving administrative procedures, taxation, pricing, licensing, preferential regimes for investors and protection of their rights…

In 2015, foreign investors injected $11.3 billion into Belarus’ real economy (except for banks). The country’s primary investors include companies of Russia, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Cyprus, Austria, and Germany.

Currently the main trading partners are:

  • Russia
  • Ukraine
  • Germany
  • The UK
  • China
  • Poland
  • Netherlands
  • Italy
  • Lithuania
  • Kazakhstan

There are many reasons for such an increase in the number of international companies in Belarus. The main attractions are:

Geographical location
Belarus, on the eastern border of Europe, is strategically well positioned as a major trading route between Europe and the CIS.

Economic stability
In turbulent economic times, the Belarus economy has been less affected than those which rely on global markets. Market analysts predict a robust growth for the economy of Belarus.

Favourable investment climate
Measures to encourage business include Free Economic Zones, the High Technology Park, the Chinese-Belarusian Industrial Park Great Stone, and special tax incentives for businesses operating in rural areas or small towns.

The law of the Republic of Belarus "On Investments" that came into force on 24 January 2014 provides for foreign investment protection and non-interference with private matters of investors. Besides, it grants profit allocation guarantees.

The rights of investors and investment protection are also guaranteed by a number of international agreements that Belarus is a signatory to.

Over the recent years Belarus has kept leading positions on the number of reforms introduced to improve the doing business climate in the country. Thus, according to the World Bank Group data, Belarus has implemented 32 reforms since 2006. Belarus is recognized as one of the global reformers and ranks fourth among 189 countries on the number of reforms introduced over the past 10 years.

Highly skilled workforce
Almost 50% of workers in Belarus have a higher education.

Industrially developed economy
Currently around a third of the Belarus GDP comes from the industrial sector.

What issues do you need to consider before setting up business in Belarus?

As with any new market, it’s vital to do your research before embarking on any business venture in Belarus. As well as researching your market sector you should also find out about:

Where can you get further help and advice?

The Belarusian government is committed to attracting direct foreign investment and promoting international trade. Several bodies and ministries are available to provide help and assistance to foreign investors.

A number of international law and accountancy firms have offices in Belarus. There are also several commercial organisations in Belarus that specialise in helping foreign companies enter the market.

Helpful contacts for foreign businesses in Belarus

Business Environment in Lithuania at a Glance

Source: http://www.investlithuania.com/lets-talk-lithuania/business-environment/?tab=2

  • 3 days start up time for new businesses / Centre of Registers, 2015
  • Tax treaties with 50 major markets including the USA, China and Russia / Ministry of Finance, 2015
  • 0% tax rates for 6 years in special Economic zones and 50% profit tax deduction afterwards / Ministry of Economy, 2015
  • Triple tax deduction for R&D / State Tax Inspectorate, 2015

We’ll give you the safety and support you need to grow your operations.

We understand that a strong business needs a strong environment in which to flourish. That’s why over the last few years we have implemented a number of measures that help businesses get up and running quickly and without fuss. And it’s paying off; Lithuania has jumped eleven places since 2013 for the ease of starting a business to 8th place globally in the World Bank’s Doing Business Report. Our government understands the benefits of investment and is more than ready to provide you with the support you need, and our modern dynamic business sector is fully EU compatible. What’s more, with tax treaties with 50 major markets including China, Russia and the USA, our business environment is truly global in its reach.

Business Guide Lithuania 2016 (PWC) 

Business Friendliness in Latvia

Source: http://www.liaa.gov.lv/invest-latvia/why-latvia/accessibility-large-markets

As a small country in today’s globalized world, Latvia recognizes the importance of attracting foreign investment to sustain economic development. As a thriving democracy, Latvia has consistently pursued liberal economic policies and welcomes investments that foster principles and benefits associated with free markets.

Indeed, World Bank’s report Doing Business 2016 ranks Latvia as 22nd out of 189 countries for ease of doing business, measuring quantitative indicators of regulations and the protection of property rights.

Streamlined bureaucracy: The Latvian government and local authorities have worked diligently to streamline procedures for doing business in Latvia. For example, procedures for incorporating a company can be completed in a single day. The government has developed and implemented the POLARIS Process, a national strategy enabling communication, cooperation and execution of tasks among stakeholders—in industry, government and academics—involved in making investments successful.

Collaboration with investors: Indeed, Latvia’s government understands that active dialogue between elected officials and international investors is a vital and continuous process. Through the POLARIS Process, investment projects of particular importance to Latvia can be raised for administration as necessary by the Coordination Council for Large and Strategically Important Investment, lead by the Prime Minister. The Council provides leadership, helping to solve significant issues if any arise for individual investors. Key investment issues are also regularly raised with the government through the Foreign Investors’ Council in Latvia, various chambers of commerce and, less formally, through access to individual officials and decision makers.

Significant EU Structural Funds available: As a member of the EU, Latvia operates under common, pan-European legislation. To further stimulate investment, the Latvian government is channeling EU Structural Funds to implement a number of state-support programs to foster business development.