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3 Sep 2020

Belarusian FEZ register over 60 new resident companies in H1 2020

Belarusian FEZ register over 60 new resident companies in H1 2020
FEZ Gomel Raton. Archive photo

GOMEL, 3 September (BelTA) – Belarusian free economic zones (FEZ) registered over 60 new resident companies in H1 2020, Belarus Deputy Economy Minister Anzhelika Nikitina told journalists as she took part in the conference to discuss important issues of FEZ operation in Belarus in the FEZ Gomel Raton on 3 September, BelTA has learned.

The country is drawing up a five-year program and a targeted medium-term forecast, Anzhelika Nikitina pointed out. “One section of this program will deal with free economic zones. At present, Belarusian FEZ have more than 450 resident companies. In the first half of 2020 alone, their number grew by over 60,” she said.

Since 2006-2007, the FEZ have developed significantly and have contributed to the development of the country. For example, at the start, the FEZ occupied 7,000m2, while now this figure stands at 30,000m2. “Free economic zones account for almost 17% of the industrial output, 20% of the foreign direct investment, and almost 20% of the county’s export. So the country’s expectation that FEZ as entities should accumulate investment in fixed capital and be export-oriented has been fulfilled,” Anzhelika Nikitina said.

According to her, it would be wrong to say that preferences for FEZ take money from the budget of the regions or the country in general. “For every ruble of these preferences, the FEZ return 1.5 rubles to the budget,” she explained.

The participants of the conference also highlighted the FEZ contribution to the social and economic development of the regions. For example, the share of the FEZ Mogilev in Mogilev Oblast export makes up 53%, Head of the FEZ Mogilev administration Andrei Yartsev said. This year, the FEZ has registered four woodworking and metalworking companies as residents.

The FEZ Gomel-Raton has also attracted new resident companies. Head of the FEZ Antonina Yezhova noted that in H1 2020, the FEZ beat the target for investment on a net basis. “The export went down a little due to the pandemic. However, we expect the companies without departmental affiliation to meet the targets for January-September,” she added.

The conference in Gomel, which is running on 3-4 September, has brought together heads of the country’s free economic zones, specialists in investment, economics, and law, representatives of the Belarusian Economy Ministry and the Gomel Oblast Executive Committee. The agenda of the forum includes four important matters regarding further development of the FEZ: improvement of the legislation, ways to attract more investment, land relations and infrastructure development, and economic efficiency.

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