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Opinions & Interviews

23 Nov 2017

Entrepreneurship development ordinance expected to produce results in Belarus in H1 2018

Entrepreneurship development ordinance expected to produce results in Belarus in H1 2018

MINSK, 23 November (BelTA) – The Economy Ministry expects the entrepreneurship development ordinance to produce the first results in H1 2018, BelTA learned from Belarusian Deputy Economy Minister Dmitry Matusevich on 23 November.

“The first results of this document are supposed to show as early as H1 2018,” noted the official.

Dmitry Matusevich stressed that the entrepreneurship development ordinance will send an ideological message. “This is why we can say it came into effect as of the day it was signed because it stipulates principles, which radically change the attitude of government agencies to the private sector. The ordinance will apply not only to small businesses and self-employed businessmen but the entire private sector,” he stated. The deputy economy minister specified that various norms of the document will come into effect at different times: some will come into force after the official publication and some half a year later.

The document introduced the declarative principle of business registration, explained Dmitry Matusevich. “It is the first time the principle has been introduced in Belarus on a massive scale. We believe it will allow opening new enterprises and manufacturing facilities faster. It will be possible to create jobs virtually the next day after the notification is sent,” he said.

Apart from that, tax rates will not be raised and no new taxes or equal instruments will be introduced before 2020. The document also changes the responsibility of private companies and the attitude of government agencies, investigation bodies, and court bodies to private sector. Businessmen will be recognized as bona fide entrepreneurs by default. It will allow private citizens to manage their businesses the way they choose, opting for and out of various legislative acts and standards. The document also introduced the personal responsibility of executives for failures. This responsibility will not affect the companies themselves.

Dmitry Matusevich noted that the entrepreneurship development ordinance provides for reducing the number of various general requirements in the sphere of fire safety, veterinary science, sanitary and epidemiological norms. Relations in civil engineering will be simplified, for instance, property registration.

Asked whether the Economy Ministry expects more Belarusians to pursue private business careers thanks to the document, Dmitry Matusevich said that target figures are stipulated by the government program on developing small and medium private companies by 2020. “We would like the share of small and medium private enterprises to reach 40% by 2020, but the entrepreneurship development ordinance is more about ideology although it will have a direct economic effect. We would like the investment climate to improve as a result of the document and would like everyone to feel it as fast as possible,” he concluded. At present the share of private SMEs in the Belarusian economy stands at 25-27%.

The deputy economy minister underlined that all proposals were discussed in the course of the document’s development. “This year interaction with business unions, entrepreneurs, unions of craftsmen has been unprecedentedly high and very productive,” he stated.

On 23 November Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko signed Ordinance No.7 “On entrepreneurship development”. The document is supposed to give the necessary impulse to the development of business initiative, encourage the business activity of citizens, and improve the country’s investment climate as a whole.

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