DOING BUSINESS IN BELARUS
Since 2003, Healy Consultants has been efficiently and effectively assisting our Clients with i) Belarus business registration ii) government license registration iii) business bank account opening iv) employee recruitment v) visa strategies and vi) office rental solutions.
Press the link headings below to read detailed, relevant, up to date information.
Advantages and disadvantages
Advantages of Belarus company registration
- Belarus has no restrictions on the residency or nationality for directors, founders or shareholders of a Belarus business entity. As opposed to other nations in the region, no additional permits are required for a non-resident director of a Belarus business setup. In addition, there is no minimum capital requirement for a limited liability company in Belarus;
- The Belarus economy has been one of the most dynamic in Europe in recent years, with growth rates from 8 – 11% from 2004 – 2008. While the economy suffered during the global downturn in 2009, Belarus was one of the few countries to entirely avoid a recession and the economy has since recovered to post growth rates of 5 – 8% in the years following the recession. However, growth has not passed 2% since before 2012;
- Compared to countries of the western world, Belarus is very cheap, including food, transport, utilities, rent, wages etc. Specifically, office rental tends to cost a fraction of what it does in most western cities, a beneficial condition for business;
- The Belarusian government has taken steps in recent years to make foreign direct investment in Belarus a more attractive option, an advantage of operating a business in Belarus. In particular, the government abolished the golden share rule in Belarus, significantly limiting the ability of the government to interfere with the management of private enterprises;
- Belarus is positively ranked as the 44th easiest country to do business in, in a 2016 report published by the World Bank. Belarus’s high ranking is largely attributed to its simplified business registration process and the ease by which property can be registered in Belarus;
- Under certain conditions, dividends earned from sources within Belarus by a foreign organization are liable for a corporate tax rate of 0%;
- The country’s geographically strategic position is between Europe and Russia. Therefore, businesses can utilize the most cost effective mode of transportation and export to both massive markets;
- Belarus’s relationship with Russia has gained it access to the Eurasian Economic Union, giving the country access to tariff-free trade with Russia, Kazakhstan, Armenia nad Kyrgyzstan.
Disadvantages of Belarus company registration
- Belarus has a corporate tax rate of 18%, and capital gains are taxed at a rate of 9 – 18%. In addition, there is a withholding tax rate of 12% on dividends, 10% on interest, 12% on capital gains and 15% on other income;
- The Belarusian economy suffered an internal economic crisis in 2011, largely due to a governmental attempt to raise average income in the country. Inflation reached upwards of 100% and the interest rates of several banks reached 120%. The Belarusian ruble has since recovered but is still reasonably unstable due to a lack of control methods;
- Belarus is not a member of the EU or the WTO and heavy-handed government interference in trade markets makes trade a very difficult process for a private Belarus business setup;
- Belarus suffers from high corruption, being negatively ranked as the 115th least corrupt country in the world in the 2015 Corruption Perceptions Index by Transparency International;
- Part of this is driven by the President, now in his fifth term in office. The President has broad legal powers and, until recently, was subject to sanctions from the EU for perceived human rights abuses;
- Belarus lacks investment and financial freedom, being ranked 157th in the 2016 Index of Economic Freedom by Heritage Foundation. The Belarusian government has little respect for property rights and government control is rigid in both the financial and investment markets;
- The official languages in Belarus are Belarusian and Russian. The majority of Belarusians are not fluent in English. Consequently, language is a barrier when conducting business because all the communications must be translated into Belarusian or Russian.
- The Belarusian ruble (BR) is one of the most unstable currencies in the world. Thus, foreign investors can suffer large losses in foreign exchange when investing locally.
Best uses for a Belarus company
Each region of Belarus has a free economic zone. By doing business in these zones, Clients enjoy a range of benefits including zero tax on exports for the first 5 years, priority at border crossings and full exemption from import duty on raw materials.
Tell us what you need - we’ll send you a customised proposal in 5 hours!
To help us engineer the optimum Belarus corporate structure, please complete the 3-minute questionnaire below; then press the submit button below.
Within 5 hours, one of our senior staff will ring or email you:
- Time to incorporate: Four weeks
- Cost to set up: US$6,940
- Minimum capital: None
- Physical office required: No
- Shareholders: 1
- Directors: 1
- Company secretary: No
- Resident director: No
- Corporate tax rate: 18%
- Corporate tax base: Worldwide
- Shelf companies: No
- Main company type: LLC
Useful links for Belarus
Government and public authority websites:
- Belarus Tax Authority
- Belarus Company Registrar
- Central Bank of Belarus
- Investment Authority
- Chamber of Commerce
- Belarus airport
- Visiting Belarus
- Doing Business in Belarus – EY
- Ministry of Economy Belarus – Doing Business in Belarus
- Investment in Belarus – KPMG
- Belarus: Welcome to Discover
- Commercial Laws of Belarus – EBRD