Crimea Free Trade Zone Investments Soar to US$1.65 Billion
The Crimea Free Trade Zone located in Sevastopol, was established in 2015, following its annexation by Russia, and has realized some US$1.65 billion worth of foreign investment since it was bought into operations, according to Sergei Aksyonov, the head of the FTZ.
Speaking at the Friends of Crimea Forum, an international conference, held in Yalta yesterday, he said: “The volume of investments in the free economic zone has exceeded 100 billion rubles and the number of its residents has exceeded one thousand. Notably, they include foreign, including European, residents. However, there are not that many of them as we would like to have.”
According to Aksyonov, more and more European partners are set for mutually beneficial cooperation, despite the sanctions. “Far-sighted foreign businessmen choose mutually beneficial cooperation instead of ideological chimeras. They are looking for ways to establish such cooperation already now. The more so as there are possibilities to work on the peninsula bypassing the sanctions, not hyping one’s presence in this region,” he said.
The free economic zone in Crimea was set up in 2015. Residents are exempt from property taxes for a term of ten years and from land taxes for a term of three years, and enjoy lower income tax rates and insurance contributions.
The international conference, “Crimea in the Modern International Context. The Friends of Crimea Forum,” opened in Yalta yesterday. The forum has brought together almost 90 delegates represented by political figures, incumbent ministers, members of the leadership of ruling parties, deputies of the parliaments of foreign countries, and former ministers. As was reported earlier, delegations from 20 countries would come to the forum. The actual number of the countries represented at the forum exceeds 30.
The Friends of Crimea Forum was set up as an experimental site to coordinate interests and compare the viewpoints of representatives of political and cultural elites from various countries and representatives of the civil public.
Russia is becoming increasingly attractive to foreign investors, despite the imposition of Western sanctions. Low profits tax rates of 24 percent, which are relatively easily (and legally) discounted to 20 percent generally apply, although several regions employ lower rates as special investment incentives, including profits tax breaks lasting up to ten years. It is well worth analyzing the Russian tax code for business investment opportunities in the Russian market, which is currently growing at rates higher than that in the European Union.
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