“The measures implemented in 2017 to improve the business environment will make it more attractive to domestic and foreign investors, and will significantly facilitate day-to-day work of entrepreneurs. Achievements of the last year include introduction of a 0% corporate tax rate for reinvested profits, a “Consult First” principle in the work of national regulatory authorities, taking of a series of measures for the development of the SRS EDS, and finding of first solutions for wider availability of public services in English. I am grateful to all the parties involved for the work done last year, particularly the National Language Centre, for cooperation in ensuring the openness of the Latvian business environment. The positive assessment already received from entrepreneurs pleases us,” the Deputy Prime Minister, the Minister of Economy Arvils Ašeradens emphasises.
One of the measures covered by the Action Plan for Improvement of the Business Environment is to assess the possibility to keep accounting records in a foreign currency and to assess the possibility to keep accounting records in English. At its meeting of 23 January, the Government reviewed the conceptual report of the Ministry of Economics on keeping accounting records in English and use of other currencies in postings, and decided on the further steps to ensure openness of the business environment. The conceptual report also covers the experience of other countries in addressing these issues and the mechanisms applied, as well as analyses the Latvian legal framework and offers potential solutions.
In the first half of this year the State Revenue Service is planning to complete its work on EDS Machine Translation, which will result in the availability of the EDS and the content of the system concerned in English. Business organisations have repeatedly indicated that the issue of the provision of public services in English should be addressed as a priority, which will significantly facilitate work of foreign entrepreneurs. The machine translation technology was developed by the Latvian company SIA “Tilde” in collaboration with the IT Competence Centre.
By September 2019, it is planned to improve the provision of the SRS support to foreign investors in English (communication, correspondence, submission of documents), in so far as this is not in conflict with the regulatory enactments regulating the area of national language, as well as to ensure constantly up-to-date translations of the most important laws and Cabinet Regulations into English on the website www.likumi.lv, according to the priorities set by the Ministries and the amount of funding available.
At the same time, it should be noted that, although the possibility to allow keeping accounting in English book and to use other currencies in postings was evaluated within the scope of this conceptual report, having evaluated the views of the parties concerned and the current situation, it was concluded that the accounting regulations and the system are currently inadequate for ensuring keeping accounting in English and using other currencies in postings. It was also concluded that it is already possible to use foreign language in accounting in Latvia, in so far as it is not restricted by the existing regulation.
The introduction of a 0% corporate tax rate for reinvested profits will be introduced, which will contribute to investment growth and innovation development can be mentioned as a key measure of the Action Plan for Improvement of the Business Environment implemented in 2017.
Work is also ongoing on the introduction of the “Consult First” principle in the work of national regulatory authorities, which was particularly positively appreciated by entrepreneurs and provides for effective and positive communication with public authorities.
Last year, monitoring of data about immovable properties belonging to a legal person in sections of the Land Register was introduced by sending electronic communications regarding corroborations made.
A series of SRS EDS development measures were also carried out, for example, a report on closed and annulled sick-leave certificates is provided to employers, a structured annex to the Annual Report of companies was introduced and the possibility was introduced to submit several documents in EDS at the same time.
The Electronic Insolvency Monitoring System was also introduced enabling the monitoring of insolvency proceedings and obtaining necessary indicators to look at the effectiveness of the system. The Insolvency Administration systematically performs an analysis of the data obtained, which can then be used for the improvement of the monitoring system and for the improvement of the area of insolvency in general.
Similarly, the “tacit approval” principle was introduced in several processes implemented by national institutions, which significantly facilitates different processes, for example, in certification services.
Public Relations Division
Ministry of Economics