Excerpts from Dmitry Medvedev’s opening remarks:
Let’s start with a matter related to the development of the Republic of Crimea and [the city of] Sevastopol. This is very important overall for the improvement of the business and investment climate in our country. We need to consider three bills that serve as the basis for the creation of a free economic zone in the Crimean Federal District.
The peninsula has huge economic potential. At the same time, over the decades, it has been underfunded. To make effective use of this potential, not only state investment is needed but also private investment, which, for understandable reasons, is hard to come by today, while investors, naturally, need special, attractive conditions, including effective administration and favorable tax treatment. The bills that have been prepared should provide these conditions.
In this free economic zone, investors will be exempt from a number of taxes for a term of up to 10 years (depending on tax category), and administrative barriers will be lowered.
The flag-of-convenience and free port practices can be introduced in Crimea’s sea harbors, which will significantly simplify customs procedures. We expect this to incentivize business activity on the peninsula and ensure an inflow of capital investment in industry, transport, infrastructure, logistics, tourism, the health resort sector, and, of course, agriculture.
Dmitry Medvedev: "In this free economic zone, investors will be exempt from a number of taxes for a term of up to 10 years, and administrative barriers will be lowered. The flag-of-convenience and free port practices can be introduced in Crimea’s sea harbors, which will significantly simplify customs procedures."
As a result, the Crimean economy should receive additional resources to develop the social sphere and improve living standards and the quality of life for our people. Thus, a free economic zone should contribute to the successful implementation of a large number of projects as part of the Federal Targeted Program for the development of the peninsula through 2020.
On 1 January 2015, the transition period for our country’s new regions will come to an end although, of course, not all tasks related to this period have been fulfilled yet.
The bills on the free economic zone in Crimea need a full package of bylaws, which should be drafted in a timely manner. This needs to be done without fail and as soon as possible.