As the September and start of the school year is approaching, there is one question going through many peoples’ mind – when the roadworks in Riga will finally be over? According to a legend – Riga will never be ready. Probably so, but let’s hope that the streets of Riga will soon be back to normal.
FICIL is busy getting ready for the start of the new autumn season. In focus – Copyright and Tax issues, launch of the FICIL work groups and preparations for the new FICIL Sentiment Index discussed in detail at the FICIL Board meeting. Continue reading the August issue of our Office report to get more information.
FICIL members meeting – 12 September at 16:00
Tax issues and tax reform has been in focus for the last ten months. On 28 July, the Parliament adopted laws ensuring implementation of the tax policy reform as of next year. While there are many details still unknown, FICIL membership will have an opportunity to hear about key implications of the reform on business and investment, ask questions and have an open debate with others on 12 September at 16:00 when we are having our first Members meeting after the summer break dedicated to the Tax reform (venue: Balasta dambis 15, kindly provided by Swedbank).
Updates from the FICIL Board and work groups
- After a short summer break, FICIL Board met to discuss the preparations for the next FICIL Sentiment Index (the public launch date currently set for 6 December) as well as continued to discuss some of the topics following-up to the last HC (communications strategy, finances, unified approach to position papers and work groups etc.);
- Tax policy and administration work group met on 16 August to discuss implications of the Tax reform and next steps as the Ministry of Finance will start the work in September on implementing regulations. W/g members will look for aspects that still need clarification. Visual insight from the meeting can be seen in our gallery;
- Members of the Intellectual property protection work group held two meetings in August (8 and 17 August). Key item – amendments to the Copyright Law to reasonably limit author’s right to revoke its work (in particular, in the case of audio-visual works, computer programs, works created during employment). The proposal submitted to the Ministry of Culture. More details here.
FICIL Sentiment Index – interviews in September/October
September is the time in year when we start the work on the annual FICIL Sentiment Index. The aim of the FICIL Sentiment Index is to summarize the key concerns and suggestions of the main foreign investors in Latvia. It is done on the basis of in-depth interviews carried out by the members of the FICIL Board. In the weeks to come FICIL office will provide you with more background information on the interviews, questions and timings that are convenient for your company. Latest FICIL Sentiment Index available here.
Improvements of Justice system in Latvia – your contribution needed
OECD and the Government of Latvia are carrying out the project with aim to assess access to justice. FICIL has been asked to flag up main concerns that are connected with the openness of Latvia’s court system. To get deeper understanding of main challenges in the justice system, OECD has created a survey. Follow the link to go to the survey and have your say on what should be improved in the Latvian court system.
Open economy and more public services in English – in process
You may be aware that in summer we carried out a survey on availability of public services in English and submitted a proposal to the Ministry of Economy suggesting provision of specific public services also in English. The issue was discussed at the meeting of the National Economy Council (Tautsaimniecības padome) on 9 August. The Ministry of Economy plans to review it again in early Autumn.
Brexit and implementations for business and investment
The Brexit has been on businesspersons’ minds since the last summer and still many things are not certain. In order to clarify the situation and to hear an update on international trade and a future UK and EU partnership, the newly appointed UK Ambassador to Latvia Keith Shannon met with the FICIL Executive Director Marta Jaksona. During the meeting parties covered also investment climate in Latvia which is a crucial factor to bring more UK companies to Latvia.
Hope you find this update useful. Please do let us know if you have any questions.
Your FICIL team