Ministry of Economic Development
of the Russian Federation

     

Questions/Answers on Legislation

The Department for Special Economic Zones and Project Financing renders informational support in case of issues concerning legislation in the sphere of Special Economic Zones (SEZ).

Contact person: Tatiana Igorevna Balmysheva, The Deputy Head of the Department for Special Economic Zones and Project Financing, balmisheva@economy.gov.ru

1. Who can claim for acquisition of the special economic zone resident status?

Acquisition of the resident status of a Technology Innovative SEZ and a Tourism and Recreational SEZ may be claimed for by an individual entrepreneur or a commercial organization except for a unitary enterprise if it is registered in accordance with the legislation of the Russian Federation in the territory of a municipal entity within which the SEZ is located (in the territory of one municipal entity if the Tourism and Recreational SEZ is located in the territory of several municipal entities) and is planning to carry out relevant technology innovative and tourism and recreational business activity in the SEZ.

Acquisition of the resident status of an Industrial Production SEZ and a Port SEZ may be claimed for only by a commercial organization except for a unitary enterprise if it registered in accordance with the legislation of the Russian Federation in the territory of the municipal entity within which the SEZ is located (in the territory of one municipal entity if the Port SEZ is located in the territory of several municipal entities) and is planning to carry out relevant industrial production and port business activity or business activity related to construction, reconstruction and operation of the objects and infrastructure of the sea ports, river ports or airports in the SEZ.

2. Are there minimal volume investment requirements established for the SEZ residents?

The minimal volume investment requirements are established for the residents of the Industrial Production SEZs and, in some cases, for the residents of the Port SEZs.

Under the Agreement on Conducting Industrial and Production Business Activity the SEZ resident shall make capital investment in roubles in the amount of not less than three million Euros (not counting intangible assets). Besides, the SEZ resident shall make capital investment in roubles in the amount of not less than one million Euros (not counting for intangible assets) within one year after the conclusion date of the above-mentioned agreement.

If the Agreement on Conducting Business Activity in the Port SEZ provides for conducting the business activity related to construction and reconstruction of infrastructure objects of the sea ports, river ports or airports, the SEZ resident during the validity term of such Agreement shall make capital investment in roubles in the amount of:

  • not less than one million Euros (not counting for intangible assets) in construction of the infrastructure objects of the sea ports, river ports or airports , including the new sea port, river port or airport;
  • not less than three million Euros (not counting for intangible assets) in reconstruction of the infrastructure objects of the sea ports, river ports or airports.

Conducting port business activity by a SEZ resident is conditioned by its submittal to the customs authority of securement for customs duties, tax payment according to the procedure established by the customs legislation of the Russian Federation. The securement for customs duties, tax payment in conducting of port business activity shall not be less than:

  • thirty million roubles in conducting of port business activity related to any goods warehousing and storage, wholesale and exchange trading thereof including those of excisable goods or mineral raw materials;
  • ten million roubles in conducting port business activity related to warehousing of the goods being non excisable goods or mineral raw materials as well as to storage, wholesale and exchange trading thereof;
  • two and a half million roubles in conducting another kind of port business activity.
3. What stages does the process of the SEZ resident status acquisition consist of?

The Applicant shall submit to the Ministry of Economic Development of Russia an application for conclusion of an agreement on conducting industrial and production business activity, technology innovative business activity, tourism and recreational business activity or business activity in the Port SEZ supported by a business plan in accordance with the form approved by the Ministry of Economic Development of Russia as well as other documents required by the current legislation. The Applicant shall be entitled to submit the application via JSC “Special Economic Zones”, its subsidiary companies and local branches.

The application and the enclosed documents shall be considered by the Ministry of Economic Development of Russia which shall make a decision either to transfer the application for the agreement conclusion and the business plan to the Expert Council on Industrial Production SEZ, Technology Innovative SEZ, Tourism and Recreational SEZ or Port SEZ, or to refuse to consider the agreement conclusion application. The Applicant shall be notified of the decision made.

The corresponding Expert council shall assess the Applicant's business plan on the basis of the criteria established by the Ministry of Economic Development of Russia, make a decision on support or non support of the business plan, and transfer it to the Ministry of Economic Development of Russia.

The Ministry of Economic Development of Russia shall notify the Applicant on the decision to conclude the agreement on performing (conducting) industrial production, technology innovative, tourism and recreational business activity or business activity in the Port SEZ provided that the Expert council took a decision to support the business plan or on the refusal to conclude the agreement if the Expert council made a decision to refuse the business plan support.

The Applicant and the Ministry of Economic Development of Russia shall conclude the agreement on performing (conducting) the industrial and production, technology innovative, tourism and recreational business activity or a business activity in Port SEZ. Standard forms of the mentioned agreements shall be approved by the Ministry of Economic Development of Russia.

The Ministry of Economic Development of Russia shall make a record in the Register of SEZ residents concerning the registration of the Applicant and issue a certificate of the SEZ resident status registration.

The Applicant shall be deemed a SEZ resident from the date of the corresponding record made in the SEZ residents Register.

4. What types of activity can SEZ residents conduct in the territory of the SEZ?

In the SEZ territory the residents shall be entitled to conduct commercial business limited only by the agreement on performing (conducting) industrial production, technology innovative, tourism and recreational business activity or business activity in Port SEZ.

In the territory of the Industrial Production SEZ the residents shall be allowed to conduct industrial and production business activity defined as production and (or) processing of goods (products) and their selling.

In the territory of the Technology Innovative SEZ the residents shall be allowed to conduct technology innovative business activity defined as creation, production and selling of research and development (R&D) products, programs for electronic computing machines (computer programs), databases, topologies of integrated microcircuits, informational systems, services in implementation and maintenance of such products, programs, bases, topologies and systems.

In addition, by the decision of the Expert council for technology innovative SEZs, R&D deliverables production shall be allowed within the Technology innovative SEZs. Such decision shall be taken by the Expert council for Technology innovative SEZs individually according to the business plan of a potential or an actual resident. In taking the decision the Expert council for Technology innovative SEZs shall be guided by science, technology and engineering development priorities and the list of crucial technologies of the Russian Federation approved by the Government of the Russian Federation.

In the territory of the Tourism and Recreational SEZ the residents shall be allowed to conduct the tourism and recreational business activity defined as the business activity of legal entities, individual entrepreneurs in construction, reconstruction, operation of tourist industry objects, objects intended for health resort treatment, citizens’ medical rehabilitation and recreation as well as the tourist business activities and activity related to development of mineral water resources, therapeutic muds and other natural treatment resources, their extraction and use, including activity related to health resort treatment and disease prevention, medical rehabilitation, citizens’ recreation, mineral water industrial bottling.

In the territory of the Port SEZ the residents shall be allowed to conduct only port business activity and also, in cases provided by the Agreement on Conducting Business Activity in Port SEZ, business activity related to construction, reconstruction and operation of infrastructure objects of the sea ports, river ports or airports. The port business activity shall be defined as the following types of activity performed in the territories of sea ports, river ports and airports:

  • goods storage and other services usually rendered in the sea ports, river ports, and airports in accordance with the International Treaties of the Russian Federation and the legislation of the Russian Federation;
  • supplying and fitting-out for sea vessels and aircrafts including ship supplies (marine stores), onboard reserves, as well as vessels or aircrafts equipping;
  • production, repairing, technical maintenance, modernization of sea and river vessels, aircrafts, aviation equipment including the aviation engines and other component parts;
  • processing of water biological resources;
  • preparation operations for goods sale and transportation (packaging, sorting, repackaging, lot partition, marking and similar operations);
  • simple assembling and other operations performing of which does not change the goods' condition essentially in accordance with the list to be approved by the Government of the Russian Federation;
  • goods exchange trade;
  • goods wholesale trade;
  • ensuring the functioning of Port SEZ infrastructure objects.

The SEZ residents shall not be entitled to have branches and representative offices outside the SEZ territory.

Besides, in accordance with the current legislation in the SEZ territory the following shall not be allowed:

  1. development of minerals deposits, their extraction except for development of mineral water deposits, therapeutic muds and other natural treatment resources, their extraction, and metallurgical production except for other ferrous metals products production not included in the other groupings, aluminium and aluminium alloys semi-products production, castings production in accordance with All-Russia Classifier of Economic Activities;
  2. processing of minerals except for mineral water industrial bottling, otherwise using of natural treatment resources and processing of ferrous and nonferrous scrap;
  3. production and processing of excisable goods (except for light motor vehicles and motorcycles).

The Government of the Russian Federation may determine other types of business activities which shall not be allowed in the SEZs.

5. Can non-residents of the SEZ conduct business in the SEZ?

According to the legislation of the Russian Federation the persons who are non-residents of the SEZ shall be entitled to conduct business activity in the SEZ except for Port SEZ. Such business activity shall be conducted by the above-mentioned persons on general grounds without any additional discounts and preferences.

According to the legislation of the Russian Federation in the Port SEZ sea port, river port or airport administrations, federal state enterprises and open joint-stock companies (shares of which are the federal property) that ensure operation and security of the sea port, river port or airport shall conduct their business activity and have full powers.

6. What regulatory legal acts regulate creation of a SEZ? How can a SEZ be created?

Creation of a SEZ in the Russian Federation is regulated by the Federal Law No. 116-FZ of July 22, 2005 "On the Special Economic Zones in the Russian Federation".

The Superior Executive Body of State Authority of the Subject (constituent entity) of the Russian Federation together with the executive-administrative body of the municipal entity shall submit a request to the Government of the Russian Federation for the SEZ creation with an explanation of its creation expedience and efficiency for solving federal, regional and local problems.

The request for creation of a Port SEZ on the basis of infrastructure objects of the sea ports, river ports, airports shall be annexed by the written consent of a proprietor or proprietors of the infrastructure objects located in the territory intended for the Port SEZ creation. The consent of the proprietor or proprietors of the infrastructure shall not be revoked until the moment of conclusion of the agreement on conducting business activity in the Port SEZ.

The procedure of preparation and submission of the request for the SEZ creation including the document list enclosed in the application shall be determined by the Ministry of Economic Development of Russia. Before the adoption of the relevant order by the Ministry of Economic Development of Russia it is possible to follow the Rules of Preparation and Submission of the Request for Creation of a Special Economic Zone endorsed by the Decision of the Government of the Russian Federation No. 564 of September 13, 2005.

The selection of requests for creation of SEZs of one type shall be performed on the basis of the contest selection. The regulation on the contest for requests’ selection shall be endorsed by the Ministry of Economic Development of Russia. Before the relevant order is adopted by the Ministry of Economic Development of Russia it is possible to follow the Regulation on the Contest to Select Requests for Creation of Special Economic Zones endorsed by the Decision of the Government of the Russian Federation No. 563 of September 13, 2005.

In exceptional cases on the basis of the decision by the Government of the Russian Federation the creation of SEZs shall be allowed without the contest of the requests selection (this form shall be applied until January 1, 2015).

The decision on the SEZ creation in the territories of the Subject of the Russian Federation and the municipal entity shall be adopted by the Government of the Russian Federation and drawn up as a Decision of the Government of the Russian Federation.

Within thirty (30) days from the day of adoption by the Government of the Russian Federation of a resolution on the SEZ creation, the Government of the Russian Federation, the Superior Executive Body of the State Authority of the Russian Federation Subject, the executive-administrative body of the municipal entity in the territory of which a SEZ is to be created shall conclude an agreement on creation of the SEZ.