Currently, the number of citizens contemplating or making a decision to move to another country is increasing. But everything is not so simple here, especially if you are the owner of an already established and successful business. You have spent so much effort and energy on the formation of a client base, a positive image of the company, advertising campaigns, thought out and implemented a strategy for the development of your business, taking into account the Belarusian legislation. What to do with all these aspects in the event of a move and how not to lose the most important thing - human resources, because it is the staff that decides everything. Let's try to highlight this difficult and complex task in detail below.
What does «business relocation» mean?
Let's first define what a business relocation is. Are there any varieties of this process and what is the difference between them. In the Belarusian legislation, there is no precise definition of «business relocation» as a regulatory framework governing this process. In general, by «business relocation» we mean the process of relocation, transfer of assets of one legal entity to another country, including partial transfer with preservation of some functions in the country where this business is registered. It is important to understand that we are moving a whole chain - not only material resources, but also schemes for earning money and interacting with contractors, logistics, marketing, accounting, all these aspects of activities can be moved to another location together or separately. Therefore, there is a classification of business relocation: full and partial.
This concept includes the closure of an office in Belarus, the relocation of all functional parts of the business, necessarily with the completion of activities in the country by liquidation of a legal entity or bankruptcy (if the enterprise does not have enough funds to pay off debts to all creditors and the budget). Depending on the form of ownership of the organization, there are some peculiarities of the sale of a share in the property, if the owner is several persons. As a rule, already existing investors or shareholders have the privileged right to purchase part of the business. When an organization is liquidated, it is mandatory to exclude the company's data from the Unified State Register of Enterprises (USR).
Partial relocation of a business involves opening a branch of the organization in another country with the preservation of some functions in another. Thus, this is a kind of business expansion. In this case, the company can open a branch with a new bank account and balance.
Relocation within Belarus
In Belarus, the activities of all enterprises are regulated by the Law on Business Societies, the Civil Code and the Economic, Tax, and Labor Codes. Therefore, when planning a revocation of a business within the country, it is important to study in detail the above-mentioned regulations.
Domestic relocation procedure
If, as a result of moving to another city, you plan to lay off employees, or your subordinates do not agree to the move, then according to the labor code you are required to pay severance pay in the amount of 3 monthly salaries (article 44). If you are renting an office or warehouses, then it is quite simple here, you are waiting for the expiration of the lease agreement or terminate the lease relationship, having paid the forfeit stipulated in the contract in advance, and simply move. If you own your premises, then you have two options - rent it out or sell it. Much here depends on the market situation and on your future plans, because the option of returning to the previous place is not excluded due to a change in the business environment towards positive changes. Business relocation within the country is possible in several ways: accession, merger, division and separation (article 54 of the Civil Code).
Relocation to another state
Relocation procedure to another state
An important aspect of the move is the presence or absence of a language barrier, mental difficulties in the country where you are planning to move your business. It is also important to understand what are the features of the tax burden in the country, because with the same salary, in different countries the employee receives completely different amounts on his hands. Perhaps this will become a «stumbling block», because few will agree to changes, knowing in advance that they will receive less benefit. Therefore, the business owner must understand that he too will have to increase his labor costs so that «clean” employees receive at least the same salaries as before moving to another country. Often the employer pays for the move, or compensates for the costs associated with the change of residence of their employees. To ensure the full functioning of the company, it is important to analyze the labor market situation in the proposed location, because there may be a shortage of high-level specialists.
List of required documents for relocation
• Statutory fund
• Balance sheet
• Data of all personal accounts of the organization
• If you opened a branch, then all documents of title but a new business unit.
• Seals and stamps of the enterprise
• Extract from the USR on the closure of the enterprise and or the opening of a new subdivision (branch)
• Certificate from the tax inspectorate about the absence of debt to the budget
• Certificate from the Social Employment Fund about the absence of debt
• Licenses, technical data sheet, certificates, including ISO, patent documents, certificate of registration of a trademark, confirmation of copyright (if you have any equipment or you manufacture a product that requires a special procedure for quality confirmation, and you plan to transport these fixed assets to another city or country).
Stages of relocation
• Liquidation of an organization in the country
• Elimination of debts to creditors and the budget
• Transfer of enterprise property to business owners
• Exclusion of data from the Unified State Register
• Withdrawing an investment from a business and transferring it to another country
Selecting a country for relocation
The most important step for moving is to study the specifics of doing business in the country where you plan to move your business. It requires a comprehensive study and comparison of conditions for several factors: how to open a new legal entity or a branch of an old one, peculiarities of tax legislation, the size of the authorized capital, the amount of contributions to insurance and pension funds, the minimum wage for employees. As a rule, to make such a difficult decision, it is still better to turn to professionals - auditors and lawyers who specialize in servicing business companies and individual entrepreneurs.
Business relocation to Russia
Many Belarusians go to Russia to work after the collapse of the USSR. Mentally, we do not separate ourselves from the Russians, considering them a «brotherly» people. Also an important plus will be the smallest income tax - it is equal to the Belarusian rate, and amounts to 13%. The Russian-speaking population, the comparative similarity of legislation and taxation, all this greatly simplifies the process of doing business in Russia.
Business relocation to Ukraine
In 2016, an agreement was signed between the EU and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, within the framework of which 40 million euros were allocated for consulting, educational, informational and other support for small and medium-sized businesses in Ukraine. One mentality, a common history and the presence of a large number of Russian-speaking population with common roots will significantly speed up the process of adaptation of your employees in this country. The total cost of registering a legal entity in Ukraine is comparatively the smallest, real estate rent and the cost of living in general are very attractive for moving to this country.
Business relocation to Poland
Today Poland is the fastest growing economy in the European Union, whose GDP has increased by 81% over the past 15 years. At the same time, the IT sector and the gaming industry occupy a significant share in the annual economic growth. In general, transferring a business to this country, you move to the European Union, which opens up new horizons for development and opportunities for obtaining a residence permit in the future and, as a result, citizenship for you and your employees. Agree, a very attractive prospect. Also, it is quite easy to find Russian-speaking citizens here, which will greatly facilitate your communication. Plus territorial proximity, we have a common border, so when some employees move without families and loved ones, since the distance between our countries is insignificant and transport links are well established, many will find this factor very attractive.
Business relocation to other EU countries
When moving to EU countries, it is worth considering such an important aspect as the presence of a language barrier. In many countries, with the exception of the Czech Republic, Cyprus, you cannot hear Russian speech, therefore, when contacting government agencies and when communicating with contractors, you may need the services of an interpreter, which leads to increased costs. In many EU countries, English is the official language. In many countries, there is a system of support for small businesses by allocating grants for opening and development.
Business relocation cost
To move to different countries, you will need different financial costs. Namely, the minimum size of the authorized capital by country:
• Russia - 112 euros;
• Ukraine - 150 euros
• Poland - 1250 euros;
• Other EU countries - from 1000 to 8000 euros.
The amount of the state fee for opening a legal entity in euros:
• Russia - 45;
• Ukraine - 4.5 for each attempt to submit documents;
• Poland - 250;
• Other EU countries - 150-1100.
The cost of services for registering a company from local companies, in euros:
• Russia - 800;
• Ukraine - 50;
• Poland - 2550;
• Other EU countries - 1600-3750.
Business relocation terms
Terms of business registration in different countries, in working days:
• Russia - 3-60;
• Ukraine - 3-15;
• Poland - 3-40;
• Other EU countries - 14-60.
You also need time to select premises for renting an office or production, find housing for employees, a school and kindergarten for their families, obtain work visas and buy tickets. On average, these processes are solved within 1-2 months, depending on your exactingness and financial capabilities.
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