19.01.2007 Public Associations: MCAEE, Association of Brest Region Entrepreneurs, “Association of Employers and Entrepreneurs” (Vitebsk), Association of Private Business Assistance “Edinstvo” (“Unity”) (Gomel), “Club of Entrepreneurs” (Grodno), Association of Mogilyov Region Entrepreneurs sent a letter to the Chairman of the Chamber of Representatives of the National Assembly of the Republic of Belarus Mr. Vladimir Konoplyov with an offer to hold the Third Open Parliamentary Hearings “On the Development of Entrepreneurship in the Republic of Belarus” on May, 22 2007.
Dear Mr. Vladimir Konoplyov,
Public Associations: MCAEE, Association of Brest Region Entrepreneurs, “Association of Employers and Entrepreneurs” (Vitebsk), Association of Private Business Assistance “Edinstvo” (“Unity”) (Gomel), “Club of Entrepreneurs” (Grodno), Association of Mogilyov Region Entrepreneurs are applying to you with an offer to hold the Third Open Parliamentary Hearings “On the Development of Entrepreneurship in the Republic of Belarus” on May, 22 2007.
We are asking you to include this issue to the agenda of the next session of the Chamber of Representatives of the National Assembly of the Republic of Belarus. We offer to impose a responsibility for holding of the Parliamentary Hearings on the permanent commissions of the Chamber of Representatives of the National Assembly of the Republic of Belarus (Industry, Fuel and Energy Complex, Transport, Communication and Entrepreneurship; Budget, Finance and Taxation Policy; Money-Crediting Policy and Banking; Housing Policy, Construction, Trade and Privatization). The Entrpreneurship Council of the Republic of Belarus, business associations and regional associations of industrials and entrepreneurs, including Minsk Capital Association of Entrepreneurs and Employers.
It would be rational to invite the deputies of the Council of the Republic of the National Assembly of the Republic of Belarus, heads of ministries and agencies such as: the Ministry of Economy, the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Taxation, the Ministry of Industry, the state Customs Committee, the Science and Technologies Committee and the leading associations of industrials and entrepreneurs etc. To take part in the Hearings.
For the 20 years history of the development of the non-governmental sector of the economy of the Republic of Belarus two open Parliamentary hearings took place - in 1998 and in 2001resulted in resolutions.
6 years passed since the last Parliamentary hearings. Since then part of issues has been settled. However, many problems have not been changed. Besides, new problems appeared in the development of entrepreneurship in Belarus.
In 2006 business community with wide public discussion formed and offered the National Business Agenda of Belarus – the first systematic attempt of settling of actual problems of entrepreneurship developed the entrepreneurship community itself.
During 2006 some of the issues mentioned in the Agenda have been settled. So, the tariffs on notarial services were reduced, the mechanisms of control and checking actions were changed, significant shifts outlined in the system of registration of non-governmental enterprises, a wide range of issues from public associations of entrepreneurs were reflected in different state programs, including the Resolution of the Council of Ministers of Belarus 11.08.2006 № 1029 “On Approval of the Complex of Events to Reach the Forecast Parameters of the Development of Small and Medium Entrepreneurship till 2010”.
On the initiative of Minsk Capital Association of Entrepreneurs and Employers” the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Belarus took a decision № Р-196/2006 “On Technical Normative Legal Acts” on October, 4 2006.
However, the development of entrepreneurship in Belarus does not carries a systematic, consecutive character:
1. The implementation of the Resolution accepted by the Chamber of Representatives and the Council of the Republic of the National Assembly of the Republic of Belarus on the results of the second Parliamentary hearings.
2. The constitutional norm on the equality of forms of property is not implemented.
3. The fine sanctions and economic punishment with regards to legal entities and individual persons are ungroundedly high.
4. The normative legal base of licensing of kinds of activities is an obstacle for access to activity of small and medium enterprises and entrepreneurs, there is a practice of denial in giving licenses because of “inexpedience” without a clear criterion of its propriety.
5. Many problems remained in the administering of taxation. We consider that the transition to the flat system of the income tax from individuals with the rate no more than 12% with simultaneous abolition of taxation of the incomes lower than the minimum level would be more rational.
6. There is weak control of the activity of the enterprises-monopolists that have the rights of state management organs. The absence of a independent effective antimonopoly organ in its turn provides a wide range of such problems as unfair competitiveness, non-implementation of the principle of economic consistency and trust to the rules of doing business on the territory of the Republic of Belarus.
7. The problem of quick liquidation of over 60.000 enterprises that do not work is not settled. In general, the process of liquidation takes 5,6 years. At our point, it is necessary to implement the “economic amnesty” and thus set the correspondent state organs free from ineffective activity that does not influence on the growth of GDP of the Republic of Belarus.
8. There is a majority of problems related to the fate of individual entrepreneurs. It is necessary to overcome the disadvantages of this from of business on legal level, to overcome unfair competitiveness between individual entrepreneurs and legal entities, to provide a possibility for individual entrepreneurs to smooth transition to legal entities without loss of working places and access to professional sustainable activity on the market of goods, trade and services.
The issues that have been stored for ages and have not been settled consecutively and systematically, create the nervous air of uncertainty for entrepreneurs, have negative influence on the image of Belarus, are negatively accepted by the potential investors and business partners of Belarusian business.
During the next 3rd Parliamentary hearings we offer to include the following issues:
1. On the system development of entrepreneurship in the Republic of Belarus;
2. On the creation of stimulating mechanisms not only for creation of new businesses but the development of the existing ones;
3. On the raise of the competitive ability of the goods and services of entrepreneurs;
4. On provision of the equality of forms of property and fair competitiveness;
5. On overcoming of the monopolistic tendencies in economic practice on the territory of Belarus.