Russia's lower chamber of parliament (the State Duma) has passed in the third reading the bill on creation of special economic port zones (SEZ). The new special economic zones can be created at seaports, river ports and international airports. In accordance with this law, free custom zones will be created on the territories of SEZ. These measures are aimed at raising investments for construction and development of the ports.
This bill envisions the possibility of creation and functioning of special economic port zones (SEZ) on the territory of Russia. These zones can be created at the territories of sea (river) ports, open for international transport and calls of the foreign vessels; at the territories of airports, open for airplanes performing international air transportation, and also at the territories, assigned for reconstruction and operation of sea (river) port, airport. The document envisions the decrease of the rental payments for land and premises on the territories of the ports, provision of various grants from the government, which finally will result in stimulation of foreign trade activity and increase of the export volumes.
SEZ will be created on the territories with the total area not less than 50 sq. km. The issue of a zone expansion is to be regulated by RF Government decree. The term of functioning of the zones has been increased up to 49 years. As it is specified in the bill this term can’t be prolonged. The duration period of the other types of special economic zones amounts to 25 years.
Also the bill proposes to alternate the conditions of registration of companies as the residents of SEZ. Now the amount of securing the custom payments and taxes for the resident of SEZ, conducting the business in the port industry shall be not less than: 10 mln. rubles for the residents involved in the port activities related to the warehousing of non-excisable goods or mineral raw materials; the storage, open and wholesale trade of these goods; 30 mln. rubles for the residents involved in the port activities related to the warehousing, storage, wholesale and open trade of the goods, including excisable goods or mineral raw materials; 2.5 mln. rubles for the residents involved in the other port activities.
Also the volumes of the investments required for construction, reconstruction and operation of the infrastructure port facilities have been amended. The investments into construction of the infrastructure of a new sea port shall amount to not less than € 100 mln., the investments into construction of a river port or an airport shall amount to less than € 50 mln. The minimum investment into reconstruction of the facilities of sea, river ports or airport shall be € 3 mln.