Incentives for business
The efficiency of the Belarusian economic model is enhanced through introducing new forms of activity and implementing innovative projects. One of the points of growth of regional economic complexes are industrial parks. The program of socio-economic development of the Republic of Belarus for 2021-2025 provides for the formation of industrial sites in cities with a population of 80 thousand people or more.
The Brest region may become the first where construction of such parks will begin this year. The projects will be implemented on the basis of existing subjects of innovation infrastructure: a branch of the Brest Science and Technology Park will be opened in Baranovichi, and the operating Technopark Polesie LLC, which is part of the biotechnology and green economy cluster, is expanding in Pinsk.
The creation of a production infrastructure in Baranovichi and Pinsk on the "greenfield" model, or from the ground up, will ensure the growth of entrepreneurial initiative, attract residents (primarily small manufacturing enterprises) whose activities are aimed at import substitution. In Baranovichi, it is planned to focus on the production of import-substituting products for the furniture, automotive and machine-tool industries, waste recycling. The Industrial Park in Pinsk will specialize in mechanical engineering, metalworking and chemical industry. The "innovation incubator" mode will create conditions for the organization and subsequent increase in output in the shortest possible time.
The projects may arouse the interest of regional flagships — Pinskdrev CJSC, Atlant CJSC, Amkodor-Pinsk CJSC and a number of others, whose industrial potential can be used in the future to attract the first residents with the subsequent creation of production cooperative chains with them. In addition, residents of industrial parks will be able to rent the territory and production buildings with the possibility of buying out and building premises on an individual project.
One of the advantages of industrial parks is that they will be built on the territories of free economic zones. And FEZ residents, as known, have a number of preferences. First, they do not pay profit tax on own products, on real estate during the first three years after registration in the territory of the free economic zone and on land (except for land plots provided for temporary use and not returned in a timely manner). In addition, the FEZ subjects do not pay customs duties, excise taxes and other payments in respect of goods imported into the customs territory of the Eurasian Economic Union, processed in the FEZ and ¬exported with the status of their own production outside the EEU. In this case, the benefits of access to the main transport routes in the direction of the European Union — the Russian Federation — Central Asia — China are added to the economic preferences.
The concept of the industrial park suggests the possibility of creating an Educational center with the introduction of theoretical training on the basis of an educational institution, and practical training at production facilities (dual education). The ready-made infrastructure, the training of qualified personnel in parallel with the preferential legal regime increase the attractiveness of the Brest region – a potential center of innovative activity in Belarus.
Despite the existing risks, the implementation of innovative projects will attract extra investments to the region's economy and create new jobs. In addition, finding sites in the free economic zone will contribute to the growth of export potential and attract foreign investors, including for the organization of new industries for the region.
Eduard SEVERIN, head of the BISR Brest branch.