What about Hi-Tech park?
The idea behind Hi-Tech Park (or HTP) was to create a technological hub, in order to attract new investments and increase the export.
According to the founding presidential decree, any company and any entrepreneur involved in the development, implementation, and export of communication and information technologies could join the project, after passing through a selection process.
The park’s fiscal benefits
Park residents enjoyed and still enjoy a variety of benefits. Needless to say, the most popular are of a fiscal nature.
“Pecunia non olet”, uh?
Specifically, The Hi-Tech Park members are exempt from all corporate taxes, including value-added tax and income tax.
Individual income tax for employees of the resident companies is fixed to 9% and isn’t included in the total annual income.
This particularly favorable tax regime (a gentle euphemism to say “tax haven”) is one of the main reasons for the success of the project.
Currently, the park can boast about 400 companies and more than 35 000 employees.
Pretty sweet, considering that we talk about a country of 10 million people!
“The Hi-Tech Park members are exempt from all corporate taxes, including value-added tax and income tax.”
Some numbers about HTP
The composition of the park residents is fairly balanced.
- 41% of HTP residents were set up by local investors
- 24% are joint ventures
- 35% are fully foreign investments
Talking about clients, 92% of the software produced in HTP accounts for exports.
- 49% to Europe
- 45% to the USA and Canada
- 4% to Russia and CIS
In 2018, a new decree “On the Development of the Digital Economy” was approved.
This document fixed a 50-years special legal regime for the park and legally promoted the circulation of digital currencies based on blockchain.
After this initiative, the number of companies entering the HTP increased by 10 times and the Belarusian high tech sector enjoyed a skyrocketing reputation.
We made IT. Time to make IT specialists!
Although the technology sector was already consolidated in Belarus since the times of the Soviet Union, a huge boost was given in the third millennium.
Because of the increasing demand for IT specialists, companies and educational institutions promoted stronger cooperation to train new developers.
IT corporations started to offer free vodka and Kalashnikovs practical experience to students in joint laboratories (up to the 52 actually existing).
This long-term investment has paid off. Today, in fact, a quarter of students choose technical specializations and Belarusian universities offer about 70 IT-related courses in constant increase.
Not only potatoes!
Belarus can boast an IT sector in constant growth, thanks to initiatives like the Hi-Tech park and low levels of government interference.
And don’t forget about our developers. Belarusian developers are the heart and soul of this process of renewal.
For this country, outsourcing is a way to improve its reputation and to be remembered not only as a country of potatoes, radiations, and everlasting presidents.
Even if we are sincerely proud of our potatoes.
About the other two things… meh.