Deputy Minister: Development of SMEs important for country’s economy
Development of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) plays one of the most important roles in the economical progress of Azerbaijan.
Deputy Economy Minister Sahib Mammadov speaking at an event dedicated to establishment of cooperation between SMEs and the Center for Simplified Support for Family Business (ABAD) said that development of SMEs is reflected in the “Strategic roadmap on production of consumer goods in Azerbaijan at the level of small and medium-sized enterprises.”
“The Ministry of Economy is carrying out regular activities in this direction,” Mammadov noted. “For example, a special fair has been recently organized for the development of SMEs and the provision of support to this sphere. Establishment of cooperation between ABAD and entrepreneurs is a continuation of these measures. Our goal is to inform the general public about the opportunities being created by ABAD and help entrepreneurs increase the range of products.”
He added that the products manufactured by SMEs are sufficiently competitive and the ministry will continue supporting their export.
Encouraging self-employment has been determined as a perspective business task in Azerbaijan and the government does its best to create conditions and opportunities to supports entrepreneurship in the country.
Thus, in September 2016, ABAD under the State Agency for Public Service and Social Innovations operating under the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan (ASAN) was created in order to support the active participation of citizens in the social and economic development of Azerbaijan, the development of small and medium-sized enterprises (SME), increase of employment of the population.
Moreover, in order to support entrepreneurship the government creates many other conditions as, issuance of the investment incentives documents following the approval of amendments proposed to the Tax Code of the country.
Under the investment incentives document, half of the revenue of an individual entrepreneur, profits of legal entity are exempted from income tax for seven years. Import of equipment for the implementation of the projects is also exempt of VAT and customs duties.
Also, the state refunds 3-6 percent of the customs value of goods to non-oil exporters within the framework of mechanisms on promoting exports of non-oil products.
It is also planned to create the Agency of Small and Medium Enterprises and the Guarantee Credit Fund in 2017-2018.
Besides, there is the National Fund for Entrepreneurship Support (NFES) under the Economy Ministry that has been operating since 1992 to provide preferential loans from the state budget for small and medium business in an effort to develop entrepreneurship in the Republic of Azerbaijan.