Law on strategic investment to boost country’s investment cycle

World News Agencies By Yael • 14 January, 2020

By: MIA

A draft-law on strategic investment, which is fully in line with EU directives and favors fast-tracked investment in North Macedonia, is set to enter parliamentary procedure on Tuesday.

This law, for the first time in the country, aims to stimulate, attract and create conditions for implementing strategic investment, as well as promote economic growth, employment, use of new technology and innovation, increase competitiveness and export, decrease trade deficit and improve people’s lives.

“This law creates opportunity for a big investment cycle in the country, both at state and local levels and with direct state support because the strategic investment project may rely on state assistance in line with the law on control of state support,” Minister of Economy Kreshnik Bekteshi told a press conference on Monday.

He said he expected lawmakers to pass this law before the election is called, pointing out that in line with the law on state support, a subsidy couldn’t exceed 50 percent of an investment. According to Bekteshi, a subsidy would range from 0.1 to 50 percent depending on the potential investor’s business plan.

“The proposed strategic investments, which the government would put forward to parliament, would need to be in line with environment standards. Each strategic investment would require a “lex specialis” that would need to be passed by parliament,” Bekteshi noted.

He added that a special committee would be formed to decide over approving strategic investment projects.

Projects would need to be in the areas of energy and infrastructure, transport and telecommunications, tourism, manufacturing industry, agriculture, forestry and water economy, food industry, health, waste and waste water management, information technology zones, sports, science and education, as well as construction projects that feature these areas.

“Government by year’s end should announce a public call to which all interested investors may apply,” Bekteshi said. “The approval procedure for a strategic investment project will be implemented in a fair, transparent and non-discriminatory way with active participation of the expert and wider community, while the list of projects approved will be published on the government’s web page.”