Company Incorporation in Latvia - Trading With Russia & Ukraine
Positioned at the crossroads of northern and eastern Europe, the Baltic state of Latvia is rapidly making the most of its status as a member of the EU. Foreign investment is rising strongly and Latvian authorities have taken steps to streamline the regulations governing company formation. The range of possible business entities has been reduced, bringing the commercial landscape more into line with established EU standards.
What are the main types of company in Latvia?
There are four main kinds of business entity for foreign investors, and they are as follows:
- limited liability company (SIA)
- joint stock company (A/S)
- branch office
- representative office
REQUIREMENTS FOR SIA
- Minimum share capital to be deposited: €3090, at least half to be paid up.
- Minimum directors: one required and must be a private person.
- No restrictions on foreign shareholders or directors (shareholders can be corporate or private entities)
- Registered office address (PO Box are not allowed)
- A visit to Latvia is necessary to sign documents with the Notary and forms for the bank account. Please contact us for alternative arrangements if an initial visit is not possible.
What are the main features of an A/S joint stock company?
- popular format for larger companies that wish to raise public capital
- minimum share capital is €35,572 which must be fully paid up before registration
- two-tier system comprising management and supervisory boards
- accounts to be audited and filed with authorities
What are the main features of a branch office?
- foreign-owned branch taxed at same rate as Latvian company
- reporting and audit requirements are same as for Latvian companies
- profits can be repatriated without withholding tax
- dividends transferred abroad are subject to 10% withholding tax
What are the main features of a representative office?
- representative offices are not allowed to trade or do business
- they are only permitted to advertise and promote their company
- regarded as an effective low-cost means of establishing a presence
How easy is it to recruit staff in Latvia?
Latvia’s economic success since the end of the Soviet era owes much to the motivation of its young, go-getting workforce. Latvians have enthusiastically embraced free-market reforms, and labor costs - although on the rise - remain generally low. There are a number of recommended recruitment agencies in the capital, Riga, and we would be happy to put you in touch with them.
For more information on this and any other issues regarding company formation in Latvia including trading with Russia and Ukraine, contact us on 0033 (0)1 53 57 49 10 or email us from our contact page and we’ll be happy to help.