During the seminar we will be speaking about what is employer branding and coaching, which are the best practices for keeping employees in your organisation and many other interesting topics. We welcome you to participate!
A while ago, the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communication proposed establishing a road tax on Estonian and foreign vehicles that weigh over 12 tons. Back then, the Chamber agreed to support the proposal only provided that the entire tax revenue received would be used for management of state roads and local roads. The Ministry has informed the Chamber that this condition will be introduced into the draft act. However, so far, the Chamber’s proposal to decrease the fee rates has not been taken into account.
The Chamber is against the proposal of the trade unions to allow for establishing more flexible guard time conditions (time, payment) with only extended collective agreements. In the Chamber’s opinion, this proposal serves only the interests of trade unions, but does not solve today’s problem. Additionally, the applicable provision for extending collective agreements contradicts the Constitution. Therefore the Chamber considers it necessary to establish more flexible guard time conditions in the Employment Contracts Act.
The Chamber does not support the state’s plan to impose for entrepreneurs the packaging excise duty on bringing to the market because in the Chamber’s opinion, it does not help the environmental goals set in the law’s drafting intentions. On the contrary, establishing a new tax places excessive administrative and tax burden on entrepreneurs, increases the probability of avoiding the law and is primarily meant for filling the state treasury.
Entrepreneurs have been interested in knowing which taxes must be paid and what should be kept in mind when a personal vehicle is used for business purposes.
The Chamber has sent an opinion to the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communication in regarding the drafted plan to start taxing the use of roads by trucks. Namely, the state is planning to start collecting a time-based road use fee from trucks that weigh over 12 tons. The Chamber is ready to support such plan of the state, provided that the entire revenue from such fee is used for road maintenance and development of road transport. This solution is an opportunity to increase financing of road maintenance by an additional 16 million euros per year. Additionally, the Chamber is of the opinion that the annual rates of the road use fee should be lower than planned and promote the use of environmentally friendly trucks.
The Chamber has sent a letter to Prime Minister Jüri Ratas expressing concern over the quality of legislative drafting. The Chamber reminds the government that the principles of good legislative drafting are very important in a democratic country because they facilitate achieving a more open, transparent and knowledge-based governance.
Shanghai is one of the most important and lively business areas in China. This is a global financial and transport centre – home to one of the largest ports in the world. That is why Shanghai is one of the important gateways to goods exported to China as well as a great destination from where to start finding partners for your company in order to enter the Chinese market.
The Parliament passed two draft acts amending significantly the Aliens Act. As a result of the amendments, the possibilities for foreign entrepreneurs for receiving a residence permit for operating in Estonia will be expanded. Furthermore, the salary conditions for foreign workers will become more unified and the conditions for short-term employment in Estonia will become more flexible.
Over 300 legal acts entered into force on 1 January, among them those that have positive effect on entrepreneurs as well as those that influence businesses in a negative manner. Good news for small businesses is that drawing up of the annual report will become simpler. Accommodation companies should be happy to know that the plan to increase the value added tax for accommodation services has been set aside. The negative amendments are mostly related to tax laws. The government has made a last minute decision not to decrease the social tax by 0.5 percent. Additionally, from new year the excise duty of natural gas will increase by 20 percent and the excise duty on diesel fuel and petrol will be increased by 10 percent from 1 February.
The Ambassador of Canada to the Baltic States, H.E. Mr Alain Hausser will be speaking in Tallinn about the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement Between Canada and the European Union (CETA).
The government said that they support our proposal to release from the immigration quota these aliens who have received the residence permit of major investor, i.e. invested at least one million euros in Estonian economy. We are only glad, because such change gives a positive signal to the public as well as potential investors that foreign investors are welcome in Estonia.
The Estonian Chamber of Commerce and Industry celebrated its 91st anniversary on 10 November. At the reception gala, the Chamber introduced its newly published book Leading Brands of Estonia.
The Chamber of Commerce informed the Ministry of Social Affairs of supporting the amendment of the Employment Contracts Act, making the on-call time regulation more flexible for the employees of the ICT sector. At the same time we proposed that the more flexible on-call time rules should also be foreseen for other areas of activity where 24-hour unhindered work is required (e.g. air traffic controllers).
Participating in a Contact Visit gives entrepreneurs an excellent chance to discover new business opportunities. The Chamber in cooperation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs will be organising high level visits to Kenya and Vietnam in November and December. The visits will be led by Väino Reinart, Deputy Secretary General of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The title of the Company of the Year 2016 was awarded to the engineering industry company Hekotek AS at the award ceremony for the Best Estonian Companies 2016 held on 13 October. The gala for the best companies is organised by the Estonian Employers’ Confederation, Enterprise Estonia (EAS) and Estonian Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
For the second consecutive year, the Young Entrepreneur Award 2016 was given out at the award ceremony for the best Estonian companies of the year. This year’s winner is Markus Villig, the founder and CEO of Taxify.
The Ministry of Social Affairs informed that they are planning to move on with the previously initiated plan to establish a sugar tax on sweetened beverages. We have been and still are of the opinion that establishing a sugar tax is an inefficient method for decreasing the consumption of “unhealthy” food and this does not serve the goal set by the Ministry.