Investment and Development Agency of Latvia

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Investment and Development Agency of Latvia
Latvijas Investīciju un attīstības aģentūra
Investment and Development Agency of Latvia logo.png
Agency overview
Formed September 1993
Jurisdiction Latvia
Headquarters Pērses iela 2, Riga
Employees 270
Agency executive
Parent agency Ministry of Economics (Latvia)
Website liaa.gov.lv/eng

The Investment and Development Agency of Latvia (LIAA; Latvian: Latvijas Investīciju un attīstības aģentūra) is a government agency responsible for promoting business development in Latvia by facilitating the growth of foreign investment and increasing the competitiveness of Latvian entrepreneurs in domestic and foreign markets.[1] LIAA also administers EU Structural Funds for promoting business and encouraging the formation of new enterprises.[2] The agency is overseen by the Ministry of Economics of the Republic of Latvia.[3] Since 2004, the Director of LIAA is Andris Ozols.

History[edit]

LIAA was established on September 7, 1993, by the Ministry of Economics of the Republic of Latvia. The agency was originally known as the Latvian Development Agency, but was reorganized into the Investment and Development Agency of Latvia (Latvijas investīciju un attīstības aģentūra, in Latvian) in 2004. Over the last two decades the number of employees at LIAA has grown from 10 to more than 200.[4]

Aims[edit]

In order to attract foreign direct investment to Latvia and promote foreign trade, LIAA supports companies in Latvia trading internationally as well as overseas enterprises seeking business partners or locations in Latvia.[5] To meet both these objectives, LIAA administers the State Support Programmes for Entrepreneurs, co-financed from EU Structural Funds.[6]

LIAA is also involved in the implementation of national programs for export and the promotion of innovation, and takes part in projects under EU 7th Framework Programmes.[7]

Working in close cooperation with the business community, particularly with the Foreign Investors Council in Latvia (FICIL), the National Economic Council, and industry associations, LIAA facilitates the steady improvement of the business environment, particularly in the area of administrative procedures.

The main fields of activity[edit]

Support for business start-up[edit]

LIAA collects information and provide consultancy on various business start-up issues, for example, how to design and develop business ideas, how to prepare a business plan, how to register a company or what support you can get from the state. LIAA will provide answers also to other questions related to business start-up.

European Union funds[edit]

LIAA implements the functions of cooperation institutions for European Union (EU) fund administration. LIAA provides enforcement of EU fund support program co-financed by the state, provides the information on existing and planned activities, provides the admission of project submission, evaluation, contracting, payments and project monitoring. During the period of 2014–2020, LIAA is implementing the following EU fund support programs:

Innovation motivation program aims to inform and encourage the public to initiate innovative business as a promotional mechanism including the allocation of prizes. Informing the public of developments related to innovation and its potential, it is encouraging society and entrepreneurs to focus on innovative solutions for development and use, as well as an increased proportion of innovative entrepreneurs in economics and motivated business launch of smart specialization strategies of Latvia in specific priorities of the specialization.

Business incubator project aims to support creating new, viable and competitive entrepreneurs and development of the regions of Latvia, providing individuals (for the authors of business ideas) which are or are going to carry out an economic activity, a tiny (micro), small and medium-sized enterprise business required consultation, training, and events about general business issues, mentor support, environment (space) and grant co-financing of operating costs of entrepreneurs.

Start-up activity support project aims to promote the formation of start-ups in Latvia, thus promoting research, as well as innovative ideas, products, or use of processes in economic activities (commercialization of research products).

"Voucher" innovation support services program aims to promote innovation activity in tiny (micro), small and medium-sized enterprises with technology transfer in support of new or significantly improved product or technology development that provides contribution to smart specialization of Latvia in the attainment of the strategy goals.

Contributing to achieving the Latvian smart specialization strategy goals, "support for the commercialization of research results" project aims to support research organization's commercialization of research results both in Latvia and abroad, to increase research organization income from the commercialization of research results or to turn the research results into successful business.

The promotion of international competitiveness aims to promote the international competitiveness of the sectors, supporting businesses and their entry into foreign markets, providing representation of Latvia's foreign economic activities and developing Latvia as a tourist destination of international competitiveness in the priority sectors of tourism (business and events tourism, tourism for wellness).

Support for ICT (information communication technology) and non-technological training, as well as training to promote attraction of investors and investments by providing support for foreign investors in the provision of qualified labor.

Norwegian financial instrument[edit]

The Ministry of Economics in cooperation with LIAA and Norway's State-owned enterprise "Innovation Norway" implements the Norwegian financial instrument co-financed program for the planning period of 2009-2014 "Innovation in "green" production area", whose purpose is to increase "green" entrepreneur competitiveness for increasing "green" innovation and promote "green" businesses by supporting formation of new businesses in technology-intensive sectors, and in the entrepreneurs of innovative businesses.

Enterprise Europe network[edit]

LIAA is also home to the Latvian branch of Enterprise Europe network. EEN is the largest network of contact points providing information and advice to EU companies on EU matters, in particular small and medium enterprises (SMEs).[8] In addition to Latvia, the network offers concrete and effective solutions to entrepreneurs and companies in more than 50 countries, including the 28 EU member states, two EU candidate countries, members of the European Economic Area (EEA), and other participating countries.

External marketing[edit]

LIAA spreads information abroad about the Latvian economy, sectors, companies, projects, products and services. LIAA makes direct marketing campaign on investment and cooperation opportunities in certain sectors before and during international exhibitions. LIAA organizes entrepreneur visits in foreign countries within the visits of senior officials, business days, trade missions and stock market fair of entrepreneurs. LIAA provides searching for potential cooperation partners abroad, establishes contact and organizes the business visits with the potential cooperation partners and investors.

Latvian Export-Import Directory[edit]

LIAA administrates the free export-oriented information on-line database EXIM.[9] The goal of the directory is to provide an online exchange of information about import and export facilities for Latvian and foreign entrepreneurs.[10]

EXIM helps to:

  • Promote products on Latvia's business-to-business website;[11]
  • Create an online business proposal and advertise products;[12]
  • Find new business partners;
  • Access business news from Latvia;
  • Get market info on Latvian economic industries and trade.[13]
  • Find business events in Latvia and foreign countries.

Search for suppliers[edit]

The agency also provides assistance in finding appropriate Latvian suppliers and in increasing their competitiveness.[14] These services include:

  • Provision of information on Latvian export companies, products, and services;
  • Search for Latvian suppliers according to buyers’ requests;
  • Distribution of incoming business proposals to Latvian companies;
  • Organization of trade seminars and foreign trade missions to Latvia;
  • Consultancy and foreign market studies for Latvian enterprises;
  • Assistance to Latvian companies at various international exhibitions and trade missions, export promotion campaigns, and business matchmaking;

Follow-up service[edit]

LIAA provides follow-up services and support after the implementation of investment or sub-contracting projects.

State support programs[edit]

LIAA implements a number of state support programs available for companies registered in Latvia, advancing grants for participation in international exhibitions and trade missions, consultancy, modernization of business-related infrastructure, development of new products and technologies, and increasing the qualifications of employees.[15]

Foreign representatives[edit]

LIAA has an extensive network of foreign representatives around the world and a cooperative network with other institutions both in Latvia and abroad, which takes the agency close to its customers and links them to markets, business partners, and locations.[16]

At the moment, LIAA representative offices are located in the 19 countries: United States, the United Arab Emirates, Belarus, Denmark, France, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Russia, China (Beijing, Shanghai, and Ningbo), the United Kingdom, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Singapore, Finland, Germany and Sweden.

Whereas the public representatives abroad currently work in Azerbaijan, Egypt, India, South Asia, Cameroon, Switzerland, Liechtenstein and Thailand.

LIAA works in close cooperation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Latvia and the diplomats who are responsible for economic issues in more than 50 countries.[17]

LIAA's foreign representatives provide information about business opportunities in Latvia, relevant legislation, the taxation system, the national economy, and external trade. They promote and facilitate cooperation between Latvian companies and businesses in the particular country or region, and assist in finding cooperation partners.[18]

Cooperation with other institutions[edit]

LIAA works in close cooperation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and diplomatic missions represented in 75 countries around the world. LIAA also cooperates with local municipalities and regional development agencies.

Latvian Export-Import Directory[edit]

LIAA administrates the free export-oriented information on-line database EXIM.[19] The goal of the directory is to provide an online exchange of information about import and export facilities for Latvian and foreign entrepreneurs.[20]

EXIM helps to:

Recognition[edit]

World Association of Investment Promotion Agencies[edit]

In 2005 LIAA received the highest recognition of its professional activity. The World Association of Investment Promotion Agencies (WAIPA) acknowledged LIAA as the best investment promotion agency in Central and Eastern Europe by awarding it the status of World Class Agency. This status is acquired in the fierce competition among 164 investment and development agencies around the world[25] In 2008, at the annual international WAIPA conference in Accra, Ghana, LIAA once again received an award from WAIPA for promoting investment-friendly state policy. LIAA earned an international recognition for the close cooperation with the Foreign Investors' Council in Latvia and the activities carried out for the business environment improvement.[26]

World Bank[edit]

In 2009, the World Bank rated LIAA one of the top 10 performing national Investment Promotion Intermediaries (IPIs) in the world, according to the Global Investment Promotion Benchmarking Summary Report published in May 2009.[27] The agency placed 7th out of 213 national and sub-national IPIs, outperforming many agencies from high-income countries such as Australia, United States, Ireland, Finland, Spain, and Czech Republic.

References[edit]

  1. ^ https://web.archive.org/web/20120502001915/http://www.liaa.gov.lv/eng/home/about_us/activities/. Archived from the original on May 2, 2012. Retrieved August 1, 2012.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  2. ^ https://web.archive.org/web/20120709001137/http://www.liaa.gov.lv/eng/invest_in_latvia/state_aid_programmes_for_20072/. Archived from the original on July 9, 2012. Retrieved August 1, 2012.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  3. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-08-28. Retrieved 2012-08-11. 
  4. ^ http://www.liaa.gov.lv/?object_id=1970
  5. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-06-15. Retrieved 2012-08-02. 
  6. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-07-09. Retrieved 2012-08-01. 
  7. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-05-02. Retrieved 2012-08-11. 
  8. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-06-25. Retrieved 2012-08-02. 
  9. ^ Latvian Export Import Directory
  10. ^ http://www.exim.lv/?object_id=5237
  11. ^ http://www.exim.lv/?module=companies&do=show_company_list
  12. ^ http://www.exim.lv/?module=proposals&object_id=5234
  13. ^ http://www.exim.lv/?object_id=5252
  14. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-05-02. Retrieved 2012-08-01. 
  15. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-07-09. Retrieved 2012-08-01. 
  16. ^ http://www.liaa.gov.lv/eng/offices/offices/
  17. ^ http://www.liaa.gov.lv/eng/offices/public_representatives/
  18. ^ http://www.liaa.gov.lv/eng/offices/offices/
  19. ^ Latvian Export Import Directory
  20. ^ http://www.exim.lv/?object_id=5237
  21. ^ http://www.exim.lv/?module=companies&do=show_company_list
  22. ^ http://www.exim.lv/?module=proposals&object_id=5234
  23. ^ http://www.exim.lv/?object_id=5252
  24. ^ http://www.exim.lv/?module=events&object_id=5235
  25. ^ http://www.baltic-course.com/eng/investments/?doc=1196
  26. ^ http://www.baltic-course.com/eng/investments/?doc=1196
  27. ^ http://www.ifc.org/ifcext/fias.nsf/AttachmentsByTitle/GIPB2009/$FILE/GIPB2009.SummaryReport.pdf

External links[edit]

See also[edit]