LEGAL BASE OF BUSINESS IN TURKMENISTAN
In today's situation, special importance is given to the creation of a favourable legal climate for investment activities. It would be appropriate to mention the normative legal base regulating investment activities in the country. In particular, it includes the following laws of Turkmenistan:
2) On Investment Activities
3) On Hydrocarbons
4) On Foreign Investments
5) On Currency Regulation
6) On the Economic Free Entrepreneurship Zone, and
7) On Foreign Concessions
I would like to address in more detail Turkmenistan Law No. 184-III On Foreign Investments, dated 3 March 2008, which establishes the legal foundation for the activities of foreign investors and enterprises with foreign investment on the territory of Turkmenistan, and which is aimed at the attraction and effective utilisation of foreign investments in Turkmenistan.
The following are the most important aspects of the Law:
Forms of foreign investments in Turkmenistan:
1) shared participation in enterprises, together with Turkmenistan legal entities and physical persons;
2) creation of enterprises wholly owned by foreign investors or branches of foreign legal entities, or acquisition of existing enterprises;
3) acquisition of movable and immovable property, with the exception of property restricted in terms of its trade turnover in accordance with Turkmenistan legislation;
4) granting foreign loans and credits;
5) acquisition of property and non-property rights established by the legislation of Turkmenistan.
Foreign investors and enterprises with foreign investment are granted the national legal regime. The national legal regime means that the legal regime for the activities of foreign investors and enterprises with foreign investments, and the legal regime for the use of the profit received from investment may not be less favourable than the legal regime for the activities and the use of the profit received from investment that is granted to national investors.
The legal regime for foreign investment and the activity of foreign investors related to making such investments may not be less favourable than the regime of investment activity for legal entities and individuals of Turkmenistan.
Property imported into Turkmenistan as a foreign investor's contribution to the charter fund of an enterprise with foreign investment, to the fixed assets of a branch of a foreign legal entity in accordance with the list established by law, is exempt from customs duties.
Enterprises with foreign investment, branches of foreign legal entities, have the right to export products (work, services) of their own production and to import products (work, services) for their own needs with a licence.
Foreign individuals and stateless persons, their representatives, representatives of foreign legal entities, international organisations and foreign states acting as foreign investors, nationals of foreign states working for enterprises with foreign investment, for the branches and representative offices of foreign legal entities and their family members staying in Turkmenistan in connection with investment activities have the right to receive multiple visas for a term of not less than a year.
Disputes arising in connection with foreign investments in the territory of Turkmenistan are resolved through negotiations or through their consideration at the Arachy Kazyet of Turkmenistan or by agreement of the parties–by arbitration, i.e. the law does not provide for application of Turkmenistan law under contracts with foreign investors; by mutual agreement of the parties the applicable law and arbitration may be the law and arbitration of a third country.