Starting your business

Latvia is ranked as the number one start-up friendly country in the world (Sifted, 2021). Also, the latest rankings for trade freedom around the world by the Heritage Foundation – the Index of Economic Freedom, demonstrate a strong correlation between trade freedom and several positive indicators, for example, economic prosperity, low poverty rates, and clean environments.

The Index of Economic Freedom 2022, measuring the impact of liberty and free markets, placed Latvia in the 18th place of the world’s most free economies.

Setting up a company

All companies must be registered in the Commercial Register. For companies to achieve legal status, their founders shall prepare and submit to the Register of Enterprises: a foundation agreement or decision of foundation (in case of a single founder), articles of association, and confirmation of legal address, together with receipts that confirm payment of registration duty and for the publication of an announcement in the official newspaper, Latvijas VÄ“stnesis.

Registration duty depends on the chosen form of business. The Register of Enterprises undertakes to review applications and register companies within three days or within one working day (if one pays three times higher fee).

Companies can be registered in just one working day!

For more detailed information, please look into the Business Guide or contact the Investment team. 

Forms of business

The forms of business differ mainly in terms of the volume of fixed capital, the liability of economic operators and the distribution of profits. Before choosing the legal form of the business, consult the accountant or the State Revenue Service regarding the desired tax treatment. The decision will also be facilitated by an assistant in choosing the form of economic activity established by Swedbank Finance Institute with the support of the Enterprise Register and the State Revenue Service.

There are several types of legal entities stipulated in Latvia’s Commercial Law:

Representative offices, similar to branches, are not independent legal entities. Representative offices cannot perform economic activities, and their functions are limited to market research, promotion of the parent company, and other limited marketing activities.
The most popular form of business by far is Ltd.

Equal treatment of foreign investors

Latvia offers an open and attractive environment for business. By law, foreign investors have the same rights and duties as local investors. The foreign investor may be the sole founder of a company and may request a temporary residence permit. Foreign companies registered in Latvia are also entitled to buy land and property. 




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