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State favours simplifying foreigners establishing businesses in Estonia

The Estonian government at its Thursday meeting approved a plan which would allow for the use of an account located in any European Economic Area (EEA) state for establishing a private limited company in Estonia.

Minister of Justice Urmas Reinsalu (Pro Patria) submitted a proposal to the government to amend the so-called payment account bill. The aim of the bill is to promote investment by persons located abroad into Estonian private limited companies.

According to current legislation, non-residents have difficulties opening a bank account on behalf of a company in Estonia, which according to current law is the prerequisite for establishing a private limited company in ordinary procedure, the government's press office said.

In the future, it would be possible to use an account located in a bank or financial institution of any EEA state when establishing a private limited company. According to current law, only a bank account at a bank established in Estonia can be used; the account is necessary as a monetary share capital down payment will have to be transferred there when establishing a company.

The bill would not affect the establishment of public limited companies, the establishment of which still requires opening a securities account in an Estonian bank.

The amendment would also introduce the opportunity to make contributions to increase the share capital to accounts located in the aforementioned banks and financial institutions. An additional goal is to exempt from state fees the entry and changing of the business-owner's email address to the Commercial Register; according to current legislation, making changes to this entry currently involves €18 in state fees.

The new law would enter into force as planned on 1 January.


By Richard J. Witismann on 1 October, 2018