Press Releases

IFC’s Advice Helps Belarus Government Improve Opportunities for Entrepreneurs

In Minsk:
Nadezhda Sinelnik        
Phone: + 375 172 28 17 79                
Phone: + 375 172 22 74 40

In Moscow:
Nezhdana Bukova
Phone: + 7 495 411 7555

Minsk, Belarus, February 2, 2009—IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, helped the government of Belarus conduct a major reform of business registration and liquidation procedures, making it significantly easier for people to start their own businesses and improve their lives.

A new presidential decree that took effect on February 1 reflects recommendations proposed to the Ministry of Justice by IFC Advisory Services’ Business Enabling Environment program. The IFC advisory program in Belarus is operated with financial support from the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency.

The decree will reduce the processing time for business registrations to one day from five days, eliminate start-up capital requirements for most businesses, and cut the number of documents needed for registrations. It also abolished the requirement that businesses list all planned activities and simplified procedures for closing businesses.

“The registration Decree is one of the most liberal legislative acts in Belarus,” said Yaroslav Romanchuk, President of the Scientific Research Mises Center. “The proposed changes are truly revolutionary and will improve the business environment. Thanks to this reform, Belarus has a chance to improve its Doing Business rating significantly.” Last year, Belarus sharply improved its global ranking on the overall ease of doing business, moving up to 85 from 115. “New registration reforms will improve the Belarus rating even more,” Romanchuk said.

Belarus became a member of IFC in November 1992. At the invitation of the government, IFC has been involved in advisory work in the country since 1993. To date, IFC has implemented a range of advisory projects and has committed over $150 million in the local financial, agribusiness, and retail sectors.

About IFC
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, creates opportunity for people to escape poverty and improve their lives. We foster sustainable economic growth in developing countries by supporting private sector development, mobilizing private capital, and providing advisory and risk mitigation services to businesses and governments. Our new investments totaled $16.2 billion in fiscal 2008, a 34 percent increase over the previous year. For more information, visit