Klaipėda city is a county and municipal centre and ranks third in Lithuania in terms of its size. It is the only seaport in Lithuania which is the most northern Baltic seaport and the only year-round ice-free port in the eastern Baltics.
Klaipėda is developing intensively as a port city with a high quality of life as well as an attractive natural environment. It is an industrial, business, educational, scientific, cultural, health, sports, and recreational administrative center with rich traditions.
The collaboration between the city and the port of Klaipėda is the basis for successful and mutually beneficial development. The port city has favourable conditions for foreign investment as well as initiatives related to new employment opportunities in the fields of modern production and business, especially ones related to the maritime complex.
Klaipeda city provides an industrial cite known as Klaipeda Free Economic Zone with attractive tax incentives. The city has designated and prepared engineering plans for a sufficient number of development sites for future growth. Klaipeda FEZ has attracted more than 246 million EUR investments during the period 2002 to 2008.
The demographic situation of Klaipėda city is stable as the population is consistently increasing, which is primarily due to the migration from Klaipėda county and other regions of Western Lithuania.
The following industries are being developed in the County: shipbuilding, technical repair and maintenance, construction materials, wood-processing, food, tobacco, etc. In the service sector, the dominant activities are: finance and banking, telecommunication services, and the transport business. The main products produced in Klaipėda County are meat, fish and milk products, bread, confectionery, beer, cigarettes, clothes, furniture, paper and pasteboard, automotive wiring and cable kits, ship fittings and parts, oil, feed stuff for cats and dogs, bricks, roofing, ropes, flax fibre and peat. There are non-traditional industrial branches developed in the County as well, such as wind energy, geothermic water energy, sapropel mining and pisciculture.
The employees of Klaipėda county create almost 12% of Lithuania’s GDP, and generate 14% of the country’s overall export. The main foreign trade partners of companies working in this county are Latvia, Germany, the United Kingdom, Russia, Poland and Denmark.
At the beginning of 2009, there were 6205 economic entities in operation in the city of Klaipėda A large number of these businesses were engaged in wholesale and retail trade (23.7%), while other groups benefited from growth in real estate and renting (20.1%), transport and warehousing (10.9%), construction (10.1%) and social service activities (19.4%).
Most of the companies in Klaipėda City by legal form are joint stock companies and individual enterprises. By number of employees, most of the companies are ranked as micro companies – 76.9% of the entire number of companies (4548 companies with up to 10 employees), small companies are in second place with 17.5% (1038 companies with up to 50 employees), medium -sized companies account for 4.8% (282 companies with up to 250 employees), and large companies account for ~0.7% (39 companies). There are 5 large enterprises exceeding 1000 employees.
The continued increase in foreign direct investments has demonstrated the attractiveness of Klaipėda county as an investment destination. On January 1, 2009 foreign direct investment in the county amounted to 897 million EUR, reflecting a 7 percent increase over the previous year. Direct foreign investment in the county of Klaipėda accounts for 9.8 percent of the entire foreign direct investment in the country.
International companies such as Mars, Philip Morris, Yazaki, Indorama, Neo Group, Odense Steel Shipyard, and many other international and local corporations are attracted to Klaipėda’s friendly business environment, ice-free general cargo port, the Klaipėda Free Economic Zone, and its great connections to the east and west.
Due to its favourable geographical position, Klaipėda has become a transit gateway for both east-west and north-south trade. The city offers very attractive and efficient cargo delivery solutions, allowing businesses to transport goods quickly and cost-effectively. Two large capacity cargo trains – Mercury (container train) and Viking (container and contrailer train) – start their journey in Klaipėda and head toward several eastern destinations.
Klaipėda State Seaport
The Port of Klaipeda is the northernmost ice–free port on the eastern coast of the Baltic Sea. It is the most important and largest Lithuanian transport hub, connecting sea, land and railway routes from the east to the west.
Klaipėda is a multipurpose, deep–water port providing high quality services. The depth of the entrance channel is 15.5 m., and the depth of the navigation channel is 13-14.5 m. The port can accommodate tankers up to 100 000 DWT and bulk carriers up to 80 000 DWT. 15 large stevedoring companies, ship-repair and shipbuilding yards operate in the port.
Thanks to its convenient geopolitical situation, well-developed infrastructure and excellent services, cargo turnover has been consistently increasing. During January-August 2009, almost 18 million tons of cargo was handled in Klaipeda port.
The port and its activity are of utmost importance to the country, the region and the city: over 800 companies are involved in port business. The maritime sector provides more than 23 000 jobs and approximately 170 000 ancillary jobs.
The most ambitious long-term port expansion project is the construction of a deep-water (up to 17 m. depth) avant-port, which will definitely increase the port’s competitiveness.
Klaipeda‘s Free Economic Zone (FEZ) provides clients with a unique opportunity for business development by offering industrial sites with physical and/or legal infrastructure, support services, and tax incentives. The FEZ Management Company provides clients with complete, individualized start-up services, making the setting up of business exceptionally easy.
Klaipeda’s Free Economic Zone is a major industrial site offering attractive tax incentives and a fully prepared infrastructure. Klaipeda’s Free Economic Zone was identified in the European Union Transport Infrastructure Needs Assessment (TINA) programme as a site for the establishment of a logistic centre, forming part of a European-wide network of such centres.
FEZ incentives include:
• 6 years’ exemption from corporate income tax, 50% reduction for the following years,
Klaipeda’s Free Economic Zone (FEZ) covers 412 ha. The site is flat and is conveniently located near the port, the motorway, and the rail network.
Currently, 14 companies function in FEZ employing over 3000 workers. The total sum of companies’ investments is almost 1 billion Lt. and serves as the best indicator of the best growth area in Lithuania.
In Klaipeda’s Free Economic Zone there are companies from various industry sectors: electronics, fish processing, logistics, biofuel, packaging, textiles and cleanliness, PET manufacturing.
Premises are currently available to lease from 30m2 to 2000m2 in Klaipeda Business Park, located in the Free Economic Zone.
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