- Foreign Trade Zones/Free Trade Zones –As a member of the Central African Customs Union (UDEAC), the Republic of the Congo belongs to a Free Trade Zone which includes Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Equatorial Guinea and Gabon. Within this zone, imports are subject to very low or no customs duties.
The CEMAC Zone is also considered as a preferential trade area, for Congo and other member countries. There are no Foreign Trade Zones or Free Ports established in the country, however, this project is currently under consideration by the Ministry of Commerce.
- Bilateral Investment Agreements –Commercial and bilateral agreements to safeguard investments exist with the United States (US), France and China several African nations, including South Africa and Namibia.
- Protection of Property Rights – As amember of CEMAC, Congo is automatically a member of the African Intellectual Property Organisation (AIPO). AIPO is charged with issuing a single copyright system which is enforceable in all CEMAC member states. As a member of the
World Trade Organisation (WTO), Congo is conforming its legislation to trade-related aspects governing intellectual property.Right to Private Ownership and Establishment – The Republic of the Congo guarantees the legal right and freedom of private business to:
- Import or export raw materials or products, equipment and materials necessary for economic activity.
- Define their own production, commercial and hiring policies.
- Select suppliers and customers and set prices.
Given these guarantees, the Republic of the Congo is one of the most progressive and open economies in the Central African region to encourage and promote foreign private business development.
- Dispute Settlement – The Republic of the Congo is a member of the WTO and is party to other DTAs governing trade and commerce. Binding international arbitration of investment disputes is accepted.
- Conversion and Transfer Policies – Funds are freely transferred within the French franc Zone and there are no restrictions on importing foreign capital into Republic of the Congo.
- Openness to Foreign Investment – The Investment Charter offers a range of advantages to foreign investors such as free enterprise, no discrimination or disqualification on types of investment, and equal justice under Congolese law.
The judicial system upholds the sanctity of contracts; parties also may appeal to foreign or international justice courts for any necessary relief.
- The Investment Charter provides some tax reductions for companies exercising a new activity.
- The Tax Code provides tax reductions for farm businesses.
- Specific Codes (i.e. Mining Code,Hydrocarbons Code, and Forestry Code) also provide various tax incentives (and exemptions).