LATVIA

Logistic and forwarding services in Latvia

Latvia

Capital City
Riga

Population
2,1 Mio

National languages
Latvian

Currency
Euro (EUR)

Gross national product (GNP)
USD 32 Mrd

GNP per person
USD 15‘729

Financial exports to Switzerland
CHF 138 Mio

Financial imports from Switzerland
CHF 50 Mio

Bilateral relations between Switzerland and Latvia

Political relations between Switzerland and Latvia have traditionally been good. Various congresses which led up to Latvia’s first declaration of independence were held in Switzerland. In addition, in the first few years following independence, Latvia received Swiss support as part of its programme of cooperation with Eastern Europe. Latvia is one of the beneficiary countries of the Swiss contribution to the enlarged EU.

Economic cooperation

Since Latvia joined the EU in 2004, bilateral trade has been based on the free trade agreement between Switzerland and the EU. The volume of trade amounted to almost CHF 190 million in 2014.

 

Business language

Latvian, Russian, limited German and English.

Dimensions and weights

Metric system.

Currency

National currency since 01/01/2014: €
ISO code: EUR

Customs tariff

Harmonised system, customs clearance based on the transaction value since September 1997.

Import control

EU goods are freely available. Signed, standard invoices with an indication of the origin are necessary for the declaration of non-EU goods, with the weight of each individual pack type to be indicated separately.
The Latvian Language Law states that any documents submitted to the authorities in a foreign language must be accompanied by a certified translation.
Standard VAT rate: 21% (reduced rate: 12%).
Reimbursement of VAT paid is possible.

Terms of payment and tenders

Efforts should be made to ensure payment in advance, where applicable based on a letter of credit; bartering is often required. Tenders submitted at the tenderer’s discretion. In the case of state export guarantees for Swiss exports, there are possibilities of cover after a careful examination of the individual case.
Correspondence and brochures should be in English or German; Russian is problematic due to historical issues.

Designations of origin

Usual markings. In the case of foods and luxury foods, the country of origin and the expiry date must be indicated in Latvian.

Packaging

There are standard and labelling regulations for many goods, particularly foods, cosmetics, plants, animals and alcohols. The weights of individual pack types must always be indicated separately in the invoice.
The EU Directive sets out that packaging materials made of wood must be manufactured from round logs. This EU regulation goes beyond the necessary treatment set out in the ISPM 15 standard.

Product samples

Duty free (a condition for this is that the item is exported again within one year).