So here\’s a question: Where can I go to dodge EU environmental regulation?

So, a leetle report from the front lines of the business world. As you all know I\’m working on \’untin slags in the \’ore mountains.

A likely path through the thickets has been planned. But we\’re facing an odd little problem.

Through the various alliances we\’ve made we can work up to a certain scale without having to worry overmuch about environmental licensing. We\’re going to obey all of the laws, of course. Things like dumping into water runoff and all that: no, we know that poisoning Dresden is not the way to win friends and influence people.

So it\’s not the regulations that are the problem: this is what is. Once we get past lab/pilot plant size we\’ve then got to file vast, voluminous, plans about what we intend to do next. OK. But it takes 18 months for such plans to be \”considered\”. No, don\’t know why, it just does. Same in Germany, the UK or the Czech Republic.

And of course once we\’ve proven our process at that lab/pilot plant scale we\’d want (well, may well want to) scale it up immediately. From processing a few hundred kg a day to a few tonnes a day.

There\’s no other factory that we can take on as the processor either: no one else actually does our process. So any/everyone would face the same problem.

So, is there some country that one can actually work in (ie, not Russia or Burma etc) where there isn\’t this bureaucracy caused 18 month gap? Anyone with any bright ideas?

Anyone know anything about North Africa? Ukraine? Western Ukraine would be good actually: possibly using some small part of an extant chemicals plant.

Essentially, somewhere that\’s civilisation but without the cunts from Brussels?

24 thoughts on “So here\’s a question: Where can I go to dodge EU environmental regulation?”

  1. Trinidad? They welcome industrial activities, have their own petrochemical industry already, labour is cheap and the weather’s great. You ought to be eligible for their FTZ programme, so there’s no tax and minimal bureaucracy.

    If it helps, I think my dad-in-law’s still on the board of TTFZCo.

    http://www.ttfzco.com/free-zones-programme

  2. Welcome to the 21st century.

    And they can’t work out why the economy won’t grow.

    It’s a mystery, I say – a complete mystery.

  3. Turkey, Kurdistan

    Both places are welcoming, just be prepared for progressive incentivisation (albeit institutionalised and predictable)…..

  4. Tim

    The problem with Ukraine is that it is targeting entry into the EU, so the people you refer to and the mindset is not far removed – similar for those bits of the old Yugoslavia not already in the EU…

    This might sound ludicrous but have you thought of Belarus? – Although given a complete ‘going over’ in the Western media, if there’s money in it for them, then they might be interested – You’d need someone who could communicate in Russian but whilst the country is very bureaucratic and corrupt, they can be persuaded to look the other way – Also a reasonable mining industry from what I can see. That said, you mention Russia is out so might be off your radar.

    Other countries – in North Africa, possibly Algeria? – again having a pretty chequered past but looking to open up and engage more with the outside world – Again would need at least reasonable linguistic skills (French) but it is relatively virgin territory for business- not sure about current security situation, especially near Malian border, though – Otherwise the only country even vaguely stable is Morocco. Will have a think about it and post again later.

  5. what about Serbia, outside the EU but in the EEA, not an Asuncion country at the moment and and relatively close and well connected to where you are (you might even be able to barge it on the Danube depending on the quantities). plus the weathers pretty good, the foods ace and the lady’s easy on the eye.

  6. I know little about Algeria, but it is often rated as one of the least investor friendly countries in the world. Do your own research, of course.

  7. Isle of Man is not in the EU and would probably appreciate a bit of industry. Low taxation, little bureaucracy, able to consider special cases, little party political dogma. Worth checking.

  8. India

    Okay so they seem to think that 95% is good enough, but it’s very cheap and you can do anything with a small bribe. I’ve exported a couple of engineering plants there and to China. The latter is a nightmare – bigger bribes, a long way and they don’t speak English!

  9. Ireland.

    Go to the countryside in county Mayo, there’s lots of that. Whatever you do no one will see you. Any bureaucrats will ask you to fill in forms and then forget about them. They’ll only notice what you actually did in about 2027.

  10. Tim, you might have a serious look at Kosovo.

    EU access, uses the Euro, far as I know not with all the EU-regs that come with it.

    You’ve got google.

  11. I was in Georgia last week. I know no details at all about this kind of thing, but it felt like it might be friendly to this kind of thing. There is some oil exploration going on in parts of the country, so those might be the sorts of people you would ask about the friendliness of the governments and institutions. (There’s lots of Turkish investment in the areas near the Turkish border, too).

  12. If you want to avoid officious and unnecessary red tape, you could hardly have picked a worse country than Germany.

    The UK, maybe?

  13. “Eastern Neighbourhood – The EU is currently [November 2012] negotiating Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area as part of Association Agreements with Georgia, Armenia and Moldova.”

    http://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_MEMO-12-932_en.htm

    I don’t know how these things work, but it looks like get in quick, get something in place so that it’s grandfathered if they have to start bringing in EU-style regulations, then by the time you’re ready to sell the free trade agreement will be in place.

  14. Hi Tim,

    In sort, nowhere on this planet will you be able escape the clutches of the Green Mafia. Since what you are about to do is raping Mother Gaia. I know you have all the plans in place to be a good boy, no intention to violate Mother Gaia, but a seduction. Tough!

    Just have a look at the delays my old company AA Plc. had in Brazil.

    In these god for shaken places the Green NGOs have the government eating out of their hands, convincing them that going Green is the right thing to do. Do not develop, and all the money from the Green Taxes – ring a bell arshole? – will be available pretty soon to be dished out to keep the peasants happy!

    That is why commodities has only one way to go but up, and have 95% of my investments in Natural Resources (Miners)!

  15. The obviously thought to my mind is the good ol usa… pick your state carefully (i’d suggest a southern one like Texas) and it could all be fairly cool. In a similar vein – canada might also be a go-er?

  16. Yeah, the good ol USA, don’t pick Alaska. Have you noticed how they want to stop the development of Pebble copper mine, even before the envirnomental assessment plan have been logged with the authorities?

    The EPA is spreading its reach with the passing of each day, and you can forget about the states and their regulations.

    Pick a country with a dictator in charge, like North Korea or Zimbabwe, and make sure you keep feeding the greedy paws of the dictator.

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