The Chamber for Commercial Relations with the Confederation of Independent States, which was set up by the Economic Chamber of the Czech Republic as a special chamber of commerce, was established in March 1997. The articles of association of the CIS Chamber were approved by the Minister of Industry and Trade. The chamber is an independent legal entity and its members are natural Czech persons and Czech legal entities.
The presidium is the executive and statutory body of the CIS Chamber and it has 9 members who are elected by the general assembly, which is made up of the natural persons and legal entities which are ordinary members of the chamber. The executive director is also a member of the presidium. From the beginning it was assisted by the Ministry of Industry and Trade, other state bodies, organisations established to provide support for export and commerce in the Czech Republic and embassies (particular assistance and co-operation with trade representations) of CIS countries in the Czech Republic, especially by those of the Russian Federation, Ukraine, Belarus and Kazachstan. It has no dealings with the Baltic States as they are not CIS countries.
The purpose of its activities is to assist Czech businessmen and managers when entering promising CIS markets and to support Czech exports to these countries. It provides services and advice and arranges seminars and trade missions (at improved terms for CIS Chamber members), which are requested by chamber members and non-members as services which assist Czech companies when preparing and realising their activities, making contacts and engaging in commercial and investment activities.
Since the chamber was established it has been providing a whole range of Czech exporters with consultation services, practical advice and information necessary for doing business successfully in the CIS. The chamber has organised a permanent legal service for them in the Czech Republic (which is provided by leading lawyers from the Russian Federation, Ukraine and Belarus) and a number of expert seminars. It is also developing activities which lead to the provision of direct aid (finding reliable partners, preliminary discussions for working meetings, accompaniment during business trips to places which are known to chamber employees) to Czech exporters and investors, etc. The chamber assisted with the organisation of the programme when Kazachstan opened a representative office of its chamber of commerce and industry in the Czech Republic.
The chamber is developing direct co-operation with regions in CIS countries subsequent to co-operation contracts with partner chambers of commerce and industry and business organisations in the CIS.