World Economy

Russia to Lift Restrictions on Business, Ease Controls

Russia to Lift Restrictions on Business, Ease ControlsRussia to Lift Restrictions on Business, Ease Controls

Russian President Vladimir Putin has urged to maximally lift restrictions on business and make all the checks public.

In a state of the-nation address, Putin mentioned “new approaches in the work of controlling and supervisory authorities.” The changes are slow and the work of these bodies closes the road to law-abiding businessmen, Itar Tass quoted him as saying.

The president stressed that business should be “freed from obsessive control.” “Each check should become public,” he stressed.

He called for “abandoning the principle of total control” and follow only where there are “signs of violations.”

  Money Amnesty

He proposed an all-out amnesty for offshore capital, if money is returned to the country.

“I propose carrying out full amnesty of capital returning to Russia, precisely an all-out amnesty,” Putin said.

“And, of course, we need to explain to people taking corresponding decisions what full amnesty means,” Putin said.

Putin said he will follow closely the implementation of the “offshore amnesty” law.

 “And, of course, we need to explain to people who should take corresponding decisions what full amnesty means,” Putin said.

“This means that if an individual legalizes his funds and property in Russia, he will receive firm and legal guarantees that he will not be summoned to various bodies, including law-enforcement agencies, will not be ‘questioned’ there and will not be asked about the sources and the methods of gaining capital and he will not face criminal or administrative prosecution while tax and law-enforcement agencies will not have questions about him,” Putin said.

  Tax System

Putin also proposed that no changes be made to the existing tax system over the next four years.

“I suggest that the existing tax conditions should remain unchanged for the next four years, and we should not turn back to this issue again,” Putin said.

The Russian leader stressed that businessmen “are right to say about the need for a stable legislation and predictable rules, including taxes. “I totally agree with it,” Putin added.

According to export of value-added products should increase by 1.5 times over three years, Putin said.

“Over three years export of value-added products should increase by 1.5 times,” Putin said.

  Adjusting Economy

The Russian economy is hurting from sanctions, low oil prices, and geopolitical tension, but predicting its imminent collapse is a fear-mongering tactic, and not entirely true, Russia’s Deputy Finance Minister told RT.

“I don’t think the economy is really faltering it’s just adjusting to the new realities of international trade,” Aleksey Moiseev, Deputy Finance Minister of the Russian Federation, said.

Moiseev’s comments were in response to President Vladimir’s State of the Nation address on Thursday, which largely addressed the economic difficulties the country faces.

One of the thorns in the side of the Russian economy is the slipping oil price, which has fallen about 40 percent since its peak in June. “It is important for an economy to adjust to the changing terms of trade. It has happened to Russia before and it is happening to us now,” he said.

“I think that compared to other instances of falling oil prices, the Russian economy is adjusting much better than before,” Moiseev explained. Russia is better equipped to weather the shock this time. Thanks to several years of high oil prices it has been able to bolster its foreign currency reserves to about $428 billion, making a default unlikely.

“Russia has a strong balance sheet – at least enough to cover the expected budget deficit and all foreign debt obligations until end-2015 without accessing new external capital or debt – and the weakening ruble provides a lot of protection to the budget,” Chris Weafer, partner at Macro Advisory, wrote in an emailed note Thursday. “We have to be more efficient, and more investment friendly, and that’s exactly the message the president has sent,” Moiseev concluded.