The Russian authorities have abandoned the idea of introducing a “voluntary” business contribution to the Russian budget and are now considering introducing just a new fee for companies whose average profit over the past two years has exceeded 1 billion rubles. It is reported by RBC with reference to sources familiar with the negotiations.
Exceptions are provided only for companies in the oil and gas sector, which this year have their own tax surcharges: for example, Gazprom alone sends 50 billion rubles more to the budget every month due to an increase in the mineral extraction tax. The new fee is likely to be reflected in the Tax Code, sources say.
“We are talking about a fee established in the Tax Code, which is of a universal nature – everyone will have to pay it, except for SMEs [small and medium-sized businesses],” says a source close to the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs (RSPP) and familiar with discussion of the problem in the government.
However, at the moment, the parameters for introducing a new fee are not obvious. The publication notes that there is no consensus in the government regarding the parameters of taxation. We are talking about profit, as well as the period for which this profit is considered. Among the options discussed are estimates for 2021 or 2022, as well as an option with an average profit for two years. The criterion of taxation is also still being discussed: it can be profit over 1 billion rubles before taxes or net profit according to the results of the selected period.
The Ministry of Finance expects to raise up to 300 billion rubles from the new fee in 2023, RBC sources at the RSPP claim that the amount may be lower and amount to 250 billion. The money can be sent to the National Welfare Fund (NWF), and from there go to social and infrastructure spending . According to RBC, at the end of 2021, only 245 Russian companies (including oil and gas companies) received a net profit of over 1 billion rubles. It is not possible to estimate the income of companies in 2022, since many have classified them.
Prior to the tax collection, the authorities proposed introducing a “voluntary” contribution to the Russian budget that Russian companies would pay because of the “super profits” they received in 2021-2022. The idea came from First Deputy Prime Minister Andrey Belousov, who, not for the first time, proposed to increase the tax burden on businesses in order to replenish the budget. However, Belousov did not provide specific parameters for the “voluntary” contribution, and business and the government came to the conclusion that it would be problematic to organize “voluntary” contributions.