Lay everything up – Newspaper Kommersant No. 35 (7236) dated 03/01/2022

Kommersant continues to monitor the government’s reaction to the sanctions. Yesterday, the White House’s arsenal was enriched by the Finance Ministry’s idea of ​​a new capital amnesty for their safe repatriation to Russia. Also among the ideas are the return of IT specialists to the Russian Federation and benefits for this industry. Proposals to support the employment of citizens are being prepared by the Ministry of Labor. All these, as well as the ideas described earlier, will be discussed today at a large meeting with Mikhail Mishustin – following its results, the government should present a unified plan for adapting the Russian Federation to sanctions. To speed up the process, the deadlines for preparing anti-sanction documents were sharply tightened yesterday.

Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin is due to hold a meeting today to prepare a consolidated White House response to the new sanctions. The White House has been busy preparing and coordinating the proposals of the departments since the end of last week (see Kommersant of February 28), yesterday a number of them were probably approved at an operational meeting between the head of government and his deputies. Finance Minister Anton Siluanov reported on ways to support shattered finances: for the stability of the ruble and prices, exporters are required to sell 80% of foreign exchange earnings, the Central Bank’s key rate is raised to 20%, and banks are promised regulatory easing. In addition, due to the rise in the cost of borrowing, the issuance of government securities has been temporarily frozen.

Let us recall that the last measure has already been announced by the authorities, which cannot be said about the topic of a new capital amnesty that suddenly arose yesterday. The minister promised that it would be “larger than it was undertaken in 2015, 2018 and 2019 … in order to guarantee Russian capital, which is currently located abroad.” The Ministry of Finance was not ready to disclose the details to Kommersant yesterday – it probably needs time to work out the technical and legal details and assess the impact on the business; in the usual mode, the preparation of such projects requires two to three weeks.

During the first wave of capital amnesty (from July 1, 2015 to June 30, 2016), the authorities reported 7.2 thousand declarations filed (without disclosing the amount of declared assets). According to the results of the second (from March 1, 2018 to February 28, 2019) – about 11.7 thousand and about declaring “only account balances of more than €10 billion.” During the first two stages, it was not required to transfer assets to Russia. The third stage (from June 1, 2019 to March 1, 2020) set more stringent conditions: only those who returned the money to Russia and re-register controlled foreign companies in special administrative regions in Kaliningrad and Vladivostok received “forgiveness”.

KPMG partner Donat Podniek believes that a new capital amnesty may be required – since Russian individuals and legal entities in foreign jurisdictions may still have undeclared accounts, controlled foreign companies, trusts, etc. “In order to promptly return capital to Russia, they guarantees will be needed that here they will not face inspections, fines and additional charges, ”the Kommersant expert said.

Among other measures that are likely to be included in the government’s final plan are the development of proposals by the Ministry of Digital Development on behalf of Dmitry Chernyshenko to support IT specialists, including those planning to return to the Russian Federation, and the third support package for the IT industry. As Kommersant was told in the department, the proposals were prepared taking into account the opinion of the industry. Among the initiatives is the exemption of employees of IT companies from paying personal income tax for three years, and organizations from paying income tax and from inspections. Also among the measures are the acceleration of software import substitution at critical information infrastructure facilities; allocation of targeted funding for the creation in the Russian Federation of a “mirror” of the GitHub open source software repository – a service for collective development and code storage. The issue of retaining IT specialists is especially relevant due to the fact that employees of Russian IT companies, against the background of the military operation in Ukraine and Western sanctions, are now coordinating efforts to leave the country (see Kommersant on February 28). The Ministry of Labor also received an instruction from the Prime Minister to work out various options for supporting citizens and employment.

Yesterday, on the instructions of the head of the government apparatus and Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Grigorenko, the deadlines for preparing anti-sanction documents were sharply tightened: ministries must prepare them within a period of no more than a day “from the moment they receive the relevant instructions,” and no more than “four hours from the moment the drafts are received.” “. The heads of departments of the apparatus, in turn, were instructed to carry out the entire cycle of work with such proposals “up to submission for signature within no more than 24 hours.”

Oleg Sapozhkov, Vadim Visloguzov, Venera Petrova, Evgenia Kryuchkova, Anastasia Manuylova


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