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Crimea may be granted tax preferences if admitted to Russia

March 17, 2014, 19:14 UTC+3 MOSCOW
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MOSCOW, March 17. /ITAR-TASS/. The Republic of Crimea, which voted for its independence from Ukraine in a referendum on March 16, may be granted tax preferences, Deputy Finance Minister Sergei Shatalov said on Monday, March 17.

“Crimea’s probable accession to Russia will require considerable changes in tax legislation to form a customs service and a tax service, register legal entities and individuals, and work out rules of adaptation to the Russian tax system. Transitional periods will be needed. I do not rule out that special tax regimes may be introduced,” Shatalov said.

Minister of Economic Development Alexei Ulyukayev does not rule out that Crimea and the Black Sea region may become an area of priority development. “We are talking about priority development regions for the Far East. We may have to alter this position. Why should we confine this to a certain area? We may as well consider Crimea a part of a priority Black Sea development area that would include Crimea and the Russian Black Sea region,” the minister said, adding that investment clusters might be created in such fields as tourism, ports, etc.

Russia is also considering providing one billion euro a year to Crimea to cover its budget deficit if transfers from Ukraine stop. Russian companies are also discussing investment projects worth five billion U.S. dollars.

“One billion is a sum that is needed to cover the budget deficit in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea, which may occur if transfers from Ukraine stop. I don’t think we should make any decision on the entire billion. We should make a decision on technical measures as to how to fill the budget of the Republic of Crimea in the amount of 80-90 million U.S. dollars every month. Another 5 billion U.S. dollars are investment projects of Russian companies, but they will undertake them only if they find them beneficial. It’s just a normal business practice,” Ulyukayev said.

“At any rate, we will have to make this decision because government bodies of the Republic of Crimea turned to us with this problem, and we will have to discuss [it] and make a decision regardless of the results of the referendum and possible further decisions. This is a humanitarian, technical and financial problem we have to address,” he said.

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