Russian governmental loan to refinance VTB-bank loan
Belarus’ Council of Ministers adopted a decree (No 339, April 10th, 2014) which approved the procedures for an intergovernmental loan from Russia amounting to USD 450 million with a ten-year repay period at 4% per annum. This loan implies that Belarus failed to find other funding sources (privatisation, foreign trade) to service its public debt and to replenish its international reserves. This loan would refinance the USD 440 mln VTB bank loan, raised in December 2013 for six months. Belarus also anticipates new loans from Russia’s commercial banks.
The Labour and the Tax Ministries are considering the possibility to include persons engaged in some economic activity without forming a legal entity in the social security system. When the decree No 337 comes into effect, the number of private entrepreneurs is likely to reduce due to the possibility of reducing the tax burden when switching to a tax payment as an individual. 95% of self-employed, including PE, pay insurance premiums on the basis of the minimum wage. The number of self-employed citizens is expected to increase, the number of insurance contributions to the pension system from PE will decrease, the number of citizens who will pay a fee to finance government spending will decrease by several tens. Self-employed citizens have the alternative not to pay social security fees and save resources for future pensions, which, given the gradual restriction by the state of pension requirements could be a more long-sighted option.