Lukashenka prompts Foreign Ministry to boost international economic cooperation
President Lukashenka has requested the Foreign Ministry to focus on foreign trade in some specific areas. Apparently, the Foreign Ministry efforts to boost cooperation with Asian countries have not yet delivered concrete results for the Belarusian economy. In late May – early June, the Belarusian officials significantly increased the level of contacts with China, India and Pakistan in an attempt to balance out possible pressure from the Kremlin and the EU during the presidential campaign in Belarus. Recently, the president has requested the Foreign Ministry and embassies abroad to focus on marketing products of Belarusian state-owned enterprise in the coming months, in order to unload stocks and preserve the employment levels at state enterprises until the presidential campaign.
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.