Information Ministry starts blocking websites for criticism of authorities
The Information Ministry has restricted access to a popular youth Internet website www.kyky.org, saying that the publications on this website could harm Belarus’ national interests. Recently, the Information Ministry has blocked access to 18 websites for information about where to buy and how to use narcotics and for promotion of child pornography and tabooed vocabulary. In addition, four web-sites had been officially warned by the Ministry, including radio "Racyja”, public association "Svobodny Region», Tuzin.fm and the site of the United Civil Party. So far, the authorities have not yet blocked access to the leading opposition websites, however unofficially restricted access to them during the most critical times thus boosting self-censorship at independent online media.
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.