There is currently a discussion going on about further increasing the tax burden for Russians. The super-rich have already started paying more. This was reported to URA.RU by the first deputy chairman of the State Duma Committee on Budget and Taxes, Mikhail Shchapov.
Tax burden is growing
“There is now a serious discussion about the need to further increase the tax burden. However, there are not many sources: resource exporters, banks, the super-rich or just citizens. We strongly oppose increasing the burden on Russians. It doesn’t matter how: through taxes, tariffs, additional fees, or in some other way,” said Mikhail Shchapov.
According to him, the tax burden in Russia is already growing. “This is being done through additional adjustments to the existing tax system. For example, the 2023 budget included about 1.2 trillion rubles of additional revenue from the oil and gas industry and coal exporters. This year, a law on a one-time excess profits tax was adopted. Formally, rates remain at the same level and new permanent taxes do not appear, but the tax burden is growing,” the deputy noted.
How the introduction of a progressive tax scale will help
To rebalance and stabilize the economic situation, he proposed introducing a steeper progressive tax scale. “Increase the burden on the super-rich through the introduction of additional taxes on luxury and excess consumption. We also propose changing customs policy so as to take more from exporters of resources and low-tech products, and from importers of those products that are already produced in Russia. Our proposals are based on analysis, forecasts and experience of other countries. You can call them populism as much as you like, but economic logic is inexorable, and they will eventually have to be implemented. The main thing is not to cause harm to citizens, small and medium-sized businesses, and to increase their well-being and opportunities,” the agency’s interlocutor emphasized.
Risks of tax increases
You need to be careful with the progressive scale, said Artem Kiryanov, Chairman of the Russian Taxpayers Union, Deputy Chairman of the State Duma Committee on Economic Policy. “Very often there are proposals to change the personal income tax system. The whole palette can be characterized as follows: do not take income tax from those who earn little, and take an increased percentage, up to 35%, from those with high income. I would still treat such proposals with great caution, because, as a rule, they are made without proper financial justification,” the expert said.
In his opinion, such measures could lead to a decrease in regional budget revenues and will not help the poor. “There are serious doubts that the absence of taxes on personal income will help these individuals themselves in a difficult situation. I don’t think that employers will pay them this tax in addition to their wages. That is, we will simply make life easier for a certain number of employers. This is not directly supporting people. There are other targeted, understandable, targeted mechanisms. The second point is that there are not so many people with high incomes, and the vast majority with low and average incomes. If we don’t take taxes from 80 or even 30% of people, then we put regional budgets at risk,” explained Kiryanov.
Conditions for tax reduction
The deputy did not rule out that in the future the tax burden for Russians will decrease. “Taxes are not the goal itself. Our goal is to develop the economy, improve the level and quality of life of people. We had higher taxes that no one paid. That is, the more people honestly pay taxes, regardless of whether they are an individual or an entrepreneur, the lower the tax rate. The main task is business transparency, whitewashing of industries and honest payment of taxes, which does not imply any schemes or evasions. I don’t think that in the coming years we should expect an increase in the tax rate from 13%,” concluded the URA.RU interlocutor.
The deadline for paying taxes in Russia is set for December 1. Debtors will be charged penalties for delays. You can find out how much you will need to pay on the website of the Federal Tax Service.