An amendment to the Law on Excise Duties has been published, effective as of 1 February 1996. New rules include:
- excise duties on mineral resources are payable at the moment goods are produced (not sold, as before);
- exported goods are exempt from excise duties, with the exception of mineral resources, export to CIS countries, or export under barter agreements;
- on invoices, excise duties must be mentioned in a separate line;
- if excise duties have been paid on raw materials, this "input excise" can be credited against "output excise" on the production. If the production is not excisable under a special provision, the "input excise" can be credited against future excise payments or be refunded;
- a credit can be received for excise duties paid in another CIS country on goods, originating from that country, if those goods are subsequently imported into the Russian Federation and are also subject to excise duties.
(Federal Law of the Russian Federation No. 23-FZ of 7 March 1996)
FINANCIAL LEASING / LICENSING
It is now obligatory for companies which are lessors under financial lease agreements to obtain a license. The licenses are issued by the Ministry of Economic Affairs. One of the requirements for the license to remain valid once granted is that income of the lessor from financial leasing activities constitutes at least 40% of the total annual income.
(Government Regulation No. 167 of 26 February 1996)
CURRENCY CONTROL / IMPORT PASSPORTS
Instruction No. 30 of the Central Bank introduced a system of import passports to control whether payments in foreign currency for imports actually result in an import. Not all provisions of the regulation have entered into force, however. According to an unpublished letter of the Central Bank, no penalties can be levied as a result of violation of these provisions. A Government Regulation gives the Federal Service for Currency and Export Control the right to grant a six month deferment for penalties as a result of violation of currency laws.
(Letter of the Central Bank of Russia of 16 January 1996 , No. 229, Government Regulation of 28 February 1996 No. 206)
Legal developments are reported in Tax News Reporter on official publication. This may be long after the law is issued.
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