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Belarus introduces export duty on potash fertilizers

MINSK, 26 November (BelTA) - Decree No. 530 as of 22 November has introduced an export duty on potash fertilizers from 1 January to 31 July 2012, BelTA has learnt.

The document sets forth that the export duty will be levied on companies having an exclusive right to export mineral or chemical potash fertilizers outside the Participating states of the Eurasian Economic Community (except for countries with which Belarus signed international free trade agreements).

The duty base is “the amount of mineral or chemical potash fertilizers in physical terms exported from 1 January to 31 July 2012”. The duty rate is Br279,800 per 1 tonne of fertilizers. The amount of the duty to be paid is the duty base multiplied by the duty rate. The duty is paid to the national budget out of own funds of companies after computation of profit taxes, duties (dues) and contribution of the due part of the profit (revenues).

The duty shall be paid every month in equal amounts not later than the last working day starting from the month of the official publication of the decree. It applies to all export transactions that were carried out starting from 1 January 2012.

First Deputy Premier of Belarus Vladimir Semashko said that the government can take out excess profit from state-run companies (the companies where the government owns 100% of shares). “I cannot give you the figures, but our companies, just like many companies in the industry, have a very good profitability. There are some sound economic considerations that imply that only a certain amount of funds is needed for current operations and investment programs, the rest can be taken out by the state (after payment of taxes and profit tax) and used for other important purposes,” the First Vice Premier said.

He emphasized that the move will no way undermine the economic performance of Belaruskali. He explained: “In line with thorough calculations and good judgment of the Economy Ministry, Finance Ministry and the government in general, the company will have as much as it needs for daily operations and investment projects it (Belaruskali – BelTA’s note) is running. There is another way of withdrawing that has been used in the past three years, but it does not impede successful performance of Belaruskali”.

Talking about the talks with Uralkali, Vladimir Semashko said: “Tense and difficult negations are underway within the framework of Belarusian Potash Company. Over the seven years and a half we could see that the decision to work together was right. Together we are doing much better than separately. Everybody understands that we need to work towards the common goal”.