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Crackdown on shadow economy in Belarus

MINSK (BelTA) – It is necessary to put a stop to shadow economy operations in Belarus. Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko gave the instruction as he heard out a report from Chairman of the State Security Committee of Belarus Valery Vakulchik on 20 October, the press service of the Belarusian leader told BelTA.

The head of state gave instructions to organize no-nonsense work aimed at detecting and suppressing operations in the sphere of shadow economy, including civil servants involved in such schemes. It was stated that parties involved in grey schemes draw money out of the legal circulation, evade taxes and reap huge profits.

Alexander Lukashenko was informed the relevant work had already started. In particular, 13 people, who are founders and executives of the Belarusian company ZAO Konsul, were arrested in Brest on 19 October. The company is a major supplier of merchandise for the Belarusian agribusiness industry. The product choice includes imported food additives, extraction cakes, disinfectants, pedigree animals, equipment and so on. Through over 40 subordinated enterprises the organizers moved foreign currency abroad, evaded taxes, and sold merchandise to end consumers at prices up to three times above the initial ones.

Apart from that, 36 seals of foreign companies, which accounts were used to manage shadow economy flows, have been detected and seized in Belarus. As many as 48 premises have been searched, with over $2 million worth of assets seized and arrested. Apart from that, 106 real estate assets and over 100 cars and trucks have been arrested.