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Putin offers to extend foreign asset amnesty for Russian entrepreneurs

Putin offers to extend foreign asset amnesty for Russian entrepreneurs
Russia may extend the existing capital amnesty for its citizens for one more year, President Vladimir Putin has announced. The current law, allowing declaration of foreign assets without facing penalties, expires in March.

“It is possible to prolong the capital amnesty for at least one more year for those citizens who transfer their money to Russia, and also register their businesses in special administrative areas,” Putin told the Delovaya Rossiya business forum in Moscow on Wednesday.

Russian entrepreneurs would be able to re-register their businesses under special legal conditions in Kaliningrad, the most western part of the country, and the eastern city of Vladivostok.

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The Russian leader said that flaws of national jurisdiction and lack of security guarantees for private property made Russian people to move their assets abroad.

The existing terms of capital amnesty, designed to encourage the return of capital to Russia, are in force until March 1, 2019. The law allows individuals to inform the tax authorities about the property, controlled foreign companies, accounts in banks located outside Russia in exchange for exemption from tax, administrative and criminal liability. The amnesty covers all revenues, operations and transactions related to overseas assets and accounts.

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Putin also offered a personal income tax remission for one year if a person controlling a foreign company chooses to become Russia’s tax resident this year.

Voluntary declaration of assets and accounts in banks started in Russia in 2015. More than 7,000 declarations were submitted when the measure was in force until the end of June 2016.

The second capital amnesty commenced in 2017 and was extended for one year in 2018. Last year's extension paid off for the government with businessmen declaring some 10 billion euros ($11.4 billion) in foreign assets, according to Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov.

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