Sunday, November 30, 2008

The Flat Tax Spreads to Belarus

November 30, 2008

By Alvin Rabushka

Effective January 1, 2009, Belarus will replace its five-bracket personal income tax (PIT) with a flat-rate tax of 12%. The current PIT imposes a marginal tax rate of 9% on annual aggregate taxable income up to BYR 3,402,000. Thereafter, the rates are 15% between BYR 3,402,001-8,505,000, 20% between BYR 8,505,001-11,907,000, 25% between BYR 11,9077,001-15,309,000, and 30% over BYR 15,309,001. ($1=BYR 2,142 as of November 28, 2008. The Belarus ruble has remained in a narrow trading range of $1=BYR 2,142-2,160 during 2004-8.) Taxpayers are allowed a basic deduction for themselves and their children up to the age of 18. Under existing law, dividends are taxed at 15% and royalties at 40% while interest and capital gains are tax-free. Further details of the new Belarus 12% flat tax will be posted here as they become available.

Belarus selected a flat rate of 12% to be 1% less than Russia’s 13% flat tax.

The corporate profits tax remains at 24% and value added tax at 18%, both harmonized with Russia, with whom Belarus has single-market arrangements.

No comments: