It is worth recalling that the two previous packages included 95 measures of state support in total, which made it possible to provide assistance to 59 thousand entrepreneurs. These actions helped to contain the decline in small businesses, which amounted to 3.4 percent, while in the Volga Federal District it is 4.4 percent. That is, despite the pandemic, the number of small businesses in Belarus even increased by 0.3 percent.
– Since small business suffered more than other sectors of the economy from the restrictive measures associated with the coronavirus pandemic, many actions were aimed specifically at supporting it, – emphasized the Prime Minister of the Republic of Belarus Andrei Nazarov. – In particular, two thousand business entities took advantage of the exemption from paying rent payments for state and municipal property.
Mr. Nazarov noted that more than 1,300 organizations and individual entrepreneurs received direct state support, and the volume of these preferences amounted to 4.5 billion rubles.
“When developing a new package of measures, we focused on the need for accelerated economic development,” said Andrei Nazarov. – In total, the third package included 66 support measures totaling 9.7 billion rubles. In fact, it will not only support, but develop the economy.
What is this new rescue package? First, stimulation of investment activity will continue this year. Here we are talking about compensation for exchange rate differences and reimbursement of part of the cost of paying interest on loans in the framework of priority investment projects. For these purposes, it is planned to allocate at least 100 million rubles, and compensation for expenses and the creation of engineering infrastructure will require more than 1.2 billion.
The republican business will not stand aside either. Tax holidays will be extended for new small businesses, and one of the main innovations will be the complete zeroing of the rate on the unified agricultural tax. In general, about 100 million will be allocated to increase the number of agricultural cooperatives and increase the depth of processing of farmers’ products. In addition, a new program will be launched for producers of soft drinks and juices in Bashkiria, according to which projects up to five million rubles will be able to receive state co-financing.
As for the tourism sector, about 200 million rubles will be allocated to support project initiatives, including the development of geoparks, the creation of campgrounds, ethnic villages and the development of new routes.
The head of the republic, Radiy Khabirov, instructed to inform the population of the region in more detail about the upcoming economic changes.
“Residents should understand why we took these measures in the current difficult budgetary conditions,” summed up Radiy Khabirov. – I am sure that this whole complex of solutions will significantly help the economy of the region.
The largest support – 3.6 billion rubles – will be provided through the Ministry of Housing and Utilities to contractors involved in the repair and improvement of public areas, apartment buildings and courtyards. A significant amount of funds was allocated to the agrarians of the republic – 1.85 billion rubles, industrialists – 700 million rubles, the tourism sector – 194 million rubles. The government has reserved more than 2.17 billion rubles for investment projects. Entrepreneurs will receive tax breaks for 360 million rubles, lost income, 127 million rubles will be written off due to the zeroing of the agricultural tax rate, 90 million rubles – due to the extension of tax holidays for individual entrepreneurs who have switched to a “simplified” or “patent”.
“The package of measures to support business, adopted by the government of the republic, is a marker by which we can judge the priorities of regional economic policy,” says political scientist Nikolai Evdokimov.
The scientist identifies three key areas.
“First, it’s support for investments,” he calculates. – In the past few years, the republic has been looking good in this indicator, and yet attracting investments is an important KPI of governors. Secondly, stimulating the development of small and medium-sized businesses – tax holidays are extended for them. Not everything is so good with this, the number of small businesses is decreasing. Of course, support measures are needed, especially during a pandemic, when many have lost their jobs and sources of constant income. Third, support for agriculture. The republic has always been an agrarian region.
Mr. Evdokimov notes the role of the state in the success of agriculture in the past year.
– In 2020, we managed to harvest a good harvest, and in general, indicators in agriculture increased, but this is an area that cannot survive without state support, therefore investment in agricultural production will always be relevant, – explains Nikolai Anatolyevich.
In addition to the recently adopted measures, programs to support investment activities are also constantly operating in the republic. Among the main ones are corporate income tax benefits – lowering the regional part of corporate income tax to 13.5 percent, corporate property tax incentives – exemption from property tax payments, investment tax deduction for corporate income tax – reducing the amount of tax to 50 percent of the amount of expenses of the current tax period and a number of others.
These measures allow Bashkiria to show investment growth even against the background of the coronavirus crisis, despite the general decline in investment activity.