Bloomberg News

Russia to Close Gap in Local, Export Gas Prices to Boost Revenue

February 22, 2012

Feb. 18 (Bloomberg) -- Russia should narrow the gap between domestic and export prices for natural gas as part of a planned tax overhaul to be undertaken by the next government, Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said.

The new government should consider “drawing additional revenue from the gas industry through the increase, and by evening out, domestic prices and foreign prices,” Siluanov told reporters at an economic forum in the Siberian city of Krasnoyarsk today.

Russia shouldn’t raise taxes, including a planned return of the payroll tax to 34 percent, as part of the possible shift in revenue sources, he said. The higher domestic gas prices and other shifts in the tax burden shouldn’t hurt Russian companies, Siluanov said.

Prime Minister Vladimir Putin is seeking to return to the Kremlin in a March 4 vote and has said President Dmitry Medvedev may replace him as premier. A committee of policy analysts are working on a policy program for Putin called Strategy-2020, which includes an overhaul of the tax code.

The new government should also consider taxes on property and an alteration to how revenue is divided between the federal government and the regions, Siluanov said today.

To contact the reporter on this story: Scott Rose in Krasnoyarsk, Russia at rrose10@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Scott Rose at rrose10@bloomberg.net


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