Putin Delivers Annual Address, Vows to Keep Tax Regime for Business

Russian President Vladimir Putin said in his annual state of the nation address on Wednesday that Russia’s government should keep the tax regime for business unchanged for the next six years, RBC reported.

In the message to the Federal Assembly, the Russian President also said he introduced amendments to the State Duma that remove controversial “vague norms regarding criminal law regarding so-called economic structures”. 

“So entrepreneurs, have repeatedly paid attention to article 210 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation, according to which any company whose leaders violated the law could qualify as an organized criminal community,” Putin said. This meant that almost all employees fell under the article.

Now, according to the president, law enforcement agencies will have to prove that the organization was deliberately created for illegal purposes.

Among the biggest changes proposed by Putin in this year’s address is a change in the state structure of Russia: the president said he would endorse constitutional amendments proposing a radical expansion of the powers of the State Duma (lower house of parliament), the state council and municipalities. All proposals to amend the Constitution will be put to a universal vote, Putin said.

“We need to entrust the State Duma with not just approving but [choosing] the prime minister’s candidacy,” he said while noting that “Russia should remain a strong presidential republic.”

In other business-related news from the Russian president’s address, he followed up on an earlier proposal for manufacturers of packaged products to bear the costs of disposing of the packaging.

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