21 Sep 2010 15:38

New alcohol excise tax procedures will allow faster rate hikes in a year - Kudrin

MOSCOW. Sept 21 (Interfax) - Introduction of new procedures for buying excise tax stamps will make it possible to resume a higher pace of rate increases in a year, Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin said.

"We have new procedures for buying the excise stamps: you decide whether to manufacture [product subject to the excise tax], but pay in advance, because we plan to collect more [excise taxes in 2011]. That will allow us to return to a faster pace of increases in the excise tax on alcohol in a year," Kudrin said in the State Duma on Tuesday.

Kudrin had wanted a bigger increase in the excise tax in 2011 but the government decided that introducing new forms of control over the alcohol market would make it possible to wait a year. The current plan is to raise the excise tax by the level of inflation or a little less, Kudrin said.

Commenting on the increase in excises on tobacco, Kudrin recalled that a schedule for doubling the excise tax over three years was approved in 2009. This year plans are to triple the excises over three years. "That is, we are proceeding along the most severe schedule, for the public, which must pay for this, and for producers," he said. "It's a quite reasonable but a severe schedule," he said.