Updated at 19:23,23-11-2017

Tobacco and fuel excise duties to rise sharply

Usevalad Shlykau, Belsat

Excise duty rates for motor fuel and for cigarettes will rise 50% — from 13% to 37%. When the head of Belarus this year warned of the imminent increase in excise duties, he promised that the money that the government will get from the tobacco price increase will be spent to the development of sports and health. He forbade to touch the remaining goods.

Representative of the Belneftekhim concern said that the new excise duties on fuel will not affect motorists, because fuel prices will not be raised. How will they remain unchanged?

“Most likely, the upgrading program that now exist at both refineries will not be fully implemented, and the funds will be allocated as the excise tax to the budget of the country,” said Alyaksandr Yarashuk, chairman of the Congress of Democratic Trade Unions.

Despite the words of the highest official, we should prepare for a more tangible price growth, says the expert, because where else will the money to fill the budget come from?

“These are the traditional sources. Most likely, we will be faced with the fact that the prices of all products that exist will continue to grow. Most likely, the Belarusians should be prepared for the fact that it is necessary to increasingly tighten their belts,” added Yarashuk.

This year has been introduced a tax on long-term bank deposits, there was an increase in utility tariffs, first parasites will pay taxes, and other smaller-scale measures will be in place.

Perhaps extreme measures, at least for now, will not have to be introduced – Belarus has been promised a loan from the Eurasian Fund of stabilization and development. Besides, already in October, the Belarusian authorities said there was a breakthrough in the negotiations about the loan from the International Monetary Fund. But so far the promises have been only promises.