Belarus’ government withdraws anti-corruption campaign from limelight
While visiting a flax plant in the Orsha district, President Lukashenko talked about the failure to meet the modernisation deadlines in the industry and demanded a revival of the Belarusian flax industry.
In mid-August, the new anti-corruption draft law was brought up for public discussion. Since then, the authorities have reduced the anti-corruption rhetoric and public coverage of the issue in the state media. In addition, there was less criticism of state managers for failures to implement state programmes. The authorities are not interested in society participating actively in the anti-corruption campaign, as its main aim is to boost President Lukashenko’s support ratings ahead of elections in 2015.
The Labour and the Tax Ministries are considering the possibility to include persons engaged in some economic activity without forming a legal entity in the social security system. When the decree No 337 comes into effect, the number of private entrepreneurs is likely to reduce due to the possibility of reducing the tax burden when switching to a tax payment as an individual. 95% of self-employed, including PE, pay insurance premiums on the basis of the minimum wage. The number of self-employed citizens is expected to increase, the number of insurance contributions to the pension system from PE will decrease, the number of citizens who will pay a fee to finance government spending will decrease by several tens. Self-employed citizens have the alternative not to pay social security fees and save resources for future pensions, which, given the gradual restriction by the state of pension requirements could be a more long-sighted option.