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On supporting the economy

25 April 2020

On 24.04.2020, the President of the Republic of Belarus signed the Decree No. 143 "On supporting the economy"

On April 24, President of the Republic of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko signed the Decree No. 143 "On supporting the economy". The document was adopted as a result of the meeting held on April 23, 2020, on priority measures to ensure the sustainable operation of the country's economy and social sphere in the context of the global epidemiological situation.

The Decree provides for the implementation of measures to support business entities in certain sectors of the economy that are most exposed to the adverse impact of the current epidemiological situation. The list of such sectors is defined in the annex to the Decree.

The document provides for deferred and installment payment of tax credits, and the period for returning the difference between the amount of tax deductions and the total amount of VAT from the budget is reduced. Individual entrepreneurs are given the opportunity to switch to other taxation regimes and recalculate the single tax due to their temporary non-operation.

Rent free period is being introduced, as well as a moratorium on increasing the base rental amount and rent. In addition, local administrative and executive bodies have the right to reduce property taxes. Legal entities and individual entrepreneurs - property owners - are recommended to grant tenants a deferred payment of rent, as well as to reduce its amount taking into account their total revenue.

The procedure of tax accounting for exchange differences chosen by the organization can be changed once during 2020 and will be valid for the entire tax period.

The Minister of Health, Minister of Antimonopoly, Regulation and Trade, and Chairman of the State Committee for standardization were provided with the right to suspend the operation of the commercial facility, catering facility to correct the violations (but no more than for 90 days) in case of detecting during an inspection infringements of the legislation, control over compliance of which relates to the competence of the relevant Ministry. This measure is aimed at improving the discipline in the work of business entities, especially necessary in the current economic and epidemiological situation.

In order to maintain employment and increase labor mobility, the minimum period for notifying employees of changes in essential working conditions by the employer has been reduced (without reducing the amount of remuneration). The period of possible temporary relocation of employees due to industrial necessity, adverse impact of the epidemiological situation, as well as to replace an absent employee, has also been extended to 3 months.

A temporary disability benefit is provided for persons caring for a child under the age of 10 who attend pre-school or general secondary education institution, if the child is a first or second-level contact.

In order to simplify procurement procedures, customers are granted the right to public procurement from a single source (to the extent necessary to meet the requirements for 2 months) if the contract with the previous supplier is terminated.

At the same time, suppliers who have not fulfilled their obligations and are forced to terminate the contract for objective reasons will not be included in the list of mala fide suppliers temporarily.

In order for the Government to respond quickly and flexibly to the deterioration of the epidemiological situation, it has been granted the right to adopt a special temporary procedure for public procurement, if necessary.

It is determined that the repayment of debt for energy resources in foreign currency is made at the exchange rate of the ruble established by the National Bank on December 31, 2019 to foreign currency used for payments for energy resources.

It is planned to extend the rules on the grounds of subsidiary liability established in sub-paragraph 5.6 of paragraph 5 of Decree No. 7 dated November 23, 2017 "On the development of entrepreneurship" to the relations that arose before the Decree was adopted.

The Decree also provides for a number of other rules and regulations that will support the work of business entities and preserve labor collectives in the conditions of economic activity slowdown.