Ministry of Finance of Kazakhstan: Tax Amnesty will affect 90,000 small and medium business entities

October 18 at the press conference in the press center of the Government on the funding for the implementation of the President’s Address “Growing Welfare of Kazakh Citizens: Increase in Income and Quality of Life,” Minister of Finance Alikhan Smailov spoke about conducting a tax amnesty for small and medium businesses.

The Head of State has repeatedly noted that the main reserve for increasing the income of the population is the development of small and medium-sized businesses. In the Address “Growing Welfare of Kazakh Citizens: Increase in Income and Quality of Life,” the President instructed to begin a tax amnesty for SMEs from January 1, 2019, writing off penalties and fines, provided that the principal amount of the tax was paid.

To this end, the Ministry of Finance from the beginning of 2019 will hold a tax amnesty for small and medium businesses.

“This amnesty is carried out, on the one hand, in order to improve the business climate, business atmosphere in our country, on the other hand, to give an opportunity to still pay taxes for small and medium-sized businesses,” Smailov said.

The minister stressed that the tax amnesty will affect only small and medium-sized businesses. Manufacturers of the excisable group, companies operating in the oil sector, and pseudo-enterprises are excluded.

According to the Ministry of Finance, now about 90,000 SMEs have debts amounting to 294 billion tenge, which has not been repaid as of October 1, 2018.

“They are given the opportunity to pay the basic tax liabilities that they have for October 1. If in the course of the next year they pay their arrears to the budget, then the state will undertake the cancellation of penalties and fines, i.e., the amnesty applies only to penalties and fines. Thus, on the one hand, the budget will be replenished, and on the other hand, we reduce the burden of obligations to the budget in the form of fines and penalties so that the business can still pay and continue its activities,” the minister noted.

According to preliminary estimates, about 111 billion tenge of penalties and 5.8 billion tenge of fines will be charged, subject to repayment of the principal debt of 178 billion tenge until December 31, 2019.

Also, the Minister of Finance Smailov said that today, on behalf of the Head of State, issues are being worked out on the humanization of certain economic criminal offenses. This is a consistent measure in the President’s policy on the decriminalization of criminal offenses.

Corresponding legislative norms are being developed to raise the threshold of criminal liability for tax violations for legal entities from 20,000 MCI (48.1 million tenge) to 50,000 MCI (120.2 million tenge).

For rehabilitation and bankruptcy, work will be continued on the return to the economic turnover of assets frozen in rehabilitation and bankruptcy procedures.

“In order to support enterprises experiencing financial difficulties, the possibility of restoring solvency at an early stage is considered, without bringing the situation to bankruptcy,” said Smailov.

To implement these measures, the Ministry of Finance has developed a draft law on the improvement of rehabilitation and bankruptcy procedures, under which the conditions under which the rehabilitation procedure and the procedure for its implementation can be initiated will be revised.

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