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  • President Vladimir Putin delivers a televised address to the nation from his residence, Moscow, Russia, March 25, 2020.

    President Vladimir Putin delivers a televised address to the nation from his residence, Moscow, Russia, March 25, 2020. | Photo: EFE

Published 26 March 2020
Opinion

Welfare programs, federal tax payments suspension, and preferential credits are some measures that the Russian government will implement to avoid a recession.

Russia’s President Vladimir Putin Thursday said that his country will halt the Covid-19 pandemic in the next three months at most thanks to the joint work between the state, society, and business.

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"We will deal with the coronavirus in two or three months. This is already a good prognosis because, in some countries, it is said that the war with the virus will be a very long one," Putin said as reported by Sputnik.

On his televised address to the nation, Putin also announced new measures to protect the Russian people and their economy.

First, to encourage the population to stay home from March 28 to April 5, all workers will receive paid leave, although all non-essential economic activities will be suspended.

Among the social protection measures to be implemented immediately, the Russian president indicated that welfare benefits will be automatically extended for six months.

“All families eligible for parental benefits will receive US63 per month, multiplied by the number of children under four years old, in the course of the next three months. Payments for families with children between the ages of three and seven will begin a month early, in June instead of July,” local outlet Medusa reported.

Regarding business support, Putin announced an extension of preferential credits for companies whose business line has been directly affected by the pandemic. In these cases, federal tax payments are suspended.

The Russian government will also grant small and mid-sized businesses six months to pay federal taxes, except for value-added taxes. These types of companies will also have their credit payments delayed for a similar time.

On Thursday morning, Russia had 840 Covid-19 cases, 182 of which were confirmed in the last 24 hours. The health authorities also reported 38 recovered cases so far.

Putin also established some measures focused on entrepreneurs who often take capital out of Russia into tax havens.​​​​​​

"Dividends that are transferred from Russia into offshore accounts will face a 15 percent income tax. A 13 percent tax will be applied to individual income earned from bank deposits and long-term bonds if those investments exceed US$12,670," the outlet Meduza mentioned.

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