In the end of September 2014 the Ministry of Economic Development of RF published the stressful script of economic development for 2015. According to the script in 2015 economy awaits the decline on 0.6%, followed by an increase in prices on 7,6%. The ministry assumes that such script could be real if the oil price will set on a mark at 91 dollars per barrel. It is to be recalled that, in May version of stressful script the GDP growth on 0,6% was predicted following the 2015 results.
Stressful script became the last version of forecast of Russian economy development from the Ministry of Economic Development. In the document it is called «A script» and it tests the national economy for deterioration of the external economic situation, leading to a stronger reduction of oil prices.
According to the presented script, the average annual oil price of Urals brand in 2015 will decrease to 91 dollars per barrel. During the next 2 years its stabilization at the level of 90 dollars per barrel is predicted. It is supposed that the prices will reduce on the other raw markets too, which will lead to a reduction of the export income in 2015–2017 on 36–45 bln. dollars a year in comparison with basic forecast, on the basis of which the budget is make up.
The reduction of exporters profit and the rise in price of the imported goods could lead to reduction of investments on 3,5% in 2015. The depreciation of the ruble will influence on consumer prices, the inflation will grow to 7,6% in 2015. The decrease of consumer confidence, in turn, will reduce the retail sales volume on 2,3%. Thus in such a contingency the GDP will decrease on 0,6% in 2015, but won't grow by 1,2% as it is supposed in the basic forecast. However the growth restoration at the level of 1,7–2,8% GDP is expected in 2016–2017.
It should be noted that stressful script is supposed the weakening of national currency rate to 40 rubles per dollar in 2015. However in the current year ruble beats all possible anti-records. Thus since October 29, 2014 the dollar rate is set at the level of 42,39 rubles per dollar by the Central Bank of Russia. Herewith the official rate of dollar has crossed the mark of 41 rubles for the first time on October 17, 2014.
The Central Bank of Russia is preparing its own stressful script. Its details haven’t announced yet, but at a government meeting the chairman of The Central Bank Elvira Nabiullina gave special attention to a negative script of the development. It assumes the reduction of oil prices to 87 dollars per barrel in 2017. According to the script, the economy will grow not higher than 0,5% within three years (2015-2017).
However the basic version of monetary policy of The Central Bank of Russia is close to the basic script of the Ministry of Economic Development by key points. The basic version of monetary policy of The Central Bank suggests the oil price at the level of 104,8 dollars per barrel and the following points: gradual recovery of the world economy, moderate downward trend of oil prices, decrease of geopolitical risks and gradual cancellation of sanctions and foreign trade restrictions. The Central Bank of Russia isn't going to change the target indicators on inflation. However it assumes the increase of prices growth in 2014 on 7,5% and higher, though the target indicator is 5%.
The regulator doesn’t deny the idea of completing the transition to the mode of inflation targeting. According to Elvira Nabiullina, targeting is extremely timely in the current situation, as it creates the conditions for long-term interest rates and predictable financial conditions.
It is to be recalled that earlier The World Bank lowered the basic forecast of the Russian economy growth in 2014 to a level of stagnation: from projected earlier 1.1 to 0.5%. Herewith the basic script takes into account the influence of the following factors: preservation of the international tension due to Ukrainian crisis, sanctions, lack of structural reforms and at the same time preservation of rather high stability level of Russian economy. Thus according to forecast of The World Bank, growth rates of the economy in 2015 will decrease to 0,3%, and in 2016 will amount to 0,4%.
A bill is passing the reading in the State Duma, which vests the Investigative Committee of Russia (ICR) a right to open by itself a criminal case for violation of the tax legislation.
The mechanism of action of amendments will be as follows: by receipt of materials of pre-investigation check an investigator directs to the tax authority during three days a copy of materials with preliminary calculation of the number of arrears in respect of taxes and levies. The tax administration submits its conclusion by not later than 15 days. If it doesn’t happen, the investigative bodies make decision on the institution of proceeding or refusal to initiate it at their discretion.
According to the opinion of the Head of ICR – Aleksandr Bastrykin, the suggested scheme will allow to use operational-investigative means by breaking of complicated schemes of tax fraud, and the Federal Tax Service has no such opportunities.
The initiative has been met in the business environment with a mixed reception. So that, the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs is worried about that the threat of institution of criminal proceedings will be a form of pressure against entrepreneurs. The operative rule assumes that business will be able to challenge at arbitration courts the actions of taxmen already after payment of tax arrears and refund of a part of paid money in case the suit will be won. And in the suggested scheme an active repentance means that a person has admitted his/her guilt without a right to continue proceedings in arbitration court.