Banks don't want to be equal with international ratings

Association of the North-West Banks asks the Ministry of Finance to change the requirements for banks, which participate in auction on placement of free budget funds on deposits, in part of international ratings for long-term solvency. Now banks with rating not lower than ВВ- by Fitch or S&P classification and not lower than Ва3 (Moody’s) are admitted to trading. Implementation of this requirement is rather problematic for most of Russian banks in view of agencies’ systematic decrease in ratings and forecasts both for Russia and banks - in most cases with solvency preservation.

At the same time, according to Association of the North-West Banks, the city budget funds can be placed almost only in banks with state participation. The Association suggests considering the ratings of national agencies, which are accredited by the Ministry of Finance («Expert RA», «National Rating Agency», «AK&M», «RusRating»), or using the method of the Central Bank by abandoning the absolute values of individual international ratings of a particular bank.

In most cases the rates are politically committed and caused by Russia's position in the Ukraine. American mortgage market situation in 2008 showed that the calculations of leading rating agencies are far from a real assessment of company’s financial condition, country's economic situation. In this regard, the position of Russian banks not to be equal with ratings of American agencies looks quite reasonably.

The government presented the capital amnesty bill

The Russian government submitted to the State Duma the capital amnesty bill. According to the bill, it will be possible to declare any property in tax bodies, including property rights, monetary assets and securities.

The business community is proposed to legalize all the assets and to disclose the holding structure through the controlled foreign company (CFC) law. The force of the law will guide to the entrepreneurs, having more than a 10% stake in the controlled foreign company, not being a tax resident of RF. At the same time, if the businessman is a major shareholder and the profit of the company exceeds RUB 50 million, he is bound to pay the profit tax.

The President has already signed the CFC law in November 2014; still it would be possible to amnesty the released from the offshore capitals only after the adoption of the amnesty law. Initially, it was proposed to apply the notice concerning the withdrawal from the offshore till April 1st. However the term was extended till June 15th at the request of the Ministry of Finance. It is suggested to file the declaration till December 31st.

At first the business community hoped for the longer terms of going through the procedure. Thus in the beginning the issue was about a period no longer than 2 years.

It is important that the capital amnesty bill make provisions for strict norms of the provided data privacy. The authorities not once underlined that one of the amnesty’s goals is to make the legalization procedure transparent and safe. It is said that those citizens who decided to choose this procedure should be guaranteed against criminal and tax prosecution. For this purpose all the given information will be under the tax secrecy regime.

For the first time the President announced about the capital amnesty during the annual address to the Federal Assembly in the end of 2014. The authorities expect that the corresponding measure will not only help to improve the investment climate, but also to replenish the budget.