Project of Tariffs and Customs Policy Main Directions for 2011 and for Planning Period of 2012 and 2013

On March 24, 2010 the RF Government Presidium considered the project for the main directions of customs and tariff policy for 2011 and for the planning period of 2012 and 2013. The report concerning the matter was held by the RF Minister for Economic Development E. Nabiullina. The main part of the report was devoted to the forthcoming work within Customs Union with Belorussia and Kazakhstan and gradual transfer fr om crisis protectionist regulation to post-crisis.

On the whole the priorities of customs and tariffs policy for middle-term were defined by the Main directions for customs and tariffs policy for 2010 and for the planning period of 2011 and 2012. At the same time the global financial and economic crisis, considerable contraction of the world and internal demand, fulfillment of the anti-crisis measures as well as foundation of the Customs Union of Russia, Belorussia and Kazakhstan account for the correction in the customs and tariffs policy priorities. The following is included in the key tasks: implementation of the single customs tariff and coordination of the level of industry development with the duty rates, consolidation of the Customs union institutions, simplification of procedures, green corridor for export of innovative products and import of products for modernization, as well as expansion of the country to the markets wh ere it is competitive.

Last year a number of documents concerning Customs Union was adopted. Specific authority important for the stated was transferred to super national level. There are too many innovations and that is why risks for the decrease in earnings from import duties are inevitable. It is necessary to introduce corresponding regulations, procedures and rules to allow effective coordination of parties’ positions and their consideration when decisions of supranational institution are adopted. It is necessary to develop and implement effective mechanism for promotion of Russia’s position in the Customs Union, reinforcement of soundness of solutions suggested by the Russian party and forecast of their socio-economic and trade and political consequences.

In 2009 the Government considered the increase of import duties (for cars, pipes, rolled metal) as an anti-crisis measure: 10.2% of import from non-CIS countries is levied with higher rates and 2.5% - at lower. On the whole import from non-CIS countries dropped by 36.8%, import of goods duties for which have increased – by 66.9%, those, for which the rates were decreased – by 41.4%. According to the WTO monitoring Russia is heading the list of the countries that have introduced the measures that are the most harmful for the world trade. Now the suggestion of the Ministry for Economic Development is to soften the policy.

It is the promotion of the innovation breakthrough and modernization that is the document’s priority. In the process of transition to the innovative economy the role of customs and tariffs measures should increase: it is necessary to strengthen the tariff protection of certain markets at the initial stages of production of innovative goods, secure their gradual opening coordinated with their establishment, segmentation, growth of competitiveness of the domestic goods. Simultaneous adjustment of customs and tariffs and non-tariff regulation for further stimulation of the production and export of innovative, high-tech goods will require the development of institutes for export promotion, improvement of normative and legislative regulations in the customs, simplification and reduction of the number of administrative procedures, the use of all the instrumentation measures to protect the market that are allowed by the regulations and norms of the WTO.

Volovik N.P. - Head of the Department of Foreign Trade