A To­ken of Con­sen­sus

Economy of Belarus - - IN THE SPOTLIGHT -

Sergei Kis­lukhin, Di­rec­tor of the State Stamps De­part­ment of the Finance Min­istry, noted that con­trol stamps are de­signed to con­firm that the prod­uct is sold legally with all the taxes and du­ties paid. The sys­tem was in­tro­duced in 2005 to ac­com­plish a very im­por­tant goal, namely to pre­vent the sales of il­le­gal prod­ucts. Head of the Of­fice for Dig­i­tal Con­trol over Mer­chan­dise Sales of the Tax and Du­ties Min­istry Olga Tarakanova noted that the idea to use con­trol and iden­ti­fi­ca­tion stamps emerged in the early 2000s when large amounts of un­reg­is­tered mer­chan­dise were im­ported into Be­larus. The mer­chan­dise was sold, in­clud­ing via of­fi­cial re­tail out­lets, with­out any taxes paid. Both the state bud­get and legally op­er­at­ing man­u­fac­tur­ers were un­happy since the lat­ter were un­able to beat grey mar­ket prices.

Olga Tarakanova ex­plained: “Our ex­pe­ri­ence of us­ing con­trol and iden­ti­fi­ca­tion stamps sug­gests that pos­i­tive ef­fect can be ex­pected within a year or two. For in­stance, when beer stamps were in­tro­duced in 2005, beer im­port tripled right away. When juice

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