Business news from Ukraine

JTI UKRAINE WANTS TO WITHDRAW UAH 350 MLN OF PAID EXCISE DUTY

JTI Ukraine, one of the largest tobacco companies in Ukraine, has submitted an application to the State Fiscal Service of Ukraine (SFS) seeking to withdraw 16 million excise labels for which the company paid UAH 350 million in connection with the adoption of bill No. 1049 containing a requirement of regulating the cigarette markup, the company told Interfax-Ukraine on Tuesday.
“We are withdrawing UAH 350 million of excise tax paid due to the adoption of a bill establishing a fixed markup for cigarettes by the Verkhovna Rada,” the press service of the tobacco company said.
According to JTI Ukraine, the company reduced production by 73% in the second half of October compared to its plans.
As reported, British American Tobacco (BAT), a large global tobacco manufacturer, halted production at the B.A.T.-Pryluky factory in Chernihiv region on October 11, 2019. The company said that the reason was bill No. 1049 adopted by the Verkhovna Rada with the requirement on the government regulation of the markup on their goods. Then the company applied to the SFS with the purpose of withdrawing 25 million excise labels and returning UAH 505 million paid for them.
Earlier Philip Morris Ukraine, British American Tobacco, JTI and Imperial Tobacco in Ukraine are mulling the possibility of decreasing production and later closing the tobacco factories on the territory of Ukraine over the adoption of the legislative requirement on the government regulation of markup on their goods by the Verkhovna Rada.
Bill No. 1049, passed at second reading, introducing a single account for paying taxes and duties, the single social security contribution, sets a fixed markup for wholesale and retail traders of tobacco products at 7% and 13% of the maximum retail price per package.
Later, the Council of Entrepreneurs under the Cabinet of Ministers has asked Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to veto bill No. 1049 introducing a single account for paying taxes and duties, and the single social security contribution, as it deprives enterprises of the right to set prices for tobacco goods.

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EUROPEAN BUSINESS ASSOCIATION IN UKRAINE CALLS TO ANNUL EXCISE LABEL FOR WINE

The European Business Association (EBA) has called to annul the excise label for wine, as it does not help to fight counterfeit products, while creates additional expenses for manufacturers, the press service of the association has reported.
According to the EBA, Ukrainian legislation requires the application of an excise label on all beverages with an ethyl alcohol content of more than 8.5% ABV. At the same time, wines with 1.2-15% ABV are subject to excise tax at a rate of UAH 0.01 per liter, while the value of the label is UAH 0.19 per piece. Alcohol importers also bear the cost of sending labels abroad.
“According to the calculations of the member companies of the association, there are UAH 278.6 of additional expenses per UAH 1 of the paid excise tax. Moreover, the major part of the sum does not go to the budget of Ukraine, but remains abroad,” the EBA said.
According to the EU regulations on labeling and protection of names of origin of alcoholic beverages, which Ukraine will have to adapt, beer from malt, grape wines, vermouth, cider and ethyl alcohol are not considered to be alcoholic beverages. Consequently, their quality control in Ukraine should not take place with the help of excise labels, but according to the general legislation on product safety, the EBA said.
“The products with alcohol content up to 8.5% ABV do not apply the excise labels. However, the safety control of such products is carried out. Therefore, it is reasonable to introduce the same logic for products with 1.2-15% ABV,” the EBA reports.
According to the press service, to abolish the excise labels, it is necessary to make changes to the Tax Code. “The business has already submitted the relevant proposals to the government. We hope that they will be taken into account in the near future,” the EBA said.

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PARLIAMENT CUTS EXCISE DUTIES ON FRUIT, BERRY WINES – UKRSADVYNPROM’S HEAD

Ukraine’s Verkhovna Rada has passed an amendment to the Tax Code, according to which the excise duty on fruit and berry wines is reduced to UAH 0.01 per liter, Head of the Ukrsadvynprom association Volodymyr Pechko has said. “The Verkhovna Rada reduced the excise duty on fruit and berry wines and equated it to the excise duty on grape wines. Previously, it was equated with liquor and vodka products. This industry was dilapidated when there was ‘draconian’ legislation. And now the conditions are optimal to resume production of fruit and berry wines,” he told Interfax-Ukraine. According to a comparative table, the tax rate on non-sparkling wines with 1.2-15% ABV will be UAH 0.01 per liter.
According to the head of Ukrsadvynprom, the parliament also agreed on changes, according to which, new producers of wine products will be considered the fourth group of taxpayers using the simplified taxation system.
As reported, the Cabinet of Ministers has increased government support for hop growing, laying of young gardens, vineyards and berries, from UAH 300 million in 2018 to UAH 400 million in 2019.
According to Pechko, this increase in state support is advisable, since in 2018 the industry will use all the allocated funds. “At the summer meeting the budget allocation committee of the Ministry of Agrarian Policy and Food allocated compensation only for planting material, and at a meeting in autumn refrigerators, shock freezing and sorting lines (except seedlings) will also be reimbursed for. Virtually all funds for gardening will be used,” he explained.
At the same time, the head of Ukrsadvynprom noted that to develop the industry, it is necessary to spend more funds on product processing. “We need to finance not only planting, but also processing, sorting and storing fruits and berries. In particular, funds should be allocated for processing – refrigerators, blast chilling chambers for berries, processing into new products – apple chips, dried goods, grape and fruit wine,” Pechko said.
He added that an increase in processing volumes in future will help fruit and berry producers in the years with large harvests. “This year the price of products of further processing – raspberries, currants, apples – has fallen. Purchase prices for apples, for example, at the plants were UAH 0.52/kg, raspberries some UAH 10-12/kg. This is a very low price, considering harvesting costs. The reduction in excise tax on fruit and berry wine will enable enterprises to process their products themselves,” the expert said.
As reported, the Verkhovna Rada redirected UAH 1 billion from the programs of state support for the agro-industrial complex to the Regional Development Fund. The total amount of state support for agriculture will be about UAH 6 billion. According to information on the website of the Ministry of Agrarian Policy and Food, as of November 16 some 35.8% of state support for the agro-industrial complex had been used. Out of UAH 300 million provided for hop growing and gardening, some UAH 101 million has been used.

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PARLIAMENT CUTS EXCISE DUTIES ON FRUIT, BERRY WINES TO UAH 0.01 PER LITER – UKRSADVYNPROM’S HEAD

Ukraine’s Verkhovna Rada has passed an amendment to the Tax Code, according to which the excise duty on fruit and berry wines is reduced to UAH 0.01 per liter, Head of the Ukrsadvynprom association Volodymyr Pechko has said. “The Verkhovna Rada reduced the excise duty on fruit and berry wines and equated it to the excise duty on grape wines. Previously, it was equated with liquor and vodka products. This industry was dilapidated when there was ‘draconian’ legislation. And now the conditions are optimal to resume production of fruit and berry wines,” he told Interfax-Ukraine.
According to a comparative table, the tax rate on non-sparkling wines with 1.2-15% ABV will be UAH 0.01 per liter.
According to the head of Ukrsadvynprom, the parliament also agreed on changes, according to which, new producers of wine products will be considered the fourth group of taxpayers using the simplified taxation system.
As reported, the Cabinet of Ministers has increased government support for hop growing, laying of young gardens, vineyards and berries, from UAH 300 million in 2018 to UAH 400 million in 2019.

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