In 2022, not only foreign but also Russian companies were allowed to become residents of the SAR (see “Kommersant” dated February 17, 2022). With the adoption of the amendments, the possibility of their moving from federal cities (Moscow, St. Petersburg and Sevastopol) will be limited. Now they may not let go of a company whose contribution to income tax is 1%. With the amendments, this figure is reduced to 0.1%. At the same time, for other organizations that are not such significant taxpayers, the time in which it is necessary to warn the “home” region (this applies to any subjects) about the “move” is reduced - from six months to a month.
Lawyers have ambivalent assessments of these changes. As noted by Alexander Tokarev, a partner in the group providing services in the field of international tax planning and restructuring at Kept, ATS are more in demand for the redomiciliation of foreign companies, especially from European jurisdictions (primarily Cyprus). TeDo tax practice partner Galina Naumenko, on the contrary, notes the interest of a number of Russian companies in this regime, but the six-month period “makes this option almost unworkable.” However, adds Anastasia Vasilyeva, head of tax practice at NSV Consulting, restrictions for federal cities will reduce the number of people wishing to move, since there is little point in the authorities letting taxpayers go.
At the same time, by the second reading, provisions appeared in the text of the law regarding transactions for the transfer to Russian beneficiaries of direct ownership of shares and shares in economically significant organizations (ESO) - as part of excluding foreign holding companies from the chain of ownership. Let us remember that we are talking about companies that meet one of the criteria: annual revenue is more than 75 billion rubles, the value of assets is more than 150 billion rubles, the staff is more than 4 thousand people, the company’s work in critical industries, as well as the corresponding the share of direct or indirect participation of Russian beneficiaries in a foreign holding (as a general rule - more than 50%; see “Kommersant” dated November 13). According to the adopted law, it is planned to ensure the tax neutrality of such transactions - in particular, they will not be subject to personal income tax and income tax, including in the case of transfer of assets not in the name of the beneficiary subject to sanctions, but in another person. According to Anastasia Vasilyeva, these are important changes aimed at providing support to ESOs and at leveling the adverse consequences faced by Russian beneficiaries of Russian assets structured through foreign layers.