Kazakhstan threatens Uzbekistan with “mirror” measures in response to excessive excise tax on Kazakhstan’s products
30 july 2013, 16:41
Before the end of August Kazakhstan will consider introducing “mirror” actions towards nations introducing discriminating excise taxes on Kazakhstan-made products, Nerwskaz.ru reports, citing the country’s Minister of Industry and New Technology Asset Issekeshev as saying.
“Kazakh Ministries of Economic Affairs, Industry, and Agriculture are supposed to work out “mirror” measures towards nations introducing discriminating excise tax on Kazakhstan-made products”, he said at a sitting of the Council of Exporters July 30.
He instructed to make up a list of products with regards to which the mirror measures should be introduced. “The Ministries should study all the products supplied to Kazakhstan and all the Kazakhstan-made products on which excessively high excise tax has been introduced; respective suggestions are welcome”, Mr. Issekeshev said.
Vice Prime Minister suggested the recommendations be drafted by August 15 so that the Government could consider them by September.
Notably, such “mirror” measure could be applied to the neighboring Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan. According to Evgeny Gan, head of the Kazakhstan’s Union of Grain Producers, the excise tax imposed on Kazakh grain in Uzbekistan is excessively high: the figure has been hiked from 10% to 15%.
“We broached the subject in November. The Uzbek side assured they were ready to have talks in case sales of Kazakh grain dropped after the new excise tax was introduced. At a sitting of the intergovernmental sitting this year the Uzbek side denied any such readiness”, Mr. gas said.
According to him, last year Kazakhstan supplied 1 million 216 tons of flour to Uzbekistan; this year’s figure only stands at 709 000 tons, which equals to a drop of 45%. “The drop is primarily assigned to the new excise tax. One fourth of Kazakhstan-based flour-making business are facing downtime as flour exports to Uzbekistan stands at 75% of the last year’s figure”, he said.
“We are asking the government to consider a package of measures to tackle the problem, rather than merely one “mirror” measure”, he summed up.