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Russia Refuses to Pay Taxes on Black Sea Fleet Cargoes

Russia Refuses to Pay Taxes on Black Sea Fleet Cargoes 07.11.2012
Text: Rosbalt
Photo: rexfeatures.com
Russia's Black Sea Fleet (BSF) refused to pay taxes on diesel fuel imported to Ukraine from Russia. Up to now, Russia has been faithfully paying Ukraine these taxes, said a source in Sevastopol. As for him, almost half of Sevastopol's customs income was fees paid by Black Sea Fleet.

Russian officers explain there were no reasons for such payments. They refer to international agreements and Ukraine's legislation saying there are no items imposing value added tax and excise tax upon materials produced in Russia and imported to Ukraine for Black Sea Fleet's needs, reports Krym.net.

Kiev denies this assumption blankly. Ukraine notified Russian party on possible penalties to the extent of 300% of fuel cost. In addition, refueling of Russian naval ships can be blocked.

Russian officers told that replenishment oiler Ivan Bubnov had delivered diesel fuel to Sevastopol for Black Sea Fleet two times, late in Sept and early in Oct. Prior to that, the fleet's authorities were instructed to declare fuel in accordance with the BSF status provided by bilateral agreements and Ukrainian legislation. It means that payment columns in the customs entry form must not be filled.

According to Russian military, talks on execution of Russian military cargoes for Black Sea Fleet started in spring of 2011 but were suspended by Ukraine in Nov 2011. As for Russian mariners, breakdown of negotiations was caused by inability to explain why the Russian fleet must pay value added tax and excise tax. In Jan 2012, Russia demanded refunding of taxes paid to Ukraine in 2009-2011 (approx. $35 mln).

The source in Black Sea Fleet HQ reported that over 14,000 tons of diesel fuel was under control of Ukraine at the time. Theoretically, Kiev may decline refueling Russian ships with that fuel. In that case, Russia will claim against intervention in interior affairs of military units, said the officer. According to available information, Russian foreign ministry is getting involved in this issue. Experts admit that taxes imposed upon BSF materials would soon come to the forefront of Russian-Ukrainian relationship instead of import ban on Ukrainian cheese to Russia.

As was earlier reported, in Apr 2012 Russian foreign ministry brought up the need to abolish taxes on cargoes for Russian Black Sea Fleet deployed in Crimea, Ukraine. Moscow annually spends $10-15 for that.

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