Russian authorities have announced that soldiers and state employees deployed to fight in Ukraine will be exempt from income tax.
According to Al Jazeera, this announcement is Moscow’s latest effort to encourage support for a military campaign against Kyiv that has suffered multiple setbacks and defeats.
The new tax measure concerns all Russian troops fighting in the four Ukrainian territories Moscow has declared as its own – Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson and Zaporizhia – although it does not completely control the four regions.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov on Friday cited an exemption contained in an anti-corruption law, which the Russian authorities published the details of on Thursday evening.
Soldiers, police, members of the security services and other state employees serving in the four regions no longer have to supply information on “their income, their expenditure, their assets”, according to the decree.
Russian forces in Ukraine also have the right, according to the decree, to receive “rewards and gifts” if they are of “a humanitarian character” and received as part of what Russia calls a “special military operation” in Ukraine. Tax relief also applies to the partners and children of those serving and is back-dated to February 24, 2022 – the date Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine.
The Moscow Times reported that Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree on Thursday removing requirements for government officials to disclose their income tax returns for the duration of Russia’s war in Ukraine.
“Prior to the decree, Russian law required civil servants to publicly disclose income tax returns for themselves and their immediate family members in an effort to curtail endemic corruption. Military officers were also required to disclose their tax returns when being appointed or dismissed,” the Moscow Times reported.
“The decree also exempts soldiers fighting in Ukraine as well as members of the security services from releasing their tax returns, as well as officials who have travelled to Russian-annexed regions of Ukraine for work,” the Times reported.
The Kremlin has rolled out a series of incentives for Russians who fight in Ukraine, offering cash bonuses and promising financial aid to families in the case of the death or injury of loved ones.