Belarus

Corporate - Deductions

Last reviewed - 27 January 2020

Deductible expenses include all the usual costs that an entity actually incurs for the purpose of earning income or receiving economic benefit, unless the Tax Code of Belarus or presidential regulations provide otherwise.

Depreciation

Assets may be depreciated using the directly proportional (straight-line) depreciation method, indirect disproportionate depreciation methods, and productive depreciation methods. Depreciation may not exceed maximum rates established by the law.

Almost all types of fixed assets (buildings, premises, equipment, vehicles) are depreciated for tax purposes in accordance with the established procedures. Land plots are not depreciated. There are many different depreciation rates established for different types of fixed assets. Generally, fixed assets may be divided into five basic groups. The approximate generalised rates per group of asset are presented below:

Group of assets Description of the assets Annual depreciation rate (%)
1 Buildings and constructions, premises 0,8-2
2 Vehicles and equipment 10
3 Cars and vehicles 12.5
4 Inventories (furniture, tools, etc.) 10
5 Computers and other related devices 20

Application of an investment deduction under the tax rules is possible in addition to the depreciation deduction provided by the accounting legislation, i.e. taxpayers are entitled to classify/record part of the initial value of fixed assets, as well as investment in reconstruction, as costs of production and supply of goods (works, services) for CIT purposes. The amount of the investment deduction is limited to 15% of the initial value or value of investment in reconstruction with regard to buildings and constructions and to 30% of the initial value with regard to machines, equipment, and vehicles.

An investment deduction is applied in a month starting from which:

  • depreciation charges are calculated for accounting purposes and
  • the value of investment in reconstruction increased the initial value of fixed assets in accounting records.

An investment deduction cannot be applied with regard to fixed assets received by a taxpayer free of charge.

Annual re-evaluation of fixed assets is required only with regard to buildings, constructions, and transfer units, provided the inflation rate in November of the current year has reached 100% for the period from the date of the prior mandatory re-evaluation. A particular company is entitled to re-evaluate fixed assets on its own initiative as of 1 January of the year following the reporting one.

Goodwill

Goodwill and personnel experience cannot be recognised as intangible assets for CIT purposes.

Start-up expenses

Deduction of start-up expenses is not possible.

Interest expenses

Interest expenses are generally deducted for CIT purposes. Interest on past due loans is treated as limited expenses and can be deducted for CIT purposes within 1% of taxpayer's revenue (VAT inclusive). Thin capitalisation restrictions must also be considered (see Thin capitalisation in the Group taxation section).

Bad debt

Bad debts are deductible only if proved and specific criteria are met.

Charitable contributions

Amounts not exceeding 10% of an entity’s gross profit granted to health, education, social welfare, culture, and sports state institutions; religious organisations; social services institutions; and public associations (e.g. ‘Belarusian Society of Disabled Persons’, ‘Belarusian Society of Deaf Persons’, ‘Belarusian Fellowship of Visually Impaired Persons’, ‘Belarusian Children’s Fund’, and ‘Belarusian Children’s Hospice’), or spent for acquisition of goods, works, or services for the benefit of the named institutions, are exempt from CIT.

Taxes

Generally, the following taxes, dues, and other compulsory charges to the state authorities are deductible for CIT purposes:

  • Excise taxes paid at purchasing/importation of excisable goods to be used in manufacturing of goods or provision of works and services in Belarus, with some exceptions.
  • Ecological tax.
  • Real estate tax.
  • Land tax.
  • Tax on natural resources.
  • State dues.
  • Offshore charge.
  • Tax on providers.
  • Payments for social and other mandatory security.

The following taxes shall not be deducted for CIT purposes:

  • VAT paid, with certain exceptions (see below).
  • CIT.

VAT can be treated as deductible for CIT purposes only if acquired goods, works, or services are used for production or sale of goods, works, or services that are VAT exempt.

Other significant items

On 1 January 2019, the 'limited expenses' concept was introduced by the tax law for CIT purposes. Limited expenses, among others, cover a special type of expenses called 'other expenses'. While limited expenses generally existed and reduced CIT base before the new Tax Code was adopted, 'other expenses' include expenses that either have never been recognised for CIT purposes before (e.g. delayed interest on loans) or those that were recognised without limits before 2019 and will be subject to a limited recognition from 2019 on (e.g. representation expenses).

'Other expenses' can decrease the CIT base only in the amount of 1% from the revenue calculated, VAT inclusive.

Below are examples of 'other expenses':

  • Certain payments under employment contracts (e.g. annual bonuses, certain types of vacation compensation).
  • Costs for holding certain events (e.g. official ceremonial events arranged to celebrate state
  • holidays).
  • Payments to the members of the Supervisory Board.
  • Representation expenses.
  • Certain expenses on transporting the customers/consumers.
  • Compensation for using private vehicles/rent.
  • Membership fees.
  • Delayed interest on loans.

To be deductible, expenses must be economically justified. The expenses that cannot be economically justified are as follows: (i) expenses for goods, works, services, and property rights actually not received by a taxpayer, (ii) expenses for services/works of the individual entrepreneur who is an employee of the taxpayer in case such services/works are related to one’s working duties, and (iii) expenses for services/works of a taxpayer's parent company or subsidiary in case such services/works are related to working duties of the taxpayer's employees.

Net operating losses

Belarusian companies are given the possibility to recognise in the current tax period the tax losses incurred in the previous tax periods. Taxpayers are entitled to carry forward losses incurred in 2011 and subsequent tax periods. Losses can be carried forward only for ten years after the tax period when the losses have occurred.

However, tax loss carryforward is not applied to losses:

  • incurred as a result of activities outside Belarus if a company is registered as a taxpayer in a foreign state with regard to such activities, or
  • incurred in a tax period when a company was entitled to apply CIT relief (tax exemption) established for several tax periods.

Tax losses cannot be carried forward if, following the results of a relevant previous tax period (calendar year), a taxpayer received book income (profits), notwithstanding the fact that losses available to be carried forward in line with the Tax Code were actually suffered or not.

Tax losses cannot be carried back in Belarus.

Payments to foreign affiliates

Payments to foreign affiliates of a Belarusian resident legal entity in amounts of financing aimed to cover ongoing costs thereof are deductible for CIT purposes in Belarus.