05.04.2011 5502

For three persons

On January 1, 2010, the Customs Union of Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan enters into force. Long-awaited or forced? How will the working conditions for importers change with his appearance? Evgenia Bubnova was looking for future changes in work.

www-cu1.jpgThe essence of integration

The Union assumes the use of a single customs rate for the import of goods for all member countries of the Union, the abolition of customs borders between them and the transfer of customs control from internal to external borders of the Union. There will be a unified customs tariff, a unified commodity nomenclature, a unified list of goods prohibited for import and export. In total, 15 normative documents and thousands of positions are being recruited for approval. The unification ideology is mutual concessions, mutual support and a huge market. At the November meeting of the EurAsEC member states, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev stressed the importance of unification: “For the first time in recent years, we have agreed to transfer part of our state sovereignty to supranational bodies. This supranational body will now decide on the customs tariff ”. The economic effect, calculated by the Institute of Economic Design of the Russian Academy of Sciences, is that the participating countries will receive about 2015% of GDP from integration by 15. However, few people understand how this will work in practice.

Timeline of future events

The phased schedule for the creation of the union was approved by the decision of the heads of state of the EurAsEC in October 2007 of the year and specified on June 9 of 2009.

According to the plans, the union will be created in three stages: until January 1 of 2010 of the year - preliminary, until 1 of July of 2010 of the year - first, until 1 of July of 2011 of the year - second.

At the preliminary stage, the legal framework is created. It ended with the approval of the Unified Customs Tariff on November 27 at a meeting of the presidents of the three countries.

1 January 2010 year. Entering the Common Customs Tariff. This is a list of duties on which suppliers will import imported goods from third countries (for example, from the EU, CIS, China, America and so on). The tariff will be the same for consumer goods, as well as for components and raw materials.

1 April 2010 of the year. Testing the mechanism of the Common Customs Tariff.

1 July 2010 year. Entry into force of the Unified Customs Tariff.

1 July 2010 year. The abolition of customs borders between Russia and Belarus.

1 July 2011 year. Abolition of customs borders between Russia and Kazakhstan.

By July 2011, three countries will have a common customs border.


170,3 million people - the total population of Belarus, Kazakhstan and Russia.

69 million pairs per year - total footwear production.

681,2 million pairs per year - the potential consumption of shoes at the rate of 4 pairs per year for one person.

10% - the share of shoes from the total shoe market that the participating countries can provide through their own production.

Now Russia is predominantly covered by China. In the first half of the 2009 year, the share of Chinese imports in a number of shoe positions ranged from 75 to 95%. According to the Federal Customs Service of the Russian Federation, the total number of 6403 shoes imported to Russia (shoes on soles made of rubber, plastic, leather and leather upper) has nevertheless decreased: in the first quarter of 2009, 26,9 million pairs of shoes from all over the world were imported into the country, which is 11% less than for the same period of 2008 year.

According to the customs of only one Chinese province of Heilongjiang, in the first ten months of this year, through a checkpoint in the region, 116 lots of shoes (812 000 pairs) were exported to Russia. Compared to the same period a year earlier, the supply of shoes increased by 40%.

www-Cu3.jpgNeed comparative data

So far, the negotiators have two main achievements - the adoption of the Customs Code and the agreement in principle on the Unified Customs Tariff. Now the main question remains: if duties are uniform, then how to divide them between countries? For a minute - only Russia plans to receive 516,5 billion rubles from import customs duties! At first, the ideologists of the association proposed collecting duties “in one pot”, and then proportionally distributing it between countries. Now another option is being discussed: each country collects duties on its territory, and then transfers it to partners in a certain proportion. About 90% of payments will be Russian. The principles for the distribution of duties have not yet been determined. Firstly, there is no understanding of what the distribution principle should be. Secondly, difficulties will arise with the currency of settlements. Because each country will collect money in its own currency, transferring money takes time. And taking into account the risks of devaluation of each national currency, the calculations can be very ambiguous. Bankers fear that exchange rates will fluctuate once a month. Consequently, either fixed exchange rates or a common currency will be needed. The first is still more real.



For the first time, the idea to create an integrated trading space between the three countries arose in the 1995 year. In January, an agreement was signed on the establishment of the Customs Union. In the summer of 1995, posts were removed at the borders between Russia and Belarus, and a simplified customs control procedure was introduced at the Russian-Kazakh border. In the 1996 year, Kyrgyzstan joined the agreement, and in the 1998 year, Tajikistan. It was not possible to agree on tariffs, and after Kyrgyzstan joined the WTO, the first union de facto collapsed.


The Customs Union was transformed into the Eurasian Economic Community (EurAsEC) with the same five members, Armenia, Ukraine and Moldova received observer status in it. According to plans, the creation of a free trade zone was only a minimum program, a maximum program - a single financial, energy and transport space. In 2008, we were supposed to have a single Eurasian currency.

Countries were only able to partially agree on tariffs.


In the summer of 2006, a decision is made to create a new union. In 2007, a three-year action plan is approved.


On June 9, the authorities of the three countries agreed to speed up the process of creating the union. Then it was announced that the three countries would join the WTO as a single bloc. The strength of the union will be determined by how coherent and uniform the foreign economic policies of the three countries will be.

Global integration

World history proves that integration economic associations are always beneficial. The question of assessing integration processes in Europe was raised back in the 1915 by V. I. Lenin in his work “On the Slogan of the United States of Europe”. The process of creating the Customs Union in modern Europe began with the signing in 1957 of the Treaty on the EEC. The transitional period from January 1 1958 to July 1 July 1969 obliged EU member states to gradually abolish customs duties and taxes that have an equivalent effect. After 1968, the elimination of customs procedures at the borders between EU Member States began. It was completed only by the 1993 year. Thus, the construction of the Customs Union in Europe took almost 33 years.

The customs union of Russia, Kazakhstan and Belarus, of course, differs from the European one. Its main difference is that it does not have pronounced executive and representative bodies of power. Therefore, all documents that are now being adopted bear the status of international treaties and international agreements.

Official changes

www-Cu4.JPGAccording to the Federal Customs Service of Russia, administration in the customs union will become much easier.

  1. The period for processing a cargo customs declaration has been reduced from three days to two.

2. The deadline for payment of customs duties and taxes becomes equal to the deadline for temporary storage, that is, up to 4 months, while the deadline for payment was established in the Customs Code of the Russian Federation - 15 days;

3. The declarant has the opportunity to amend the customs declaration before and after the release of the goods.

4. The institute of an authorized economic operator has been introduced, using special simplifications, such as:

- temporary storage of goods in their own premises and at sites;

- the ability to release goods before submitting a customs declaration with payment at the time of filing the declaration. This is actually an interest-free deferral of payment for a period of 10 to 40 days;

- the ability to carry out customs operations related to the release of goods in their own premises and in their own territories;

- the ability to arrange transit of goods without making security for customs payments.

However, with all this, the authorized economic operators will contribute security of at least 1 million euros when included in the corresponding register.

The institution of an authorized economic operator is the development of the “special simplified procedures” available in the current Customs Code of the Russian Federation.

5. Any foreign economic activity participant will be able to work anywhere in the member states of the customs union.

6. Carriage opens from the external border of the customs union immediately to the location of the recipient, no matter in which state of the customs union he is.

7. Carriers, including customs carriers, have the right to travel throughout the customs union without applying domestic control to them on the territory of each of the member states of the customs union.

8. The amount of collateral for customs carriers decreased from 20 million rubles to 200 thousand euros (about 9 million rubles).

9. A railway carrier is generally exempted from the need to make provision for the delivery of goods.

10. Instead of instituting customs brokers, the institution of a customs representative is being introduced - similar to how it was done in the Kyoto Convention, while the amount of collateral for activities decreased slightly - from 50 million rubles. up to 1 million euros (this is about 45 million rubles).

11. It was decided to abandon the joint liability of the broker and the payer in the customs union (although such an amendment was recently made to the Russian Customs Code). However, while the other parties are not ready for this. Nevertheless, this joint liability in the Russian Federation will continue to operate, and a transitional period of one year is declared, during which both Belarus and Kazakhstan will introduce the same joint liability of the broker and declarant.

12. The possibility of using an insurance contract as security for customs payments is not provided.

13. Export will be considered the export of goods outside the customs union. That is, the movement of goods from Russia to Kazakhstan will no longer be an export. It will be mutual trade.

14. And finally, the containers will be assigned to vehicles, which will remove a significant number of problems on the control over the temporary importation of containers that we now have.

Ideally, for any country, foreign trade with developed countries should be structured so that, together with high-tech products, new technologies for organizing production flow into the importing country. If we talk about the shoe market, while only new technologies for organizing the service flowed into the country, that is, retail. Developed countries are in no hurry to share production technologies. Perhaps in the new customs union, the process of exchanging goods, technologies and experience will become more efficient. In the meantime, Russian participants are philosophical about the prospect of a union and the potential change in customs duties: they used to work and are now adapting. The great thing is flexibility.

Denis Estifeev, Sales and Marketing Manager, Keds and Sperry Top-Sider, ProSnow:

- As I understand it, in the end there will be a single scheme for everyone, respectively, the same conditions for the passage of deliveries through the borders of these states, both export and import, etc., etc.

For us, as distributors of global brands, this is correct and normal. The more stable and transparent the structures and principles of the passage of goods across borders, the better. This is correct and normal. More than once, our foreign partners suggested taking Belarus and / or Kazakhstan as additional territories, but in connection with the current situation in these markets (unstable, not equally regulated customs relations with Russia for groups of consumer goods)
selling something in bulk according to the pricing scheme that we have for Russia is difficult. If strict regulations are introduced for all, this will establish a healthy competitive environment, and it will be possible to act adequately in the relevant categories of goods.

Tatyana Madassova, official representative of the Italian factories MANAS, Mirage, Bruelle, Moda Ruggi, Gianros:

- We are very positive about the creation of the Customs Union. Even if customs duties rise, we are ready for these crisis changes and we will individually discuss with each client the most winning policy for him and for us.

Representative of a company representing a number of French brands in Russia:

- We are wary of the creation of the Customs Union. Everything has always been done in our country in order to complicate the procedure of customs clearance as much as possible and force businessmen to pay gray bills. So we do not expect anything good.

Marat Mulukov, Calipso company:

- To change the situation in the shoe industry today, it was necessary to give it the opportunity to achieve a certain level of development before that. Of course, due to high duties, prices for shoes will become higher, but they still will not stop buying them. Recently, our company has been emphasizing the assortment of more expensive evening shoes, now it is 60% of our assortment. The increase in customs duties will affect primarily low-cost everyday models. But this will affect us insignificantly: if today the wholesale price of sandals is about 65 dollars, then after the increase in duties it will rise uncritically to 69.

Grigory Paldin, Aram Karapetyan, Tofa company:

- Personally, we support the increase in customs duties. We believe this will somehow restore the balance in the market and support domestic producers.

Sergey Ivanov, Covani company: - The situation with customs duties on shoes one-on-one resembles the one that recently happened with duties on cars: prices have risen, but there is no sense. The domestic automobile industry did not feel better. The same thing will happen with the shoe industry. There are no bases for the production of shoes in Russia, and the companies that are doing this here, and not in China or Turkey, as the majority, are scanty. And then some of them partially moved their production there. Therefore, for the sake of whom all this is done - it is not clear.

On January 1, 2010, the Customs Union of Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan enters into force. Long-awaited or forced? How will the working conditions for importers change with his appearance? The future ...
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