Therewith, for January-September 2004, compared with the same period of last year, import increased for all makes of cars. If as many as 130.9 thousand of foreign-made cars were imported for January-September 2003, then for the same period of 2004 – 372.3 thousand. The production expansion rates at joint ventures are also impressive: In 2003, they produced 57 ths. cars, this year it is planned to produce about 120 ths., in plan view for 2005 - 180–200 ths. Against the background of increase of imports (180%) and JV production (150%), an increase of the domestic car production by 12% since the beginning of the year look very modest. Thus, the quality of Russian cars had not reached world standards. Now hopes are placed on the foreign automobile assembly plants in Russia.
At present the Russian Government is working on reduction of customs duties on the car components from 10 to 2%. It is expected that this will lead to decrease in the cost of foreign-made cars assembled in Russia by 7–10%. Reduction of duties on component parts will considerably help, in future, to the domestic producer. Replacing domestic component parts of poor quality by more expensive analogues, it is possible to boost the competitive ability of the domestic automotive sector.
The more so, because the demand for cars by Russians continues to grow. Major cause of the growing demand for foreign-made cars became rise in shopping ability of population. Provision by car per capita in Russia five times lower than in the developed countries, so, in growing of income by population there will be growing a demand for cars.
At the end of November, the Central Bank of the RF decided to radically reduce the mandatory sale standard of export earnings from 25% to 10%. The decision is very important if it is remembered that just with the use of this standard the government in post-socialist Russia tried to affect the inflation and dollar rate of exchange.
For the first time the mandatory sale standard of a part of export earnings was introduced since January 1992 by Decree of the President Boris Eltsin on liberalization of foreign economic activities.
The System was as follows: 40% of earnings into the Republican forex reserves according to special course, 10% -- for forming the Exchange Stabilization Fund of the Central Bank. Since July 1, 1992, the forex reserves and special course were liquidated by the Decree of the President: all 50% of currency earnings had to be sold domestic foreign exchange market. But they said in that decree that the procedure of sale is defined by the Central Bank, which decided as follows: 20% to the domestic foreign exchange market, while 30% -- directly to the Central Bank for renewal of its reserves. And only in a year, beginning from July 1, 1993, the Central Bank permitted to sell all 50% of earnings on the foreign exchange market. No doubt – those were hard times: degressive ruble rate of exchange, huge inflation, shortage of consumer goods.
In 1998, after the crisis (when in the country, again, was a shortage of dollars, a mighty splash of inflation took place, and all over again the commodity shortage became evident because of breakdown of import), the Government once again remembered of the mandatory sale standards. In December, the State Duma approved an increase of standard from 50% to 75%.
After the year 2000, because of ultrahigh oil prices, the Government faced another problem: too many dollars in the country. In 2001, the RF Government prepared a draft law on lowering the rate from 75% to 50%, which was adopted by the State Duma, in July, straight in three readings.
In November of 2002, when a new wording of the Law on currency control and currency regulation was being prepared, the Minister of Finance, Alexei Kudrin stated that it meant that the mandatory sale standard could be from 0% to 30%, and was established by the Central Bank. That standard should constantly be decreasing – it may be raised only when the barrel price of Urals will drop to USD 12. In July of previous year, the Central Bank had already exercised its right and at once twice reduced the standard - to 25%.
N.Volovik Preparing to Restructure State-Financed Entities Network From July 2004, the RF Government began an intensive discussion on measures aimed at optimizing the network of federal state-financed entities and restructuring state-financed entities. Two new organizational and legal forms were developed, namely the autonomous organization and the state ( municipal ) autonomous non-profit organization.
The task of reforming the network of state-financed entities was formulated in the message of the President of the Russian Federation to the RF Federal Assembly in May 2003 and specified thereupon by the «State-Financed Sector Restructuring Principles in the Russian Federation in 2003 - 2004 and for the period till 2006 » drafted by the Ministry of Finance of Russia and approved by the RF Government in September 2003.
In 2004, attempts were made to fulfill this task within the network of federal agencies. In July 2004, the Government Committee for Implementation of Administrative Reform approved a procedure of optimization of state-owned unitary enterprises under the jurisdiction of federal executive agencies14.
Provision was made for breaking these organizations into groups and consequently preparing four lists of organizations being subject to 1) be retained in federal ownership; 2) be assigned to the ownership of the constituent entities of the Russian Federation and municipalities; 3) phased privatization; 4) additional consideration upon adoption of legal acts on privatization procedure of federal state-owned agencies or their transformation into other organizational and legal forms.
Special emphasis was made of state-owned educational institutions. Specified was expedience of transition of educational institutions remained in the federal ownership under the Federal Agency for Organization. However, the Ministry of Healthcare and Social Development and the Ministry of Cultural Affairs of Russia managed to retain medical higher schools and art colleges within their jurisdiction.
Organizations providing building upkeeping services, and buildings and property assigned to federal power authorities were suggested to be included in list 3; organizations providing logistic support and public services for federal public servants, as well as institutions with prevailing extra-budgetary financing on account of budgetary funds received under agreements with state power agencies are suggested to be included into list 4.
The outcome of the attempts aimed at profound restructuring of the state-financed sector within the scope of federal power agencies has come to be fairly modest so far. List 2 includes the majority of the specialized secondary education institutions which used to be under federal ownership.
The development of the proposals on transition of state-financed entities into other organizational and legal forms has become independent and important trend in preparing to reform the state-financed sector.
In the 90s, prior to promulgation of a new Budget Code, state-financed entities were indeed in many ways independent in doing their business, borrowing and utilizing budgetary and extra-budgetary resources. The situation has changed over the last few years. The current policy of the state is aimed at tightening financial discipline in budget planning and utilization, which logically is restraining the old independence of public entities. The real scope of rights of state-financed entities has been gradually shrunk. The state notably intends to bring this scope in compliance with the state-finance organization’s model prescribed by the relevant organizational and legal form. Among the milestones of this policy are transition to fiscal execution of budgetary transactions of state-owned entities; adoption of a new close classification of budgetary expenditures designed for budgetary financing of organizations and approval of their expenditure budgets; and finally, introduction of fiscal execution of transactions on extra-budgetary revenues and expenditures of organizations, which means a strict control over byitem execution of budgetary revenues and expenditures of an organization.
With such developments the major part of state-financed entities would experience discrepancy between the scope of their rights and the requirements for their effectiveness which derive from real conditions of their performance. This relates to the organizations whose revenues are generated in the form of payment from budgetary and extra-budgetary sources of the services they provide. These organizations are healthcare institutions participating in the mandatory medical insurance system and receiving funds in accordance with the volume and quality of medical services; institutions of occupational education and art colleges whose revenues are mostly generated from extra-budgetary sources, etc..
Imposing extra restrictions on the business of such organizations would weaken their incentive in adequate record-keeping of the demands of their direct customers and efficient utilization of their re The minutes of the meeting of the Government Committee for Implementation of Administrative Reform as of July 13, 2004, No. 18.
source potential. It is therefore necessary for the public sector to include not only administratively controlled state-financed entities, but also public organizations entitled to independent business.
The aforementioned « State-Financed Sector Restructuring Principles of the Russian Federation » specify two options of transition of state-financed entities: 1) into a specialized public or municipal non-profit organization, 2) into a public or municipal autonomous non-profit organization. The proposals on these forms of organization were developed by the Ministry of Economic Development of Russia, ГУ-ВШЭ, IET15.
In spring of 2004, the Center for Private Law prepared federal draft laws on the basis of the old developments:
- « On Autonomous Organizations » ;
- « On Public (Municipal) Non-Profit Organizations » ;
- « On Establishment of Procedure, Conditions and Criteria for Public and Municipal Organizations in the Form of Restructuring » ;
- on amendments to the RF Civil Code, the RF Budget Code, and the Federal Law « On NonProfit Organizations ».
Since the last summer, the Draft Laws have been updated under the auspices of the Ministry of Economic Development of Russia.
Each of the two proposed organizational and legal forms provides a public organization with a wider range of authorities, while at the same time releases from the state the responsibility for economic support of its business.
These Draft Laws provide a public (municipal) organization with a special type of right of operating management of property assigned to it by the founder. Unlike the applicable form of organization, the owner shall not assume subsidiary responsibility for the liabilities of an autonomous institution. The autonomous institution itself shall bear responsibility for its liabilities against the property being under its operating management, except for immovable and especially valuable movable property. The types of especially valuable movable property shall be determined by the Government of the Russian Federation.
An autonomous organization shall be entitled to individually dispose of other property (including immovable property) purchased with the revenues generated from its core business. Revenues of the autonomous organization shall be disposed in its own discretion and utilized for the purposes it is designed for.
The founder of an autonomous organization shall be entitled to set tasks for the autonomous organizations it is supposed to finance.
By providing autonomous organizations with a wider autonomy, the state should have more transparent mechanisms of control over their business. A form of control is setting up a supervisory board at an autonomous organization, in the alternative to administrative control by a superior state power agency. The board would include persons appointed by the founder, but they shall neither be expected to be employed at this organization nor receive remuneration for being a member of such collegial body. The body’s function is to supervise the compliance of the organization’s business with its statutory goals, including consideration of its plans and reports, authorization of major transactions, etc.
The form of public (municipal) autonomous non-profit organization implies that its property, including that assigned by the founder during its foundation, shall be owned by this organization. A public (municipal) autonomous non-profit organization shall be entitled to freely dispose of its revenues and the property purchased with these revenues.
The state shall retain control over the business of such organization through the supervisory board to be formed similarly to the board at an autonomous organization. In addition, in this case this collegial body shall be vested not only with supervisory authorities but also the rights of making specific decisions as follows: to approve annual financial plans of an organization and financial performance reports; to review financial performance of an organization over shorter periods of time ( six months, quarter ); to make decisions on compliance of some profitable non-core businesses of an organization with its statutory goals ; and etc.
Improving efficiency of budgetary financing of state-owned institutions and management of state-owned unitary enterprises, Volume I., М.: IET, 2003, pp. 151 - 250.
These forms are expected to complement the existing form of organization. Some of the current state-financed public organizations will retain their form, while the others will be transformed into new ones. For example, transformation into the form of autonomous organization is relevant for infant schools and schools located at medium-size towns and large cities, the majority of public vocational schools, as well as urban out-patient medical facilities and hospitals. In their business they either combine provision of free and fee-based customer services, or their services are covered by insurance companies thus making the foregoing organizations be influenced by the customers or insurance companies.
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