THE URGENT TASK: IVAN SHIENOK SUMMARIZED THE RESULTS OF THE DISCUSSION OF THE ASSOCIATION OF LAWYERS OF RUSSIA
Advokatskaya Gazeta published a synthesis article by the Head of Tax Law Practice of Infralex Ivan Shienok, summarizing the results of the discussion of the Association of Lawyers of Russia approaches to taxation of "digital assets." According to Ivan: "Today there is a need for detailed development of new legal institutions regulating both the creation of assets themselves and their turnover." While in many countries legal regulation in this sphere is actively developing, Russia in this issue risks being among outsiders in the future. The draft Federal Law "On Digital Financial Assets" is still in the State Duma. Possible changes in tax legislation are still being discussed exclusively among experts. At the level of the Ministry of Finance of the Russian Federation and the Federal Tax Service of the Russian Federation, only certain issues of taxation received at least a temporary solution. The lawyer of Infralex analyzed the views of the participants of the discussion and identified key issues for the legislative regulation of taxation of "digital assets." Among such questions Ivan Shienok defines:
- The need to take a decision in principle on the feasibility of introducing special taxes for taxation of digital transactions or on the possibility of extending to them the existing system of taxation. Most experts agree that there is no such need.
- Whether "digital assets" for tax purposes should be treated as a commodity (property right) or be equated with cash. "In our view, treating digital assets as property rights is more likely. Their equation with money at least requires not only their participation in the economy, but their actual use by subjects on a large scale as a universal means of payment, which is not observed at the moment, "- believes the expert.
- Whether the acquisition of "digital assets" should be considered as a person 's income or only as an opportunity to generate income in the future (for example, when they are sold). According to counsel: "It is obvious that the receipt of assets by the seller as payment of the price of goods is economically significantly different from their purchase for money, and the" creation "of digital rights objects in the mining process differs from the purchase of existing objects from third parties."
- The legislator also needs to decide on the issue of VAT taxation of transactions on transfer of digital assets. "It seems that transactions with" digital assets "should not be subject to VAT, as they are in line with financial transactions exempt from taxation (for example, transactions with securities)," - said Ivan Shienok. In general, according to the head of Tax Law practiceof Infralex, the use of "digital assets" by taxpayers requires significant changes in the Tax Code of the Russian Federation.
"Tax rules should take into account economic models of use of" digital assets "- belief Ivan Shienok
If some of the issues, such as developing approaches to determining the value of digital assets, can theoretically be addressed by the law enforcement efforts, others will require a direct legislative solution.