Oil, gas tax revenue driving Russia forward

Federal tax director tells President Putin he can "feel this revival."
By Daniel J. Graeber Follow @dan_graeber Contact the Author   |  Nov. 20, 2017 at 8:00 AM
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Nov. 20 (UPI) -- Revenue collected from the oil and natural gas industry in Russia is in part behind the 19 percent gain from last year, a federal tax director said Monday.

Mikhail Mishustin, the head of the Federal Taxation Service, told Russian President Vladimir Putin that the budget has received $240 billion in tax collections over the last 10 months, which was 19.1 percent higher than during the same period one year ago.

"I would like to note that the increase is largely due to the oil and gas industry that accounts for 60 percent of the revenue increase," he said.

Total Russian crude oil production is up 1.8 percent from January. The nation's energy ministry published no data for natural gas production, though the country is a main supplier to the European economy. Total crude oil exports are up 5 percent since the beginning of the year.

The Russian Central Bank said inflation is holding steady at it's target rate of around 4 percent, but moved in a range this year between 3.3 percent and 4.4 percent. Central Bank Gov. Elvira Nabiullina in September said that, in terms of the price of oil, the average for the year should be around $50 per barrel.

Crude oil prices are supported by a production cut agreement led by the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, though Russia is the largest non-member state contributor. Last week, Russian energy officials said the current market situation was agreeable, giving support to sentiment that the country was not behind a long-term extension.

In her September report, the Central Bank chief said if OPEC doesn't extend the deal, oil prices could fall to $40 per barrel by the end of the year, which was her forecast for the price point in 2018.

The federal tax revenue director told the president most of the gains came for corporate tax revenue for the oil and gas industry, though the economy in general seemed to be functioning as expected.

"We can feel this revival," Mishustin said.

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