What sole proprietors and NPDs in IT will be allowed to do

The discussion “On Entrepreneurial Activity” organized by the Ministry of Economy of Belarus ended on May 25, 2024. This project includes three lists of activities that can be carried out without opening companies:

  1. The types of activities allowed for individual entrepreneurs.
  2. Types of activities allowed as independent professional activities (this applies to payers of professional income tax – NPD).
  3. Types of activities permitted for artisans.

The participants in the public discussion had many questions about the wording of the types of activities. Let’s consider what in the draft lists concerns work performance and the provision of IT-related services.

sole proprietors and NPDs in IT in Belarus

What does the project offer for individual entrepreneurs in the IT field?

The draft list, which includes types of business activities, has an “Information and communication” section. In this section, along with film and video production and postproduction, the following activities are offered for sole proprietors:

  • 62 Computer programming, consulting and other related services.
  • 63119 Other data processing, provision of information placement associated with services and activities (in terms of providing space and time for advertising on the Internet (except for advertising in the media on the Internet).

According to the project, programming will be left to individual entrepreneurs, or individual entrepreneurs will be allowed to engage in programming.

What does the project offer for self-employed professional income taxpayers

Today, there is a list of activities in which, in one paragraph, the types of IT activities available to the self-employed are listed.

Since December 2022, professional income taxpayers can develop websites, install (configure) computer software, restore computers after a failure, repair and maintain computers and peripheral equipment, and train to work on a personal computer. 

In the draft list, the permitted computer-related activities were divided:

  1. Learning to work on a personal computer.
  2. Website development.
  3. Installation (configuration) of computers and software.
  4. Computer recovery after a failure, repair, and maintenance of computers and peripheral equipment.

There are 81 items on the list.

The draft added an item from the rules in force, which, according to the explanations of the Ministry of Taxes and Duties of Belarus, makes it available to almost all IT specialists to work with the payment of professional income tax without registration as an individual entrepreneur:

Performing works (rendering services) on orders from other individuals, including those engaged in individual business activities, and (or) organizations outside the location of the customer (its branch, another separate structural unit), territory or facility under the control of the customer, with the use of the Internet for the performance of such work (provision of such services) and the transfer of the results of the work performed (services rendered) (if such activity is not subject to state accreditation for the right to carry out activities for the development of physical culture and sports). Currently, as in the future, a freelancer cannot hire employees to perform such work and services. He must independently carry out activities for which professional income tax is paid.

Will artisans be able to work in IT?

It is quite logical that there is no IT activity among the types of craft activities in the project. Although the same person can be a freelancer in the IT field with the payment of professional income tax and, simultaneously, an artisan engaged in activities from the list of craft activities unrelated to the IT sphere.

When the lists become effective

The lists of permitted activities will be approved by July 1, 2024. Not all types of activities that are currently available to individual entrepreneurs will remain on the list. 

What should those individual entrepreneurs whose activities will not be included in the approved list

By the end of 2025, individual entrepreneurs registered before October 1, 2024, will have the opportunity to engage in activities not included in the official list of permitted activities. By this date, such entrepreneurs must either cease their business activities or choose another activity from the approved list. 

There is also an opportunity to choose the third option: by December 31, 2025, an individual entrepreneur can create a company with one founder that will engage in activities not included in the list of permitted activities for individual entrepreneurs. For example, wholesale is not included in this list at the moment.

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