Over 30,000 Moscow Debtors Face Travel Ban

MOSCOW, December 11 (RIA Novosti) – More than 30,000 Muscovites will be unable to holiday abroad over the New Year holidays due to a travel ban imposed on debtors, the city bailiffs service said on Tuesday.

Moscow has the highest number of court-imposed travel bans over unpaid debts in Russia, bailiffs service deputy chief Sergei Bogdanov said in an interview with RIA Novosti.

“In the first 10 months of 2011, 22,600 travel bans were imposed [in Moscow], compared to 29,700 in the same period this year,” he said, adding the number of bans by the end of the year should exceed 30,000.

Even after a debt has been paid off it could take a week or more before a ban is formally lifted, he said, also warning Muscovites to find out whether they had a debt problem before traveling abroad.

Earlier reports said the Russian authorities could start publishing “black lists” of tax dodgers next year in a move to instill basic financial discipline among Russian citizens and companies.

The Finance Ministry, the Economic Development Ministry and the Federal Tax Service will oversee the release of information online and in the media, according to a plan posted on the government’s website, which sparked immediate criticism from some human rights activists and lawyers, who see the measure as a violation of basic rights, including the right to privacy and protection of personal data.

The Russian authorities are also planning to develop by the end of 2013 measures aimed at fighting tax evasion through the use of offshore jurisdictions.

Leave a comment