“The Far Easterner” Status

While working on the draft of National Program for the Development of the Far East until 2025, in the mass media there were active discussion of the demographic problems of the Russian Far East and possible solutions.

One of the most discussed proposals is to assign the Far East special status as a legislatively fixed system of benefits and preferences that stimulates stabilizing the population of the Russian Far East.

The proposal itself is not new, and periodically it can be heard in various public discussions. Our Institution also care about this issue and in late 2018 – early 2019 proposed the model of “The Far Eastern Status”.

The proposed model provides encouraging to live in the Russian Far East through access to benefit packages depending on the number of points earned.

To form point system, it is proposed to consider the following aspects:

— The number of years lived in the Russian Far East (indigenous Far Eastern people will have advantages, but people who come to the Far East will be able to accumulate points by increasing the time of living in the Far Eastern Federal District);

— Contribution to the development of the region (in the form of paid taxes on incomes and property). On this basis, the advantages will be for higher income groups of the population paying taxes;

— The number of children brought up in the family (advantages – in large families (3 and more children);

— Climatic zone of residence (Northerners have advantages).

However, the reason for earning points will not require special actions from the person to prove  the right to them. The generation of points should be  automatically from the official data of state departments and be reflected in the personal account. Reaching a certain number of points will give each Far Eastern person access to a certain set of different preferences. Benefits may include opportunities such as:

— Earlier retirement, which is very relevant in connection with the pension reform of 2018;

— Subsidizing the cost of supervision and maintenance of a pre-school child;

— Additional medical expenses insurance;

— Mortgage interest rate subsidy;

— Increased tax deduction;

— Compensation (full or part) covering expenses for travel to the central part of the country

— Preferential sanatorium-resort treatment, etc.

The system of privileges is supposed to be differential and the person will independently determine which benefit to choose (from the package of preferences according to the number of points scored).

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