MOSCOW, July 28 (Reuters) – Igor Sechin, the head of Russia's top oil producer Rosneft, has proposed changing oil taxation to a system based on profit rather than the current system linked to global oil prices, Vedomosti newspaper reported on Monday.
Russia's oil industry has for years lobbied for a profit-based tax and Sechin's support is likely increase the chances of a change, seen as crucial for the sector as it faces declining oil production due to increasing costs and depleted oilfields.
The newspaper said Sechin had written to the First Prime Minister Deputy Igor Shuvalov proposing the profit-based tax. He also criticised recent proposals by the energy and finance ministries, which had offered to cut export duty and increase the mineral extraction tax to balance the taxation system in the oil industry.
Rosneft declined to comment. The Finance Ministry has previously opposed a profit-based tax, saying it would be hard to calculate it.
The government has been tweaking the tax regime with a range of one-off measures to stimulate production of crude and of high-grade refined products. In 2011 it implemented a so-called "60-66" system, which cut the export duty on crude oil and most light oil products.
(Reporting by Vladimir Soldatkin; Editing by Richard Pullin)
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