Russia’s President Vladimir Putin has granted disgruntled French actor Gerard Depardieu Russian citizenship.
Depardieu has been critical of his native French government lately, claiming that new taxes are working against French residents who work hard to earn their money, Reuters reports. Earlier the acclaimed actor had announced that he would relocate to Belgium and renounce his French citizenship to avoid the new taxes.
A spokesman for Putin told reporters that Depardieu applied for Russian citizenship last month following a statement by Putin that he would be welcome there. That’s when the president said, “If Gerard really wants to have either a residency permit in Russia or a Russian passport, we will assume that this matter is settled and settled positively.”
The tax savings for Depardieu could be high. Russian taxes are a flat 13%, while the proposed new tax regime in France is 75% on income above 1 million euros.
Depardieu claims to have already received his Russian passport and will soon turn in his French passport and other identity papers. The Russian government isn’t requiring the actor to relocate to Russia as a part of granting him citizenship.
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