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12
August

Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement with Cyprus will be preserved

As it became known earlier, during the negotiations Cyprus agreed to the conditions of Russia to amend the agreement on the avoidance of double taxation in terms of increasing the withholding tax to 15% in respect of dividends and interest. All of us are now waiting for the new reality of the Cyprus offshore. The same goes for Malta and Luxembourg. According to information from Deputy Finance Minister Alexei Sazanov, these countries "in general" agreed to the conditions proposed by Russia to revise tax agreements.

Who will be next in line? Find the answer in a brief analysis by VEGAS LEX.

Alexander Sitnikov, Managing partner
Yuriy Ivanov, Head of Tax practice
25
May

SPIC 2.0: Making the First Move

The Ministry of Industry and Trade of Russia declared that from May 25 to June 5, 2020 investors may apply for including their technologies into the list of high technologies. This list is the most important element required for the new special investment contract (SPIC) model to function.

Alexander Sitnikov, Managing partner
Maxim Grigoryev, Partner, Head of Southern directorate, Head of special projects
Alexandra Vasyukhnova, Partner, Head of Technology and Investment group
Natalia Abtseshko, Head of International projects group
Artem Gasparyan, Associate of Southern directorate
13
August

SPIC 2.0: Mechanism for development of innovations and introduction of modern technologies

On 2 August 2019, the President of the Russian Federation signed a legislative package concerning significant reforms for the mechanism of special investment contracts. Amendments refer to legal regulation in industrial policy and affect tax and fiscal legislation.

In this review, VEGAS LEX experts have analyzed changes, goals and prospects of the updated SPIC mechanism.

Alexander Sitnikov, Managing partner
Maxim Grigoryev, Partner, Head of Southern directorate, Head of special projects
Alexandra Vasyukhnova, Partner, Head of Technology and Investment group
Natalia Abtseshko, Head of International projects group
Artem Gasparyan, Associate of Southern directorate
18
May

Overview of the practice in application by the FAS Russia of antimonopoly legislation for March-April 2018

The practice in application of the provisions of antimonopoly legislation is of a particular importance. Thus, having the knowledge of the current approaches to application of the antimonopoly legislation’s provisions, it is possible to forecast the possibilities and expediency of appealing the acts of antimonopoly authorities in the administrative or judicial proceedings. The VEGAS LEX law firm is providing you with an overview of the practice in application of the antimonopoly legislation’s provisions in March-April 2018.

Alexandra Vasyukhnova, Partner, Head of Technology and Investment group
28
April

Commercial policy of pharmaceutical company: objectives and conditions

In the recent years, the interest of the pharmaceutical industry participants in the matters related to drafting and application of commercial policies is not declining. Within the framework of this overview, we shall do our best to answer some topical issues relating to application of commercial policies by the business entities that occupy a dominant position on the pharmaceuticals markets and on the medical products markets.

2
February

Special investment contract under new rules (SPIC 1.1)

Just before New Year’s the Government of the Russian Federation changed the rules for concluding special investment contracts (SPIC). The new rules are meant to improve the SPIC mechanism taking into account its previous application. The amendments will come into force on June 18, 2018 but given the duration of investment planning and the procedure of concluding the contract, it would be useful to know about these changes now.

Maxim Grigoryev, Partner, Head of Southern directorate, Head of special projects
Artem Gasparyan, Associate of Southern directorate
15
January

Typical disputes under contracts that involve developing and implementing software 2016-2017

This overview has put together examples of court cases that illustrate the types of disputes that are often encountered arising from the performance of contracts to develop and implement software (PO). Every dispute focuses on one or two legal issues, and permits certain practical conclusions to be drawn that can be beneficial for specialists who work in this area.

Alexandra Vasyukhnova, Partner, Head of Technology and Investment group
Dmitry Borodin, Senior associate of Technologies and Investments Group
29
November

Currency controls: the new rules for dealing with banks

In November 2017, two regulatory acts were published that made significant adjustments to the mechanisms for banks to control hard currency. The first one is Guideline Manual No. 181-И, issued by the Bank of Russia (the Central Bank), that must be followed starting January 1st, 2018 to record and furnish reporting on operations with hard currency (hereinafter Manual No. 181-И). The Manual is supposed to loosen currency controls by decreasing the burden borne by residents. The second act has the opposite effect, and is geared toward tightening currency controls. This is Federal Law No. 325-FZ, which, when it enters into force on May 14th, 2018, will make it easier for banks to respond to any violations of currency law, and draws distinctions between the types of administrative liability in this area.

Victor Petrov, Head of Litigation practice
Ilya Shengeliya, Project manager Southern directorate
9
November

Personal data protection in Russia: a brief overview

The protection of personal data is becoming one of today’s most pressing issues, resulting in modernization of national legislation on personal data. Federal Law No. 152-FZ dated July 27, 2006 "On Personal Data" (as amended) (hereinafter The Law
Personal Data) defines the basics of personal data regulation in Russia. The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which will take effect in May 2018, gives rise to more discussion than any other supranational act. The GDPR will be directly applicable to a number of Russian companies, since they collect data of European citizens.

9
October

VEGAS Academy: regulatory updates for the Russian pharmaceutical sector, September 2017

Within the framework of VEGAS Academy platform, we continue our monthly series of video updates on the key regulatory developments in the Russian pharmaceutical sector (in English language).

Сollective of authors, VEGAS LEX
4
August

Russia to initiate termination of double tax treaty with Cyprus

In early April, Russia sent a letter offering to amend the text of the agreement on avoidance of double taxation (DTT) by increasing tax rates in terms of taxable dividends and interest payments to Cyprus. However, after almost four months of negotiations, the parties failed to reach a consensus.

According to the information published by the Russian Ministry of Finance, with due regard to close economic and historical ties between the two states, the Russian party formulated options for a compromise and offered to swiftly hold (the ongoing week) face-to-face negotiations in Cyprus but received a refusal. Consequently, Russia’s Ministry of Finance announced that it would initiate denunciation of the DTT.

Alexander Sitnikov, Managing partner
Yuriy Ivanov, Head of Tax practice
6
March

Antitrust Compliance Law Adopted

On March 1, 2020, the President of the Russian Federation signed a law amending the Law on the Protection of Competition and at the level of federal legislation defines the concept of antitrust compliance and the basic requirements for it.

Alexander Sitnikov, Managing partner
Ksenia Podguzova, Senior Associate of Commercial group
Alina Zaitseva, Associate of Commercial group
4
June

Analysis of competitive situation on digital markets: legislative initiatives and Russian experience

In the “fifth antimonopoly package”, Federal Antimonopoly Service of Russia provides for the possibility to treat, in certain circumstances, the business entity, which owns infrastructure (platform) that is intended to organize and ensure cooperation of business entities and (or) consumers and which holds a commodities market share of less than 35 %, as occupying a dominant position. Specifically, it refers to the cases where network effects give such entity an opportunity to exercise a dominant influence on the general conditions of circulation of commodities and (or) remove other entities from the market and (or) impede access to the respective commodities market by other business entities.

Alexandra Vasyukhnova, Partner, Head of Technology and Investment group
Dmitry Borodin, Senior associate of Technologies and Investments Group
17
May

Protection of business reputation on the Internet will become more efficient

According to the statistics of the Supreme Court of the Russian Federation, the number of arbitration cases involving claims for protection of business reputation is increasing year by year. Specifically, in 2017, the number of satisfied claims under such cases increased almost double as compared to 2016. Increasingly, the data posted on the Internet becomes the reason for lodging a claim for protection of business reputation. At the same time, judicial defence in such cases becomes more complicated because of the lack of the efficient mechanism of enforcement of court judgments concerning the removal of damaging information. The recent legislative changes regarding enforcement proceedings and information are focused on creation of such mechanism.

Victor Petrov, Head of Litigation practice
Dmitry Borodin, Senior associate of Technologies and Investments Group
21
March

From equivalence to interchangeability and vice versa

Interchangeability of medicines has always been of concern to pharma market participants. However, year by year, this issue brings up more questions than answers. From January 2018 the information on interchangeability of medicines will be subject to inclusion into the state register of medicines.

15
January

Federal Law No. 223-FZ: only tighten, never loosen

On December 31st, 2017 Federal Law No. 505 "On amending certain Russian Federation legislative enactments" was signed (hereinafter Amendments). The amendments introduce substantial changes into Federal Law No. 223-FZ "On procuring goods, work, and services by certain types of legal entities" dated July 18th, 2011 (hereinafter Federal Law No. 223-FZ).

Alexandra Vasyukhnova, Partner, Head of Technology and Investment group
28
December

Failure of the courts to use statutory instruments when resolving disputes – interpretations from the Russian Federation Constitutional Court

By virtue of Section 2, Article 13 in the Russian Federation Arbitration Procedural Code, an arbitration court that has, while reviewing a court case, established that there is a discrepancy between one statutory instrument and another statutory instrument that possesses greater legal validity, including by publishing it and exceeding the scope of authority, adopts the court order that corresponds to the statutory instrument that possesses greater legal validity. This discretionary authority on the part of the arbitration court is aimed toward protecting the interests of the parties involved in litigation, including in those instances where contesting the statutory instrument is impossible under the rules of the administrative proceedings because it was rescinded, either in accordance with judicial or administrative procedures, or because it has expired.

Evgeniy Rodin, Partner, Head of Energy practice
Alexander Kiselev, Senior associate of Energy practice
13
November

Advertising legal requirements (Practical overview)

Advertising is a socioeconomic phenomenon whose uniqueness is marked by the continuous development of techniques and methods to share advertising information with consumers. Companies are always moving forward, creating new approaches how to produce advertising. This requires advertisers to be guided by law enforcement practices. This alert does not presume to analyze the entire scope of legal requirements and constraints that cover advertising, but it is intended to provide a brief practical overview of the main legal restrictions for advertising.

7
November

VEGAS Academy: regulatory updates for the Russian pharmaceutical sector, October 2017

Within the framework of VEGAS Academy platform, we continue our monthly series of video updates on the key regulatory developments in the Russian pharmaceutical sector (in English language).

Сollective of authors, VEGAS LEX
28
September

Checklists: what to expect from the new audit mechanism

Starting October 1st, 2017 certain supervisory and audit authorities are supposed to use checklists hat have questions used to gather information. This new mechanism is designed to solve several tasks at once: to streamline, simplify, and increase the transparency of audits. This is all for the auditors. However, people who are involved in business will also benefit from this tool if they can adopt the right approach.

Maxim Grigoryev, Partner, Head of Southern directorate, Head of special projects
Ilya Shengeliya, Project manager Southern directorate
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