On 21 March 2016, Ukraine signed the Hague Convention of 30 June 2005 on Choice of Court Agreements (“Convention”). This is a major step towards integration of Ukraine into European and global trade and investment environment. Availability of choice of court agreements in Ukraine will ensure yet another instrument of legal protection for businesses engaging in trade with Ukrainian parties or investing into the country.
In late February 2016 a draft law (No. 1004188-6) setting out to regulate the operations of so-called news aggregators was submitted to the State Duma. The reaction from the business community has been mixed, and public authorities are taking different views too. For example, German Klimenko, the Presidential Adviser on Internet Development, supported the initiative, while Deputy Minister Alexey Volin says the Ministry of Communications and Media does not support the draft law, which equates news aggregators and media.
On February 11, 2016 the Federal Law “On Ratifying the Agreement on Common Principles and Rules for the Circulation of Medical Devices (Medical Goods and Medical Equipment) Within the Framework of the Eurasian Economic Union” and Federal Law “On Ratifying the Agreement on Common Principles and Rules for the Circulation of Pharmaceuticals within the Framework of the Eurasian Economic Union” (Agreements) came into force.
Three Russian giants – Sberbank, Gazprom and MTS Get Monopolies on Their Corporate Colours: Shades of Green, Blue and Red
In late 2015 and early 2016, Rospatent registered red, green and blue colours as trademarks for Sberbank, Gazprom and MTS. The companies have, therefore, secured their right to the particular shades: Sberbank now has “green, which is Pantone 349”, MTS has “red, Pantone 485”, and Gazprom has “blue, Pantone 300CV”.
Effective as of 1 January 2016, the National Bank of Ukraine (the “NBU”) adopted Resolution dated 30 December 2015 No. 996 (“Resolution 996”) introducing certain amendments to the procedure of registration of cross-border loans raised by Ukrainian borrowers.
On 29 December 2015, the Russian President signed the Federal Law “On Arbitration in the Russian Federation” (“The Law on Arbitration”) and Federal Law “On Amendments to Certain Laws of the Russian Federation…” providing for fundamental reform of domestic arbitration.
On December 13, 2015, new legislation introducing a number of substantial novelties in the property registration system in Ukraine (the “New Law”) entered into force. Although already modernized in the past years, property registrations have been often seen as the area of typical bureaucracy and transparency issues. As briefly summarized below, the changes proposed in the New Law are generally aimed at facilitation of property registrations by ensuring higher accessibility of registrations.
On November 3, 2015, the President of the Russian Federation signed the Federal Law № 297-FZ on Jurisdictional Immunities of Foreign States and Property of Foreign States in the Russian Federation (the Law). The Law will take effect from January 1, 2016 (Art. 18). By passing the Law, Russia has endorsed the restrictive theory of sovereign immunity entirely, and ruled out the dichotomy which exists between the Code of Civil Procedure and the Code of Commercial Procedure.
The National Bank of Ukraine (the “NBU”) adopted Resolution No. 718 dated 22 October 2015 “On Introduction of Amendments to Resolution of the Management Board of the NBU dated 03 September 2015 No. 581” (the “Resolution 718”) which modified certain of the NBU’s restrictions introduced (or prolonged) in September 2015.