In June, Russia’s Ministry of Economic Development published an extended version of a draft law (Regulation.Gov.ru, 09.06.2018) that – if approved – would excuse companies from disclosing corporate information.

According to the new law, the government will have the following rights: (1) to define cases in which companies may not disclose information, (2) to identify individual’s whose information may be disclosed only in part, and (3) to define the cases in which the Central Bank would not have to publicly disclose information about liquidation and the restructuring of banks (RBC, 09.06.2018).

The latest addition to the law also suggests that the Federal Antimonopoly Service should not have to disclose information about corporate deals between Russia’s largest firms (RBC, 09.06.2018).

Key Points

  • The proposed legal amendments are part of a recent campaign by the Russian government aimed at helping loyal companies avoid sanctions and/or minimise their impact.
  • However, the arbitrary application of the law (i.e. only if the government decides so) indicates that the perks will likely be reserved to the largest and best-connected companies.
  • If approved, companies’ rights of non-disclosure will further diminish what positive steps have been made to increase business transparency in Russia.