Analytical Center hosted an expert discussion on the implementation of paragraphs 7.1 and 7.2 of the Action Plan (“roadmap”) “Competition development and improvement of antimonopoly policy”.
During the event, experts discussed the draft federal law “On Amendments to the Article 37 of the Federal Law “On Protection of Competition” to introduce the possibility of compensation in the amount of 1% to 15% of the cost of the goods sold in violation of the antimonopoly legislation. The experts also talked about the prospects for the implementation of legal mechanisms for protecting the rights and legitimate interests of a certain group of individuals in the courts of law.
Head of the Legal Department of the FAS Russia Sergey Puzyrevskiy informed that the Government of the Russian Federation ordered to increase the level of protection of consumers' rights, and reduce the possibility of assessment of damages in a multiple size for violation of the law on protection of competition. “Having analyzed the current situation regarding the consequences of antimonopoly legislation violation, we can say that among the 3 types of legal liability: criminal, civil or administrative, operates only the latest - said the official. – It has a clearly regulated responsibility mechanism; the parameters of administrative penalties are specified. According to Mr. Puzyrevskiy, the reasons for this are several factors: inequality of subjects involved in the procedure (thus, monopolies have more opportunities to defend their interests in the courts of law), the complexity of the existing mechanism for damages assessment, etc.
“The idea of the amendments is to use, in addition to the traditional method of civil protection – payment for damages, an alternative method – compensation” - said Mr. Puzyrevskiy. According to him, this procedure cannot be used for any kind of antimonopoly violations, but when it concerns the purchase of goods, it will be very effective.
Head of Competition Practice at «Art De Lex» law firm Yaroslav Kulik said that the collection of suggestions and comments on the formation of structures of class actions in the Russian legislation is still being conducted at the moment. According to him, the draft law provided by the Russian Ministry of Justice doesn’t include a list of areas of legal relations, where they will be allowed to be used, it is also necessary to simplify the procedure for grouping.
Lawyer at the Russian Projects Department at the General Directorate of “Severstal” OJSC Vadim Belov spoke on behalf of the RSPP Committee on competition development. “Introduction of such forms of liability as compensation for violation of antimonopoly legislation, does not comply with the Civil Code of the Russian Federation, because the Civil Code stipulates the exact cases where compensation may be paid instead of damages,” - said the expert. According to him, these amendments are untimely and unjustified.
Some participants of the event did not agree with the expert and considered that the amendments comply with foreign standards and are necessary for competition development and improvement of antimonopoly policy in our country.
The expert discussion was attended by representatives of the federal government, business and expert community.