Control over Russian companies of strategic importance was intensified. By Margarita Podledneva, Product Development and Account Manager, GSS Russia
New laws that tighten the rules regarding ownership and control over strategically important companies came into force in July. They are amending the Federal Laws on Foreign Investments in the Russian Federation and on Foreign Investments in Companies of Strategic Importance for the Defence and Security of the Russian Federation.
The main changes are the following:
- A deal with the participation of foreign investors concerning strategically important companies may be passed for consideration on to the Governmental Commission on Monitoring of Foreign Investments if such a decision is taken by the Prime Minister of the Russian Federation;
- Obtainment of control over strategically important companies by offshore companies is forbidden. All deals by an offshore company resulting in the acquisition of a certain percentage of votes (25% to 50%-) in companies of strategic importance have to be approved by the Governmental Commission;
- The list of activities which have strategic importance for the defence and security of the Russian Federation has been expanded and now includes 46 sectors;
- The foreign investor category now includes Russian citizens who possess dual citizenship and establishes obligations of such investors towards procuring the preliminary approval of deals concerning strategically important companies;
- New penalties have been introduced in case a foreign investor fails to provide information on the possession of 5% or more of shares of a strategically important company to the Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service, up to the loss of a voting right at a general shareholders’ meeting.
Product Development and Account Management Section, GSS Russia