ANDREY TSYGANOV: WE NEED A FULLY-FLEDGED DIALOGUE AND A POSSIBILITY TO EXCHANGE OPINIONS
Representatives of the European Union came to FAS to discuss forced licensing, bilateral and international cooperation
On 17 December 2019, Deputy Head of FAS Andrey Tsyganov held talks with Laurent Bardon, Head of Economics and Trade Section of the European Union Delegation to the Russian Federation. The parties discussed bilateral cooperation between FAS and the EU in the course of investigating case in violating the antimonopoly law, international cooperation of FAS and Russian experience of introducing forced licensing.
“We constantly cooperate with the European Commission on the issues within our competence. Digitalization, personal data protection, the balance between intellectual property and competition – these are the issues facing all of us, and possibility to listen to each other is essential”, said Andrey Tsyganov. “For example, FAS is currently devising guidelines on mergers and acquisitions, and to improve the document we’d like to know an expert opinion of the European Commission that has colossal experience in merger consideration”.
He continued that “FAS is interested in discussing and in-depth investigation of issues related to the role of the state in the economy, the intellectual property rights, in the healthcare sector. Russia has interesting experience and we are ready to share it”.
Deputy Head of FAS informed his foreign colleagues about the state policy with regard to developing competition in Russia and an instruction given to FAS to draft a National Competition Development Plan for the next strategic period – 2021 – 2025:
“The new National Plan will be ready by mid-2020. It indicates that development of competition in the Russian Federation is not a one-off event but a consistent policy of the state in the economic sphere”.
Head of FAS Department for Control over Social Sphere and Trade, Timophei Nizhegorodtsev outlined a FAS-drafted act on forced licensing.
The draft law specifies that in case of extreme necessity related to state defence and security, protection of life and health of the population, the Government of the Russian Federation can make a decision to use an invention, useful model or industrial prototype without consent of a patent-holder, notifying the latter about it within the shortest time period and paying an adequate compensation. The Government approves how the size of compensation should be determined and the payment procedure.
Timophei Nizhegorodtsev shared Russian experience of regulating medicinal drugs prices, in particular, improving the pricing system and a transition from the costs method to indicative parameters.
He said that “devising a price regulation method based on comparing prices in the reference countries, we do not attempt to fix the lowest prices in the world here, in Russia. Compiling a list of reference countries, we excluded countries with the lowest and highest prices from the outset and left the middle. We perform ongoing monitoring because drug prices must be based on market mechanisms. We developed this method based on our multi-year enforcement experience in this field”.
Andrey Tsyganov shared experience of FAS international cooperation.
“We are active because we have things to say. 25 years ago we were mostly listening, particularly, to our European colleagues who provided us technical support in competition development. Now we more need a fully fledged dialogue and possibility to exchange opinions”.
Deputy Head of FAS highlighted formats of international cooperation such as OECD, ICN, UNCTAD, BRICS, described a transition to new type agreements enabling collaborative enforcement, and invited foreign colleagues to take part in the events organized by FAS.
He concluded: “The European Commission is a partner with whom it is pleasant and interesting to work, because this partner is not only close but also very qualified”.