MAIN PRIORITIES OF THE FAS ARE TO DEFER TO THE OPINION OF EXPERTS, BUSINESSES AND CITIZENS
The FAS and representatives of the Non-Governmental Organization of Small and Medium-sized Businesses "OPORA RUSSIA" discussed the relevant issues of concern to the business community
At issue was the question of the trade legislation, statutory ban on price parity in hotels, digital platforms and aggregators legislation, limiting the growth of tariffs and payments for SMEs, reducing the amount of cross-subsidization in the electric utility industry, as well as the position of the FAS related to the exercise of exclusive rights to the results of intellectual activity.
Maxim Shaskolsky, the head of the FAS Russia, highlighted that the antimonopoly service adhered to an assertive position on strict compliance with the ultimate indices of changes in citizens' charges for public utility services. He noted that to prevent an unjustified increase in tariffs for housing and communal services in the regions, the antimonopoly service ensures monitors their compliance. He also noted that through the work carried out, since July 1 the ultimate indices of changes in citizens' charges for public utility services did not exceed 3.3% on average in the country, although the Ministry of Economic Development predicted ceiling indices to be 4%.
According to Maxim Shaskolsky, the antimonopoly service will strictly prevent violations in setting regional tariffs. For example, last year, as part of the monitoring over tariff decisions, the antimonopoly service issued 96 remedies, considered 136 petitions for pre-judicial resolution of disputes and tariff disagreements and 61 cases of administrative offenses. This has resulted in 2.4 billion rubles of economically unjustified funds in the tariffs.
Sergey Puzyrevskiy, the State Secretary – Deputy head of the FAS Russia, said that the draft law of the FAS Russia on the application of antimonopoly law to intellectual property is included in the legislative drafting activities of the antimonopoly service for 2021 and soon may be submitted by the Government of the Russian Federation for consideration in the State Duma of the Russian Federation. The draft law aims to prevent monopolizing goods markets using intellectual activity results and suppressing monopolistic activities in digital markets.
The participants of the meeting also raised the issues of pricing and antimonopoly control. The head of the FAS highlighted that the antimonopoly service uses all available monitoring mechanisms in its work. In case of establishment of unjustified price increases or signs of violation of antimonopoly law, the FAS Russia will take actions on antimonopoly response: issue warnings, cautions, initiate antimonopoly cases.
In particular, concerning the sharp increase in prices for rolled products in April 2021, the FAS Russia initiated an antimonopoly case against several companies* on the grounds of concluding an anti-competitive agreement, as well as three cases on the grounds of fixing and maintaining monopolistically high prices for hot-rolled products**.
To achieve added, practical value for the business community, the parties agreed to continue discussing the most important issues on the available discussion platforms.
At the end of the meeting, Maxim Shaskolsky thanked his colleagues for their fruitful work and draped the medals of the Federal Antimonopoly Service entitled "30 years of antimonopoly bodies" over Alexander Kalinin, the President of OPORA RUSSIA, and Vladislav Korochkin, the First Vice-President of the organization.
*The case against Stalepromyshlennaya kompaniya JSC, Servisnyy Tsentr Metalloprokata LLC, company Stroytehcentr LLC, A Group LLC, URALMETALLSTROY LLC, Upravlenie komplektacii i snabzheniya LLC, Metallotorgovaya kompaniya KRASO LLC.
** In respect of PAO Severstal, PAO "MMK" and PAO "NLMK".