A socially oriented non-financial development institution and a major organizer of nationwide and international conventions; exhibitions; and business, public, youth, sporting, and cultural events.

The Roscongress Foundation is a socially oriented non-financial development institution and a major organizer of nationwide and international conventions; exhibitions; and business, public, youth, sporting, and cultural events. It was established in pursuance of a decision by the President of the Russian Federation.

The Foundation was established in 2007 with the aim of facilitating the development of Russia’s economic potential, promoting its national interests, and strengthening the country’s image. One of the roles of the Foundation is to comprehensively evaluate, analyse, and cover issues on the Russian and global economic agendas. It also offers administrative services, provides promotional support for business projects and attracting investment, helps foster social entrepreneurship and charitable initiatives.

Each year, the Foundation’s events draw participants from 208 countries and territories, with more than 15,000 media representatives working on-site at Roscongress’ various venues. The Foundation benefits from analytical and professional expertise provided by 5,000 people working in Russia and abroad.

The Foundation works alongside various UN departments and other international organizations, and is building multi-format cooperation with 173 economic partners, including industrialists’ and entrepreneurs’ unions, financial, trade, and business associations from 78 countries worldwide, and 188 Russian public organizations, federal and legislative agencies, and federal subjects.

The Roscongress Foundation has Telegram channels in Russian t.me/Roscongress, English – t.me/RoscongressDirect, Spanish – t.me/RoscongressEsp and Arabic t.me/RosCongressArabic. Official website and Information and Analytical System of the Roscongress Foundation:roscongress.org.

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The Responsibility of Senior Executives in the New Reality
29 June 2022
10:00—11:30
KEY CONCLUSIONS
Russian law is developing dynamically and has great potential

Even though economic measures are above all important right now and quick business decisions need to be made, the law still rules all the same. Ultimately, the more legal work we do, the stronger the specialists become. If there are resources and time for this, it will be even easier for both business and the state to achieve synergy, which I actually believe is based on the success of preserving the economy and business in the country and minimizing the risks of all the participants in this race facing responsibility — Dmitry Timofeev, Vice President for Government Relations and Corporate Relations, PJSC "PIK-Specialized Homebuilder".

What is positive responsibility? I think that over these last few months it was the legal senior management of many companies who in many cases assumed responsibility for maintaining large workforces in our country. This is positive responsibility for business and for work teams [...] I would like to thank my colleagues for taking on this responsibility for the benefit of those whom we all think about – our citizens and workers. And for the benefit of shaping the overall climate related to how we continue to do business — Alexey Khersontsev, State Secretary – Deputy Minister of Economic Development of the Russian Federation.

Russian business is facing increased responsibility in legal matters due to the state’s support

After assessing the risks, most senior managers take a responsible approach to the issue and respond to our warnings. I’ll give you some statistics. Each year, more than two-thirds of the warnings issued are fulfilled. So, for 2020, this number is about 70%, which is a large figure. Moreover, the number of antimonopoly cases we open is decreasing every year [...] For example, in 2020, 868 cases involving violations of antimonopoly laws were opened. In 2021, it was already down to 795 cases. We will continue to develop the institution of prevention and actively apply it in our practice and [...] we will also motivate companies to behave correctly. We are proceeding from the presumption of business integrity and believe it as an important participant in our economy and a partner of the state — Nelly Galimkhanova, Deputy Head, Federal Antimonopoly Service of Russia.

Communication with government agencies is crucial. Previously, certain GR departments allowed themselves to engage in sluggish communication through official letters [...] In this situation, it was critical to make communication very fast and accurate [...] I can say that we have seen a lot of positive examples of interaction — the state has reacted differently to business and heard it. We have seen first-hand that many issues have been worked out very quickly — Oraz Durdyev, Acting President, Director of Legal Affairs and Corporate Relations, AB InBev Efes.

ISSUES
The impact of sanctions on legal decision-making in management

It’s a completely new reality for all of us. As of mid-2022, we have an economy that first survived the two difficult years of the pandemic, and then came under pressure from sanctions. It’s not an easy situation [...] The exit of a number of foreign companies from Russia was sometimes not an economic decision, and this has led to the structure of our markets changing. This has forced us to reconsider the methods and approaches used to assess competition. We are changing our approach to factors that we previously considered, for example, when conducting antimonopoly investigations. Today, when analysing the state of competition, it is impossible to objectively and accurately assess the feasibility of switching a consumer to foreign suppliers — Nelly Galimkhanova, Deputy Head, Federal Antimonopoly Service of Russia.

Several electric power companies, when unilateral restrictive measures were introduced by foreign states [...], found themselves in a situation where the boards of directors that predominantly consisted of citizens from foreign states, namely those that imposed the sanctions, could not adopt decisions on a number of transactions, while the company’s operating activities continued. Lots of generating companies perform a very important function – uninterrupted reliable energy supply to the country [...] What ends up happening is that the executive body – the CEO – is faced with a dilemma transactions need to be concluded, but the transactions are subject to approval by the board of directors — Zhanna Sedova, General Director, Enel Russia.

Legal conflicts are hindering business development

There are purely legal conflicts that arise. For example, the construction industry. On the one hand, we have a moratorium on including sites in the register of problematic ones. If you’re more than six months late in starting construction work, you end up in the register of problematic sites, and then the developer’s bankruptcy begins, the mechanism for supporting housing equity holders is activated. A moratorium was introduced on the inclusion of sites in this register. At the same time, financing began for a subsidy programme, and one of the covenants was to ensure the timeframe for the site’s commissioning. And from a legal standpoint, we had a long discussion. As both documents were prepared, we communicated a lot with the main ministry, trying to resolve the legal problem. Here it’s a question of the responsibility of the company’s management in terms of making a global decision — Dmitry Timofeev, Vice President for Government Relations and Corporate Relations, PJSC "PIK-Specialized Homebuilder".

Of course, the new reality creates uncertainty, and uncertainty creates anxiety [...] Judicial practice [in Russia] is developing in a democratic manner and is sympathetic to the interests of business. A recent ruling by the Supreme Court said a trustee in bankruptcy must file claims for recovery. Didn’t do it? That’s a violation. Losses. The criminal law article can be applied. And the Supreme Court explains not so unambiguously – that a violation has occurred because the likelihood of recovery must be taken into account. So, the trustee in bankruptcy is given the opportunity to assess the likelihood of recovery. Maybe there won’t be any need to go [to court], and in this case the person proves that there is no need to file because this would entail even more losses — Andrey Bushev, Judge, Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation.

SOLUTIONS
Strengthen communication between company employees and focus on maintaining teams

The role of communication is enormous right now. Rumours are destructive, so informational silence is [important] for the outside world, but communication with employees inside [companies] is crucial and needed by people. This is the basis of a stable society — Alexandra Nesterenko, President, Association «Non-profit Partnership «Association of Corporate Lawyers».

If you look at how processes are being restructured internally […], we understand that local management has a different responsibility and requires entirely different expertise in decision-making. Almost all processes need to be restructured. And this not only concerns the restructuring of supply chains, but above all human capital and retaining management because a business on wheels or on the rails is, of course, about people, not brands. In terms of the social aspect, I would like to emphasize communication to a greater extent. In the current situation we are in right now, communication is the key thing. If it is divided into subspecies inside, we can talk about communication to the market: these are the statements aimed at communities that the company makes. Communication within the company, specifically for employees, as well as communication with the state — Oraz Durdyev, Acting President, Director of Legal Affairs and Corporate Relations, AB InBev Efes.

Bolster cooperation between senior management, business, and government

There should be no excessive, unjustified pressure on business. Russian President Vladimir Putin spoke about this recently at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum. He stressed that a risk-based approach should be applied. This is now the main line of state policy, in particular antimonopoly policy. The Federal Antimonopoly Service has been on this for a long time. We have introduced the institution of a warning […] In the new reality, the principles of the work performed by the Russian FAS remain the same, while some detailed issues and enforcement mechanisms may be adjusted additionally, and adjusted together with business — Nelly Galimkhanova, Deputy Head, Federal Antimonopoly Service of Russia.

The government previously adopted a decision – a priority action plan – to ensure the development of the Russian economy in the face of pressure from external sanctions. There was a period when this plan was updated once a week [...] Now the plan includes 309 measures [...] and the entire regulatory framework for the implementation of 281 measures has been adopted. It’s a large cascade of dozens of laws, government decrees, and orders. And I am grateful to my colleagues — Alexey Khersontsev, State Secretary – Deputy Minister of Economic Development of the Russian Federation.

The material was prepared by the Russian news agency TASS