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Digest 25/1

We are glad to present you a special edition of the St. Petersburg International Legal Forum Digest dedicated to discussion sessions of the Forum 2015!

Prior to the event moderators of the Forum’s panels tell us what determines the urgent character of the issues discussed at the roundtables, what are the main issues to be brought up for consideration and who are distinguished speakers who are going to give speeches at the roundtables.

Please note that we have updated the Forum Agenda. On May 27 a number of business events will open the Forum: Kommersant Business breakfast “Legal Strategies during Turbulence”, two conferences “Legal Education: Alternative View” and “Eurasian Integration: One Year after Signing the Treaty on Eurasian Economic Union”, Presentation of Thai Law and other sessions. Alexander Zvyagintsev, Deputy Prosecutor General of the Russian Federation will report on "70 years of the Nuremberg Trials". Plenary session “Mission of Law in an Era of Change” will be broadcasted live in Russian and English for all Forum participants in conference halls , Press Centre and lounge zones.

You are also welcome to learn more about discussion sessions schedule on May 28 and 29.

You can subscribe to regular mailing list following the link.


«The recent 20 years have been among the most successful ones in terms of formation of the framework of international-legal prevention of financial crimes»

Natalya Shatikhina,
Managing Partner, CLC Law Firm

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Natalya Shatikhina, Managing Partner, CLC Law Firm, Moderator of 7.5. Global Recession and Prosecution for Financial Crimes

Global recession affects all economies without exception. One way or another, the increasing financial load on business causes a desire to optimize financial expenditures. This is often done by means of schemes of doubtful transparency and legality. At the same time states must sustain the growing burden of social expenditures. Tax collection, investment climate attractiveness and business support are among the major tasks for the financial system of the state. Thus, clarity and transparency of the mechanisms used in business come under pressure from opposite sides. The temptation to raise profitability through bating the requirements to financial and legal reporting is extremely high.

Different countries, however, feel the global recession in different ways, have come up to it with different states of economy and legal development and have different culture and traditions. It is natural for the business response to the general deterioration of the situation to be different in different states.

The recent 20 years have been among the most successful ones in terms of formation of the framework of international-legal prevention of financial crimes. The mutual integration of the market participants has also grown incredibly, which means the increased role of jurisdictional issues. Therefore, when taking certain steps every state is to match its actions to the international standards as well as the national legislation of individual states.

The roundtable discussion will address the following issues:

  • What is the current condition and dynamics of financial crimes?
  • Which steps are taken by the states to keep the balance between business interests and fiscal interests?
  • Who in the world and why has the most substantial impact on formation of compliance standards?
  • Is control over the funds origin necessary?
  • What should banks and financial institutions do to minimize the risks?
  • How can the state raise the investment attractiveness of its economy and at the same time observe the requirements of the international transparency standards?
  • Isn’t there too much control over financial flows?
  • States in financial crime prevention: partners or competitors.

The strive of Russian regulators to make the Russian investment market transparent by tightening control over transnational transactions on the one hand, and by amnesty of assets on the other hand, makes the topic of our panel even more important. It is not a secret that many business representatives are limited by the demands of different jurisdictions. It is worth noting that not only Russia faces these challenges, and for this reason we are interested to know the experience of the states, which have successfully implemented a clear compliance system in financial sector. The problems of compliance with finance statement standards challenge major banks on the territories of different states.

The discussion about the control over financial flows promises to be hot, though productive. We plan to involve representatives of the Central Bank of the RF, the Federal Financial Monitoring Service of the Russian Federation, the Ministry of Finance of Kazakhstan, leading world banks, Russian and foreign counsels.


«With the establishment of the market economy in Russia, many issues of trademark legal regulation were solved. However, law enforcement practice ensuring fair play between right owners and other market participants is still in progress»

Eugene Arievich,
Baker & McKenzie CIS

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Eugene Arievich, Partner, Baker & McKenzie CIS, moderator of 5.1. Trademarks: Shield or Sword? Current Issues of Legal Practice

The trademark is a key, the most accessible and the most powerful means of brand’s individualization. Moreover, a well-known trademark is an effective way of promotion, which minimizes expenses on advertisement. That is why it is very tempting to use all the advantages of a trademark, but sometimes this usage abuses a law. A border between legal and illegal behavior of market players is very subtle, as, on the one hand, a trademark is a legitimated monopoly, but on the other hand, this monopoly cannot be used to eliminate competition as such.

With the establishment of the market economy in Russia, many issues of trademark legal regulation were solved. However, law enforcement practice ensuring fair play between right owners and other market participants is still in progress, and our round table is aimed at helping this process.

We will discuss cases of illegal registration and use of trademarks, protection of well-known trademarks, and approaches to “soviet” trademarks protection.

The case of the Vacheron Constantin trademark and the decision of the Supreme Arbitration Court of the Russian Federation concerning this trademark are well-known. The establishment of the Intellectual Property Court ensured further development of concepts of illegal trademark registration and use. We plan to discuss whether the Russian law enforcement practice in this area corresponds to the approaches of other countries.

The well-known trademarks enjoy an extended protection, which surpasses the limits of homogeneous goods and services. It is not very clear though, how wide the limits of such protection should be. Can the actions of a well-known trademark owner aimed at its protecting from violation and registration of similar trademarks be illegal?

The Soviet Union collapsed almost 24 years ago, but the problems of the so-called soviet trademarks are still here. Very often, these trademarks are involved in market wars and results can be quite the opposite. Why can the “Alyonka” chocolate remain a trademark, while the “Druzhba” cheese spread cannot? Should both registration and use of a trademark be illegal so that the FAS would acknowledge these actions as an unfair competition? What is the approach of the IP Court? We would like both the state agency and the Court to express their points of view

The natural audience, which the panel is aimed for, comprises counsels, in-house lawyers of Russian and foreign companies, attorneys, judges, experts from Rospatent (the Russian Federal Service for Intellectual Property) and antitrust agencies, specialists in the area of intellectual rights.

The co-moderator of the session is Lyudmila Novoselova,, Chair of the Intellectual Property Court, Professor, renowned expert in IP.

The keynote speakers are:

Louise van Greunen, Director of the Building Respect for IP Division, WIPO;

Andrey Kashevarov, Deputy Director of the Federal Antitrust Service of the RF;

Chen Jinchuan, Judge of the Intellectual Rights Court (Beijing, China)

Frederick Mostert, Professor of the St Peter's College, Oxford, Ex-President of the International Trademark Association, Ex-Director of the IP Council of the Richemont. For his outstanding impact in the area of intellectual property Mr Mostert was appointed to the Hall of Fame established in 2006 for those who help to make intellectual property a key business concept of the 21st century.


«What a pension system actually is. Is it an unbearable financial charge on businesses and state budget or an important social stabilizer providing disabled people with means of sustenance?»

Yuriy Voronin,
Head, Staff of the Accounts Chamber of the Russian Federation

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Yuriy Voronin, Head, Staff of the Accounts Chamber of the Russian Federation, moderator of 7.9. Which Pension System is Urgent for Modern Russia?

The search of a pension system, which would be optimal for both economics and citizens, is in the focus of public attention. This topic becomes even more urgent in the context of financial and economic crisis. The whole world is literally involved into contentious debate on whether postindustrial societies need a pension system and what a pension system actually is. Is it an unbearable financial charge on businesses and state budget or an important social stabilizer providing disabled people with means of sustenance? At the “Which Pension System is Urgent for Modern Russia?” panel, considering international experience, we will try to give some recommendations on how to find the most optimal pension system, suitable for the contemporary social and economic situation in our country.

  • Lessons of foreign experience for the pension system of Russia;
  • Multi-level systems: searching for the balance between labour market, financial market and budgetary model;
  • Retirement age or length of pensionable service: which came first, the chicken or the egg?
  • Future of retirement savings in Russia: conflict between legal form and economic substance;
  • Pension equation and system of pension rights reservation in time: how to choose a perfect mechanism;
  • Early pension resulting from labour conditions and evaluation (special review) of work places: transformation options;
  • Insurance rate: regular tax or requited pension payment?
  • Pension payments to working pensioners: to be or not to be?

I would recommend to all the participants of the Forum to attend our panel, as the issues we are going to discuss concern each of us. All members of the society, lawyers included, are divided into the two categories, those who have already retired and those who will retire one day. For this reason, the topic of a pension system is important to everyone.

The following speakers will contribute to the discussion:

  • Hans-Horst Konkolewsky, Secretary General of the International Social Security Association;
  • Ernesto Murro, Minister of Labor and Social Affairs of Uruguay, President of the Ibero-American Social Security Organization;
  • Salim Muslimov, Minister of Labour and Social Protection of Azerbaijan;
  • Maria Borta, Chairman of the National Cash Desk of Social Insurance of Moldova;
  • Vladimir Chistiukhin, Deputy Chairman of the Central Bank of the Russian Federation;
  • Konstantin Ugryumov, Chairman of the Board of the National Association of Private Pension Funds.

«I started thinking whether it was possible to create a system of investment projects legal support or each project was absolutely unique»

Victoria Tsytrina,
Head of Legal Department, Etalon Group Company

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Victoria Tsytrina, Head of Legal Department, Etalon Group Company, moderator of 2.3. Management of Construction and Investment Projects

The panel discussion will address construction and investment projects management as viewed by a lawyer. Today the “development” term has gained popularity instead of just “building”, while construction of one or a few objects has given way to the development of large territories. Currently, the whole range of legal, tax, town-planning, historical and cultural issues need to be resolved to build a house. Moreover, during a long period of time a few stages of realization urges to be fulfilled and a lawyer should handle all the challenges in case of changes in legislation, economic or political situations.

The President of our company established a theory of the construction and investment projects management, which he has been using for more than 25 years. Therefore, I started thinking whether it was possible to create a system of investment projects legal support or each project was absolutely unique. That is why I suggest discussing this issue. Nowadays legal support of construction and investment projects comprises a complex interdisciplinary legal approach based on different industries. We will discuss encumbrances during construction, adequacy of regulatory system, strategies of how to use investments, and law making experience as a result of fulfilled projects.

We will invite developers and architectures, experts in tax and investment, representatives of regulatory authorities and the Ministry of Finance to be speakers at the panel. The keynote speaker will be a world famous architecture, who will tell us about realization of construction projects in different countries.


«According to the data of 2014, the package of international orders for the NPP construction based on Russian technologies exceeds $100 bln. For this reason, the topic of the NPP constructions is now more important than ever»

Andrey Popov,
Director for Legal and Corporate Affairs and Property-related Issues, Director of the Department for Legal and Corporate Affairs, State Atomic Energy Corporation "Rosatom"

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Andrey Popov, Director for Legal and Corporate Affairs and Property-related Issues, Director of the Department for Legal and Corporate Affairs, State Atomic Energy Corporation "Rosatom", moderator of 7.6. Main Issues of Nuclear New Build Projects

Drivers for the development of nuclear energy after Fukushima remain the same: the desire or the need for energy independence, the growing demand for electricity, low cost in comparison with renewable energy sources and price stability in comparison with fossil sources. In practice the consequence of these conditions is a serious quantitative growth of NPP construction, which is planned to be operational from 2017 to 2030. This means the construction of about 70 nuclear units at the present time.

As for the “Rosatom” State Corporation, I would like to notice that according to the data of 2014, the package of international orders for the NPP construction based on Russian technologies exceeds $100 bln. For this reason, the topic of the NPP constructions is now more important than ever.

One of the main issues, which primarily occurs when deciding on the construction of such a capital-intensive facility, as the NPP, it is a question about the source of funding. Sources and mechanisms of such funding range, including on the basis of the contract for construction: EPC, EPCM, BOO or multiple contracts. Along with this, each project is different and is associated with the solution of specific problems.

The NPP construction is a large international business. Interaction with foreign clients and necessity to work with foreign law in overseas jurisdictions is a routine for us. That is why our panel should be interesting for all the experts in international law. At the same time, as we will focus on large-scale technologically complex projects, the construction of which may take dozes of years, our discussion should attract our colleagues who deal with legal support of long-term projects.

The round table will feature the most experienced professionals who have succeeded in legal support of various NPP construction projects. For the major part, these are the members of the “Rosatom.” We have also invited an international expert from the Gowlings law firm who will express his point of view on NPP construction funding.


Coming in the next issue:

In the next special issue of the Digest on May 20, we will present you the interviews with moderators of the Forum’s sessions, as well as will keep you informed about the V SPBILF news.