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08 April 2021
Rus­sia enters new stage in the re­form of state re­gis­tra­tion of leg­al en­tit­ies
On 26 April 2021, a fed­er­al law* will come in­to force in Rus­sia, amend­ing Fed­er­al Law No. 129-FZ “On State Re­gis­tra­tion of Leg­al En­tit­ies and In­di­vidu­al En­tre­pren­eurs” (the “State Re­gis­tra­tion Law”)...
02 April 2021
New bill lim­its green­house gas emis­sions in an­oth­er step in the de­car­bon­isa­tion...
In Feb­ru­ary 2021, the Rus­si­an gov­ern­ment sub­mit­ted a bill* “On Lim­it­ing Green­house Gas Emis­sions” (the “Bill”) to the State Duma. The Bill was not­ably de­veloped in ful­fil­ment of Rus­sia’s ob­lig­a­tions...
01 April 2021
Di­git­al Mar­kets Act: a new and fair busi­ness frame­work for large plat­forms
The European Com­mis­sion has pub­lished the draft pro­pos­al for a new com­pet­i­tion law frame­work for large on­line plat­forms, called the Di­git­al Mar­kets Act (the “DMA”). The reas­on the Com­mis­sion pro­posed the DMA is that a small num­ber of large on­line plat­forms cap­ture the biggest share of over­all value gen­er­ated in Europe’s di­git­al eco­nomy, and these plat­forms have emerged by be­ne­fit­ting from sec­tor char­ac­ter­ist­ics such as strong net­work ef­fects, of­ten em­bed­ded in their own plat­form eco­sys­tems. These plat­forms rep­res­ent the key struc­tur­ing ele­ments in today’s di­git­al eco­nomy, in­ter­me­di­at­ing the ma­jor­ity of trans­ac­tions between end users and busi­ness users. A few large plat­forms in­creas­ingly act as gate­ways or gate­keep­ers between busi­ness users and end users, and en­joy a long-term, en­trenched po­s­i­tion, of­ten as a res­ult of the cre­ation of con­glom­er­ate eco­sys­tems around their core plat­form ser­vices, which re­in­forces ex­ist­ing entry bar­ri­ers.The DMA deals with those large on­line plat­forms act­ing as gate­keep­ers in di­git­al mar­kets. The DMA aims to en­sure that:these plat­forms be­have fairly on­line;in­nov­at­ors and tech­no­logy start-ups will have new op­por­tun­it­ies to com­pete and in­nov­ate in the on­line plat­form en­vir­on­ment without hav­ing to com­ply with un­fair terms and con­di­tions that lim­it their de­vel­op­ment;con­sumers will have more and bet­ter ser­vices to choose from, more op­por­tun­it­ies to switch their pro­vider if they so wish, dir­ect ac­cess to ser­vices, and fairer prices. Who are the gate­keep­ers? Gate­keep­ers are core plat­form ser­vices which meet the qual­it­at­ive and quant­it­at­ive cri­ter­ia set out in the DMA. Core plat­form ser­vices in­clude on­line in­ter­me­di­ation ser­vices, search en­gines, so­cial net­work­ing ser­vices, video-shar­ing plat­form ser­vices, num­ber-in­de­pend­ent in­ter­per­son­al com­mu­nic­a­tion ser­vices, op­er­at­ing sys­tems, cloud com­put­ing ser­vices, ad­vert­ising ser­vices in­clud­ing any ad­vert­ising net­works, ad­vert­ising ex­changes and any oth­er ad­vert­ising in­ter­me­di­ation ser­vices, provided by a pro­vider of any of the core plat­form ser­vices lis­ted above.A core plat­form ser­vice qual­i­fies as a gate­keep­er, if:it has a sig­ni­fic­ant im­pact on the in­tern­al mar­ket, which is pre­sumed if it achieves an an­nu­al EEA turnover equal to or above EUR 6.5 bil­lion in the three pre­ced­ing fin­an­cial years, or where the av­er­age mar­ket cap­it­al­isa­tion or the equi­val­ent fair mar­ket value of the un­der­tak­ing to which it be­longs amoun­ted to at least EUR 65 bil­lion in the pre­ced­ing fin­an­cial year, and it provides a core plat­form ser­vice in at least three Mem­ber States;it op­er­ates a core plat­form ser­vice which serves as an im­port­ant gate­way for busi­ness users to reach end users, which is pre­sumed if it has more than 45 mil­lion monthly act­ive end users es­tab­lished or loc­ated in the Uni­on and more than 10,000 yearly act­ive busi­ness users es­tab­lished in the EU in the pre­ced­ing fin­an­cial year;it en­joys a long-term, en­trenched po­s­i­tion in its op­er­a­tions or it is fore­see­able that it will en­joy such po­s­i­tion in the near fu­ture, which is pre­sumed if the thresholds in point b) were met in each of the three pre­ced­ing fin­an­cial years.   What are the gate­keep­ers’ main ob­lig­a­tions? Do’s and Don’ts     What kind of tools and powers do the Com­mis­sion and oth­er bod­ies have? The DMA grants powers and dif­fer­ent pro­ced­ur­al rights to the European Com­mis­sion and es­tab­lishes the Di­git­al Mar­kets Ad­vis­ory Com­mit­tee for is­su­ing opin­ions in is­sues re­lated to the DMA.The DMA gives the Com­mis­sion the fol­low­ing powers:to des­ig­nate core plat­form ser­vices that meet the DMA cri­ter­ia as gate­keep­ers;to re­view ad-hoc the status of gate­keep­ers on re­quest or on its own;to re­view at two-year in­ter­vals the status of gate­keep­ers;to spe­cify meas­ures to be taken by gate­keep­er to com­ply with the DMA;to sus­pend cer­tain gate­keep­er ob­lig­a­tions un­der the DMA at a gate­keep­er’s re­quest, if the gate­keep­er demon­strates that com­pli­ance with that spe­cif­ic ob­lig­a­tion would en­danger its eco­nom­ic vi­ab­il­ity;to ex­empt a gate­keep­er from cer­tain ob­lig­a­tions un­der the DMA on the grounds of pub­lic mor­al­ity, pub­lic health or pub­lic se­cur­ity;to ini­ti­ate mar­ket in­vest­ig­a­tions:lower-ro­manto ex­am­ine wheth­er a pro­vider of core plat­form ser­vices should be des­ig­nated as a gate­keep­er;in­to sys­tem­at­ic non-com­pli­ance by a gate­keep­er;to ex­am­ine wheth­er cer­tain ser­vices in the di­git­al sec­tor should be ad­ded to the list of core plat­form ser­vices and identi­fy prac­tices that might lim­it the con­test­abil­ity of core plat­form ser­vices or might be un­fair.The DMA grants in­vest­ig­at­ive, en­force­ment and mon­it­or­ing powers to the Com­mis­sion dur­ing its pro­ceed­ings, based on which the Com­mis­sion is en­titled to:re­quest in­form­a­tion from any un­der­tak­ings and from the gov­ern­ments and au­thor­it­ies of EU mem­ber states;ac­cess data bases and al­gorithms;in­ter­view any private per­son or leg­al en­tity to col­lect in­form­a­tion re­lat­ing to the sub­ject-mat­ter of an in­vest­ig­a­tion;con­duct on-site in­spec­tions at the premises of any un­der­tak­ings, in­clud­ing to­geth­er with aud­it­ors and ex­perts;or­der in­ter­im meas­ures against a gate­keep­er on the basis of a prima facie find­ing of an in­fringe­ment of ob­lig­a­tions un­der the DMA;mon­it­or the ef­fect­ive im­ple­ment­a­tion and com­pli­ance with the ob­lig­a­tions un­der the DMA.   What will the sanc­tions for non-com­pli­ance be? If the Com­mis­sion ad­opts a non-com­pli­ance de­cision in which it finds that a gate­keep­er does not com­ply with one or more ob­lig­a­tions un­der the DMA, the Com­mis­sion may fine a gate­keep­er.The max­im­um amount of a fine is 10% of the total world­wide an­nu­al turnover of the gate­keep­er in the case of a ma­ter­i­al breach of the ob­lig­a­tions un­der the DMA, and a max­im­um 1% in the case of a less ser­i­ous breach of ob­lig­a­tions un­der the DMA.The Com­mis­sion is also en­titled to or­der peri­od­ic pen­alty pay­ments of up to 5% of the av­er­age daily turnover in cer­tain cases defined in the DMA.In the case of sys­tem­at­ic breaches of the DMA ob­lig­a­tions by gate­keep­ers, ad­di­tion­al rem­ed­ies may be im­posed after a mar­ket in­vest­ig­a­tion. Such rem­ed­ies will need to be pro­por­tion­ate to the of­fence com­mit­ted. If ne­ces­sary and as a last re­sort, non-fin­an­cial rem­ed­ies can be im­posed. These can in­clude be­ha­vi­our­al and struc­tur­al rem­ed­ies, e.g. the di­vestit­ure of (parts of) a busi­ness.   What are the next steps? The European Par­lia­ment and Mem­ber States will dis­cuss the Com­mis­sion’s pro­pos­al ac­cord­ing to the or­din­ary le­gis­lat­ive pro­ced­ure, which will take at least 18 months. Once ad­op­ted, the Act will dir­ectly ap­ply across the EU and the core plat­form ser­vice pro­viders will have six months to pre­pare for the new leg­al re­gime.We will con­tinu­ously mon­it­or the status of the le­gis­lat­ive pro­cess and keep you up­dated on any changes to the draft text of the DMA.
31 March 2021
New rules of the game for book­maker gambling
The state reg­u­la­tion of the or­gan­isa­tion and con­duct of gambling and bet­ting on sports events will drastic­ally change in 2021 when Fed­er­al Law No. 493-FZ* comes in­to force in vari­ous stages. The key in­nov­a­tions...
29 March 2021
EDPS & EDPB re­lease joint opin­ion on the Data Gov­ernance Act
On 10 March 2021, the EDPB and the EDPS re­leased their joint opin­ion on the Data Gov­ernance Act (DGA), the European Com­mis­sion’s Pro­pos­al for a Reg­u­la­tion on European data gov­ernance. The DGA is an...
28 March 2021
CMS pub­lished Ex­pert Guide on sexu­al har­ass­ment in the work­place
CMS pub­lished Ex­pert Guide on sexu­al har­ass­ment in the work­place.2020 has seen an un­pre­ced­en­ted peri­od of work­place change com­poun­ded by sig­ni­fic­ant per­son­al un­cer­tainty. As work­places around the world...
26 March 2021
Fines in­creased for per­son­al data pro­tec­tion vi­ol­a­tions
On 27 March 2021, Fed­er­al Law No. 19-FZ dated 24 Feb­ru­ary 2021* comes in­to force, which sig­ni­fic­antly in­creases pen­al­ties for vi­ol­a­tion of rules ap­plic­able to per­son­al data pro­cessing in Rus­sia. This...
26 March 2021
Oil & Gas / Ship­ping – The Ever Giv­en
The Suez Canal opened in 1869. Along with the Panama Canal, it is one of the most im­port­ant mari­time “short­cuts” ever built. Today, the canal is 193km (120 miles) long and is one of the busiest wa­ter­ways...
24 March 2021
CMS Ex­pert Guide to European care homes
The world is get­ting older by the minute.Ac­cord­ing to the the 2021 Age­ing Re­port of the EU, the old-age de­pend­ency ra­tio in the EU’s demo­graph­ic old-age de­pend­ency ra­tio (i.e. the ra­tio between people...
Comparable
24 March 2021
CMS European M&A Study 2021
The CMS Cor­por­ate/M&A Group is pleased to launch the thir­teenth edi­tion of the European M&A Study
31 March 2021
CMS CEE Ger­man Desk: Waste man­age­ment in Cent­ral and East­ern Europe
As ever more waste is pro­duced, many coun­tries face new chal­lenges:What are the cur­rent de­vel­op­ments in the CEE coun­tries?How does waste man­age­ment dif­fer between EU and non-EU coun­tries?What prob­lem-solv­ing...
24 March 2021
EDPB Guidelines on Vir­tu­al Voice As­sist­ants
The European Data Pro­tec­tion Board (EDPB) pub­lished its draft Guidelines 02/2021 on Vir­tu­al Voice As­sist­ants (VVAs), which are soft­ware ser­vices that take voice as an in­put, identi­fy and ex­ecute a com­mand...