Legal Environment of Russia

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LEGAL ENVIRONMENT OF RUSSIA

Communism is often blamed for the problems that occur today in Russia, especially for the lack in the legislation system. However, the ancient history of Russia deeply rooted the way current business practices are done in Russia: religion and Tsarism are the foundation of the lack in legislation. The Orthodox Church did not attempt to make its own laws that completed with those of the state. Russia, therefore, did not see the growth of law as an educational pursuit that was seen in the West. The Tsars had total control over justice. The Russian citizens were not involved in the legislative process and therefore, did not give much credit to the laws, as they were not codified until 1833. The legislative process was arbitrary as it tended to protect the nobles and not normal citizens. Such practices ended at the time of the revolution in 1917, when Russia became a republic. The 70 years of communism contribute to reinforce the absence of law in Russia. The government improved the law regarding the protection of intellectual property and proprietary information over the past few years. Some laws have been determined to protect patents, brands or labels of origin, copyrights, software, etc. However, the law system for property rights is not enough developed and has to be improved to ensure a satisfactory protection and reach the level of the European legislation. Therefore, companies are still facing high risks. The risks are both external (i.e. viruses or hacking in order to get some confidential information about the company’s activities) and internal (i.e. thefts of trade secrets or competitive intelligence). Moreover, corruption can occur when registering the company’s rights to the authorities. As well, there is a great risk for counterfeit products even though the authorities are aiming to stop them....
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