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Laws on Decentralization Facilitating Business Activities

Date of publication: 25 January 2016

Maksym Kopeychykov, Attorney at Law, Partner
Source: Business

Maksym Kopeychykov, Attorney, Partner at Ilyashev & Partners Law Firm has his concerns that certain sound ideas stipulated by laws on decentralization will be neutralized by their poor execution

It may happen that as early as this week the President will sign all three “decentralization” laws directly related to simplification of business processes. It goes not only about provision to local authorities, notaries and banks (upon opening their settlement account) of the right to render administrative services related to execution of different registration actions concerning legal enteritis and individual entrepreneurs, but also about registration of proprietary rights and their encumbrances.

For Ukrainian business it may mean considerable reduction of time and expenses required for execution of registration actions, including registration of sale and purchase of real estate.

Instead local authorities will obtain real powers on regulation of business environment in separate places or districts, as well as fall under certain liabilities for certain violations – providing they take a special decision on provision of such services.

It needs to be indicated that transfer of registration powers down to local authorities had happened in the past also. For example, liquidated was the separate structure – the State Register of Ukraine, the state registrars were referred directly to the Ministry of Justice and transferred to the executive committees, the notaries were allowed to carry out registration of proprietary rights, etc. The decentralization laws, so to speak, offer revolution instead of evolution.

Maksym Kopeychykov, Attorney, a Partner at Ilyashev & Partners Law Firm believes that Ukraine will unlikely secure top lines at the rating Doing Business as a result of changing the registration rules within less than five years after the preliminary (and generally successful) reform. Apart from this he is concerned by the fact that certain sound ideas stipulated by the laws will be neutralized by their poor execution.

For example, the procedure of transferring powers on execution of the state registration rules is prescribed in such a messy and intricate way that the term stipulated by the legislators may not suffice. Mr. Valeriy Vetrov, a member of the Civil collegium of the regulatory service and initiator of establishment in the town of Mykolaiv of the unified regulatory approval center considers that in order to understand the intricacies of powers and responsibilities three months are not enough considering for the fact that local officials, accustomed to receive instructions “from above”, have not heard about radical novelties yet.

The same is related to the “revolution” in the sphere of registration of proprietary rights which starts from January 01, 2016. Maksym Kopeychykov indicates that a corresponding law stipulates for certain procedures which previously used to be approved at the level of subordinate legislation. The notaries have received wider powers. It is unclear how this procedure may be started in the course of one month.

Thus, the situation which happened three years ago may happen again when at the beginning of 2012 new procedure of registration of proprietary rights was introduced but had been postponed for one year because of numerous protests of entrepreneurs.

As Maksym Kopeychykov summarized, from political point of view execution of the mentioned laws will make it possible to re-direct the vector of discontent of Ukrainian business from the central to local authorities and from practical point the said novelties will inevitably cause confusion and habitual difficulties to which Ukrainians are accustomed.