Russia May Pass Law on Retail Trade Later This Month

Russia may pass a law on the retail trade this month if lawmakers and government officials complete the bill within the next 10 days, according to Arkady Dvorkovich, President Dmitry Medvedev’s top economic adviser.

The bill is likely to go through provided undisclosed “problems” with the draft are resolved, Dvorkovich told reporters in Moscow today. He said he wrote to Kremlin Chief of Staff Sergei Naryshkin with some suggestions on how to proceed.

The law aims to impose state regulation on the retail industry which would establish rules on relations between retailers and suppliers, and restrict retail chains’ expansion. Limits on expansion would hurt retailers the most, Vedomosti newspaper reported, citing Sergei Galitsky, chief executive officer of OAO Magnit, Russia’s second-largest food retailer.

Officials are working out how to determine whether a retailer’s position can be considered as dominant, Dvorkovich said today. Those with a dominant position in certain regions would be restricted from expanding there.

The bill has passed the first of three required readings. A second reading, scheduled for tomorrow, was put off, Dvorkovich said. Lawmakers will be able to pass the bill this year if it is finalized by Dec. 17, according to the adviser.

To contact the reporters on this story: Lyubov Pronina in Moscow at Maria Ermakova in Moscow at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Celeste Perri at

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