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Insights December 2023

Romania transposes the ECN+ Directive, further strengthening the Competition Council’s investigative powers

Facing EU infringement concerns, Romania has finally adopted an ordinance amending the Competition Law no. 21/1996 (the “Competition Law”), aimed at fully transposing into local law EU Directive 1/2019 to empower the competition authorities of the Member States to be more effective enforcers and to ensure the proper functioning of the internal market (the “ECN+ Directive”). This was carried out through Government Emergency Ordinance no. 108/2023 (“GEO 108/2023”), published in the Official Gazette on 6 December 2023. GEO 108/2023 goes further than merely transposing the provisions of the ECN+ Directive (as some of the principles in the directive had already been reflected under national law previously)

Insights December 2023

Gotta catch 'em all: Extending the scope of the Romanian FDI Screening Regime to EU investors and below-control acquisitions

A little over one year since Romania’s new foreign direct investment (“FDI”) screening regime (that we previously wrote about here and here) became fully operational, the Romanian government passed an emergency ordinance meant to further clarify particular aspects under the law (such as the scope of the screening regime, which is further extended) or to translate into law the lessons learnt or the authorities’ reading of the rules since applying the new FDI law.   The new changes to the FDI law were introduced by Government Emergency Ordinance no. 108/2023 on amending the supplementing Competition Law no. 21/1996, as well as other normative acts (the “FDI Amendment Law”, published in the Official Gazette

Insights December 2023

Update on the Advertising Regulatory Landscape in Ukraine

Amendments to Law of Ukraine on Advertising No. 270/96-ВР of 3 July 1996 have recently come into force. The amendments update obsolete regulations on advertising in Ukraine, thus ensuring advertising standards correspond to current technological developments. Click on one of the images below or click on the following links to read the overview in English or in Ukrainian. Download in English: Download in Ukrainian:

Insights November 2023

“Green Claims” in the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary

On 22 March 2023, the European Commission published a proposal for a Directive on Green Claims. The proposed Directive aims to tackle false environmental claims by ensuring that consumers receive reliable, comparable and verifiable environmental information on products and services across the European Union. By laying down clear criteria on how companies should evidence environmental claims, along with mandating an EU labelling scheme and new enforcement procedures to secure compliance, the Directive on Green Claims is designed to enable better environmental decision-making by consumers and to reduce so called “green washing” (spurious environmentally friendly claims). However, it will likely still be some time before

Insights November 2023

Slovakia: Subsidies for the construction of Renewable Energy Sources

Are you considering building your own Renewable Energy Source ("RES") in order to reduce your electricity costs, comply with internal ESG policies, or for any other reason? If so, you may find this overview of currently available subsidies to entrepreneurs in Slovakia for the construction of RES helpful. Currently, there are two opened calls for the submission of applications for state aid in the total amount of EUR 94,554,298. We provide an overview of key information on such aid below. Overview Call  Call for the submission of applications for funds from the Recovery and Resilience Facility to support the construction of new facilities for the production of electricity

Insights November 2023

Transposition of the CSRD in the Czech Republic

Directive (EU) 2022/2464 on corporate sustainability reporting (the “CSRD”) was adopted at the end of 2022 and entered into force in January 2023, with a transposition deadline of 6 July 2024. The Czech Republic has opted for a phased-in transposition process in two stages corresponding to the implementation timeframe under the CSRD: This first phase, carried out as a minimum transposition, is already underway, namely in the context of the draft legislation on the consolidation of public budgets (the “Consolidation Package”). The Consolidation Package, among other legislative measures, introduces legislative provisions on sustainability reporting, to the extent corresponding to the first phase of reporting

Insights November 2023

Renewable Energy – Simplified legislation in favour of national interest projects and state entities in Romania

On Friday 27 October 2023, GEO 91/2023, regarding certain measures related to the exercise of the state's public and private property rights, as well as the efficient administration of state properties and the amendment of some normative acts (“GEO 91/2023”), entered into force. Among others, by means of GEO 91/2023, long-criticised measures that substantially favour state entities and national interest projects have been enacted.  The main amendments brought by GEO 91/2023 with potential high impact on the renewable energy sector: It is now easier for state entities to develop projects located outside a buildable area for surfaces exceeding 50 ha and for national interest objectives specific

Insights October 2023

Cannabis use: CEE regulatory update

Significant changes in the regulation of cannabis use have occurred in some countries in Central and Eastern Europe since our last report. In addition to a number of countries gradually legalising the use of cannabis for medical purposes, increasing efforts by some countries are being seen to also legalise the use of cannabis for recreational use, as well as the use of other products containing various cannabinoids, most importantly cannabidiol (CBD). Click here to read a summary of recent changes related to the national regulation of this rapidly growing sector across Central and Eastern Europe. For any other details or information, please contact Tomáš Čihula, Partner. Contributors:

Insights October 2023

New Competition Regulations in Kosovo

Kosovo has over at the end of summer 2023 adopted a set of new regulations on competition law matters to underpin the Competition Act adopted in June 2022. Following up on our previous announcements regarding changes to competition rules in Kosovo, we provide below an overview of the latest changes. New merger control regulation The new Merger Control Regulation in Kosovo — Administrative Instruction on the Procedure for Submitting a Request to Clear a Review of a Concentration No. 02/2023 — sets out the procedure for submitting a notification of a concentration and defines the required content and document format, as well as the data that must be provided with the form.  An important change brought by

Insights October 2023

Ukrainian competition law reform to kick of in 2024

On 1 January 2024, Law of Ukraine No. 3295-IX (Law), aimed at strengthening the powers of the Antimonopoly Committee of Ukraine (AMC) and overhauling Ukrainian competition laws by aligning them more closely with European Union standards, will come into force. The most notable changes include an improved leniency policy, the introduction of a settlement procedure for cartels and abuse of dominance cases, clear deadlines for AMC investigations, and enhanced controls over concentrations, including updated filing thresholds. Click on one of the images below or click on the following links to read the overview in English or in Ukrainian. Download in English: Download in Ukrainian:

Insights October 2023

Legal aspects of the use of sustainable finance instruments in Bulgaria

The Banking, Finance and Capital Markets team in our Sofia office carried out a training session on the legal aspects of the use of sustainable finance instruments with a focus on green loans, social loans and sustainability-linked loans. The variety of ESG financing instruments allows for some flexibility in the choice of targets and KPIs; still ESG loans should follow the clearly established sustainable finance principles to avoid the risk of declassification or greenwashing claims. In addition to contributing to sustainability goals, these instruments have a wide range of advantages, including economic and reputational benefits. As they are becoming increasingly popular, we will continue monitoring the legal and regulatory

Insights October 2023

Joint study of the Romanian Competition Council and Romanian Energy Regulatory Authority identifies grid connection barriers and issues recommendations

The Romanian Competition Council (RCC) continues to focus on the energy markets, not only through investigations and merger control analysis, but also by carefully reviewing the markets through sector inquiries and studies. Given Romania’s declared interest in considerably bolstering its renewable energy capacities in the short term—which is also supported by EU funds and the Contracts for Difference (CfD) support scheme in the pipeline, renewables have recently been high on the RCC’s agenda. Roughly two months after publishing its preliminary conclusions following its study on permitting bottlenecks in the renewables sector (see our previous article here), the RCC has now teamed up with the Romanian Energy Regulatory