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Restricting the monopoly of IP rights as antitrust measure in Russia

Russian Federal Antitrust Services (FAS) develops fifth packet of amendments to Russian law on protection of competition. The reason of proposed amendments, according to FAS, is inability to apply current law standards to digital markets. The updated regulation should also cover internet and digital platforms or companies. This so called “fifth packet” includes amendments to Russian IP law.

Amendments deprive intellectual property objects of “immunity” from antitrust law. According to logic of FAS currently the provisions of antitrust law are applicable only to the world of physical objects. “What concerns technologies, linked to big data processing, they are not material objects, they are intellectual property objects, and therefore it is impossible to apply antitrust law to big data. Thus it is necessary to correctly define opportunity to apply antitrust law to intellectual property objects in order to prevent the monopolization of goods market,” – said deputy of FAS’s chief.

The analysis of proposed amendments is not so easy – just because there is even no formulated draft text, there is only discussions. It will be clear what is proposed only after the publication of draft. But the business community is not so positive in assessment of consequences resulting from proposed amendments. Some believes that FAS would have authority to “take away” patents; some believes fifth packet can damage digital economy.