Following the order of the Prime Minister of the Russian Federation Mikhail Mishustin, issued in connection with the threat of the spread of coronavirus infection, the Federal Antimonopoly Service announced that it would temporarily suspend the appointment and conduct of inspections. The only exceptions will be unscheduled inspections related to the protection of the life and health of citizens, legislation in the field of public procurement and legislation in the area of state defence order.
Also, changes will be made to the work of the commissions for the consideration of cases of violation of antitrust laws and administrative offences. If possible, their work will be carried out remotely using video communication programs or temporarily delayed.
Furthermore, the deputy head of the FAS Russia, Mikhail Evraev, stated that the COVID-19 pandemic is a force majeure, which must be taken into account when considering complaints related to the government purchases and procurements of state-owned companies, cases of administrative offences, requests for inclusion in the RNP and inspections. He also drew attention to the fact that purchases aimed at preventing and eliminating the consequences of the spread of COVID-19 can be carried out from a single supplier, subject to a causal relationship between the purpose and subject of such a purchase.
Per the instructions of the head of the service, from March 23, 2020, the territorial bodies of the FAS Russia will intensify efforts to identify unreasonable price increases for socially significant products and goods. The regional administrations will carry out daily monitoring of prices for these products by regular checking of the prices in network stores.
Information on the appeals received, as well as on the activities implemented by the territorial administrations — inspections and meetings will be received weekly at the FAS Russia central office for the further submission to the Government of the Russian Federation.
The agency considers all requests for price increases within the time limits established by law. In case of detection of anti-competitive behaviour of market participants, the FAS Russia takes antimonopoly response measures.