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  • 2022 July 1 15:28

    State Duma approves bill on increasing fines for violation of coal handling regulations

    Fines for stevedoring companies can be raised to RUB 600,000

    The State Duma of the Russian Federation has approved in the first reading the bill “On introduction of amendments into the Russian Federation Administrative Offence Code”. The bill foresees raising of fines for stevedoring companies violating coal handling regulations up to RUB 600,000.

    The document submitted by RF Government has been developed with the purpose to address the problem of growing negative impact on the environment and human health from the activities of companies engaged in handling of coal in ports (stevedoring companies). According to the explanatory note, this problem is especially acute in the Primorsky and Khabarovsk territories and in the Murmansk Region.

    Over the recent decade, coal handling in seaports has tripled 140 million tonnes per year. Although the federal executive authorities and stevedoring companies undertake large-scale measures aimed at minimization of the negative impact of coal handling activities in pursuance of the presidential instructions given in 2017, some stevedores fail to undertake the required measures properly and in full.

    In the Far East Federal District, there are 32 stevedoring companies involved in coal handling. Between 2016 and 2018, there were 467 rulings ordering administrative punishment.

    In 2019, the Pacific Department of RosPrirodNadzor conducted 94 inspections of stevedoring companies operating in the Primorsky Territory which resulted in 182 administrative cases.

    In the Southern Federal District, there are 9 stevedoring companies involved in coal handling. Between 2016 and 2018, there were 95 rulings ordering administrative punishment for a total of RUB 6.096 million which is unessential for large stevedores.

    As of today, administrative liability for failure to meet the regulators’ requirements is between RUB 300 and RUB 500 for natural bodies and between RUB 1,000 and RUB 2,000 for official bodies, or disqualification for up to three years. The fine for legal entities is between RUB 10,000 and RUB 20,000.

    According to the explanatory note, this size of penalty does not force natural resource users to undertake measures on rectifying violations discovered.

    Therefore, the bill envisages raising of the penalty from 1 September 2023 as follows: fines for legal entities – RUB 100,000 to RUB 200,000; in case of repeated violation revealed the same year – RUB 300,000 to RUB 600,000, or termination of activities for up to 90 days.

    Amendments to the bill can be submitted up to 28 July 2022.

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