Legislative changes, regulating electronic workflow standards

Among main legislative acts, regulating the use of electronic workflow in Russia, are:  

  • Federal Law No. 149-FZ of July 27, 2006 "On Information, Information Technologies and the Protection of Information" (as amended of July 27, 2010; April 6, July 21, 2011; July 28, 2012; April 5, June 7, July 2, December 28, 2013; May 5, July 21, November 24, December 31, 2014; June 29, July 13 2015;
  • The Federal Law No. 63-FZ of April 6, 2011 "On electronic signature" (last edition from 30.12.2015); 
  • Civil Code of the Russian Federation, which sets the rules for data exchange between the enterprises and the use of electronic digital signature for authentication information;  
  • Civil Procedure Code of the Russian Federation and Arbitral Procedural Code of the Russian Federation, which consider the possibility of digital documents provision as evidence in case of disputes between organizations.  

Electronic workflow legislation has significantly changed within 2015-2016.

Thus, since 1 January the list of companies, which are obligated to send the reports in electronic format to the tax authorities, has expanded. All companies with staff number more than 25 people are required to do it now. The sanctions for violations while submitting calculations for personal income tax are tightened. The sanctions are provided for late submission or inaccurate information. In case of the delay for more than 10 days, the bank account transactions and electronic funds transfer will be suspended.

According to the Federal Law No. 452-FZ of December 29, 2014 "On the amendments to Article 165 of Part 2 of the Tax Code of the Russian Federation" and the order of the Federal Tax Service №ММВ-7-15/427 of September 30, 2015, from 1 October 2015 verification of zero VAT rate application during export was simplified. Instead of paper copies of transportation, shipping and other documents the exporters can provide the registers of these documents in electronic form. Data from the registers are compared with the data of the Federal customs service of Russia. In case of any differences tax authorities can request the original documents. If the originals haven’t been provided within 20 days the zero rate is considered unconfirmed.

Till April 1, 2016 the universal transfer format for electronic workflow with tax authorities will be approved by the Federal Tax Service. It will include the invoice and accounting source document. The type form of the universal transfer format is reflected in the letter of the Federal Tax Service of October 21, 2013 №ММВ-20-3/96 “On absence of tax risks when applying the primary document drawn up on the basis of the invoice”. In 2016 the Federal Tax Service is also planning to approve other electronic formats of original documents. 

According to the experts, the possibility of providing to the tax authorities of all primary documents in electronic format (including documents of other authorities or international organizations) can significantly cut the costs of taxpayers on accounting records maintenance and increase the workforce productivity in this area. On the other hand, it will allow the tax authorities to reduce the desk audit periods and increase the quality control of tax payment.

Besides, in accordance with Federal Law No. 391-FZ of December 29, 2015 "On Amendments to Certain Legislative Acts of the Russian Federation", since 1 January 2016 an article 44.2 "Electronic notarial act" "Bases of the legislation of the Russian Federation about the notariate" came into force.

According to the article, the notary can make a notarial act by making a notarial document in electronic form. Individuals and legal entities will be able to assess the significance of this innovation in the nearest future. To get the certified electronic document you need personal qualified electronic signature.

Electronic signatures for individuals and legal entities are issued by the certification authorities.  In 2016 the requirements to certification authorities are significantly tightened. Now certification authority must have 7 mln RUB of net assets (1.5 mln RUB earlier).  The sum of liability insurance increased from 1.5 mln to minimum 30 mln and maximum 100 mln RUB. According to the experts, this can be a serious problem for small regional certification authorities. As a result, the market of certification authority services can be reduced by half.

According to the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications of the Russian Federation, 402 enterprises are registered in the Register of accredited certification authorities at the moment. You can get acquainted with their activities by subscribing on the Information and Analytical system Globas-i.

Problems of 223-FZ application in practice of procurements pursuing

At the moment a number of legal entities follow the federal law №223-FZ “On procurements of goods, works, services by certain legal entities” as of 18.07.2011 (as in force on 13.07.2015) in order to purchase goods, works and services for their own needs.

These entities include: state corporations, state companies, natural monopoly holders, state and municipal enterprises, companies with state share exceeding 50%, as well as enterprises operating regulated types of activity in the fields of power, gas, heat and water supply, water disposal, wastewater treatment, processing, utilization, treatment and burial of municipal solid waste. This category includes as well subsidiary companies of all the listed entities providing participation in equity exceeding in total 50%.

The analysis of state companies’ procurements by 223-FZ carried out by the Ministry of Economic Development of the Russian Federation showed the following statistics: the total sum amounted to 23,1 trillion RUB, number of placed procurements - 1,4 mln. The Top-5 largest players are (see Table 1): Rosneft, RZhD, Gazprom pererabotka Blagoveshchensk, Gazprom and Uralsevergaz. More than 50% of procurements are accounted for by these companies.  In the whole the increase of order volume amounted to 23% and the deal volume is close to 30% of GDP. According to the primary estimation of the Rosstat (Federal State Statistics Service) following the results of 2015, the GDP equals to 80,412 trillion RUB.

Table 1. Procurement volumes of the largest companies in 2015, Top-5
Name of the companyProcurement volume, trillion RUB
AO NK Rosneft 4,6
AO RZhD 3,4
OOO Gazprom pererabotka Blagoveshchensk 1,6
PAO Gazprom 1,5
NAO Uralsevergaz-nezavisimaya gazovaya kompaniya 1,3

Several negative factors were identified in the course of the 223-FZ application analysis carried out by the Ministry of Economic Development:

  • an oversize amount of electronic trading platforms (ETP) complicates accounting of deals, control over compliance with procurement requirements and doesn’t provide the sufficient level of their transparency; 
  • slackening of competition in the sphere of procurements – in particular, more than 95% of procurements were carried out on the non-competitive basis, 40% - with a single supplier;
  • procurements of the large customers for small and medium business (SME) are not attractive on the one hand, on the other – the SME is unable to provide the fulfillment of the large order;
  • application of procedures masking the single supplier procurements, due to lack of the procurement methods list and competitive requirements to carrying out of procurements in 223-FZ;
  • limited terms for applying to take part in the procurements in electronic format;
  • about quarter of tenders in the total amount of executed contracts are “arranged”;
  • less-than-full information in the contract register, discrepancy in procurement plans and their results – there is only information about the half of the executed contracts, the total sum is lowered;  
  • termination of tenders typical for certain industries in order to eliminate the unwanted parties,; 
  • the number of reasonable complaints within 223-FZ in 2015 equaled to about the half of the total amount of the filed complaints;


The identified trends lead to increase of cooperation risks and might adversely reflect on the customer and procurement parties. The business is suffering in any case. The Information and Analytical system Globas-i makes it possible to manage (reduce) these risks. Together with an aim to check the contractor’s reliability, the System gives an opportunity to study and analyze the contracts by 44(94)-FZ and procurements by 223-FZ and 44-FZ and to solve other business problems.