New rules for registration of representative offices meant well


Alexander Borodkin

Partner, Attorney-at-Law

Real Estate and Construction,
Trade and Commercial,
Transport and Infrastructure

By its decree No. 969-р dated 18 August 2021, which took legal effect since its adoption, the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine approved a new list of administrative services to be provided by administrative service centers ("ASC").

According to these changes, henceforth the ASCs shall accept documents for registration of foreign business entities' representative offices.

This seems to be a great solution as there will be even more places to apply quickly and easily for registration of foreign companies' representative offices.

But everything is not that easy. The aforementioned decree turns out to come as a big surprise both to employees of the Department of the Ministry of Economy who accept documents for registration of representative offices and to employees of all the ASCs, although the decree was published in the Government Courier on 1 September 2021.

Moreover, the decree itself states that, within one month after it took legal effect, all the ASCs shall be ready to provide the relevant services, prepare special cards and ensure the staff is trained.

Such one-month period has long expired but the ASCs still do not in the very least know what to do with the registration of representative offices.

To make matters worse, the Ministry of Economy declared, for reasons unknown to us and by referring to the decree, that it could no longer accept documents from foreign business entities for registration of their representative offices.

It is worth noting that the decree in no way prohibits the Ministry of Economy from accepting documents for registration of representative offices and no changes have been made to the regulations governing the registration of representative offices, at least neither we nor representatives of the Ministry of Economy know anything about it.

Thus, this time again foreign clients have been taken hostage by Ukrainian legislative amendments as all registrations of representative offices are put on hold.

Lawyers and their clients may only wait for the ASCs and the Ministry of Economy to clarify the situation. We have high hopes that the matter will be resolved in the nearest future and we will monitor the situation.

Authors: Alexander Borodkin, Ivanna Rodionova

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