The State Duma has passed at the second and third readings a bill which introduces a three-year ban on the planned inspection of small business enterprises that have not committed any violations over the previous three years. The bill implements an initiative tabled by President Vladimir Putin in his annual Address to the Federal Assembly last December. The ban will be in place from 1 January 2016 through 31 December 2018.
This measure is among the more easily executable – but powerful – initiatives to reduce red tape for SMEs. Our only concern is that the controlling agencies might opt to use the six months between now and the ban’s start date to step up the intensity of their inspections. Hence, the short-term effect could be the opposite of that which is intended. That said, we expect the ban to make a measurably positive contribution to small business owners’ sentiment and, respectively, to the momentum of business creation during 2016-18.