LOSING FORCE STATUS ON THE SUPPLY OF GOODS IN THE REPUBLIC OF BELARUS, VALID FOR MORE THAN 20 YEARS
From June 6, 2021, the Resolution of the Cabinet of Ministers of 08.07.1996 No. 444, which approved the Regulation on the supply of goods in the Republic of Belarus, which had been in force for almost 25 years, was declared invalidated. This regulatory legal act was, along with the Civil Code, one of the key documents regulating intra-republican supplies in the Republic of Belarus. Some norms from the said Regulation are already so firmly rooted in the minds of suppliers and buyers (first of all, we are talking about suppliers’ liability for violation of the terms of delivery) that it will take a long time to get used to their absence.
So, what rules will no longer be from June 6, 2021:
1. Previously, the rule was in effect, according to which, if the contract did not specify the time within which the goods must be delivered, by default a three-month period from the date of the conclusion of the supply contract was in effect. Now this term is gone. The rule already established in judicial practice will be applied: in the absence of the delivery time agreed by the parties in the contract, this period will be determined according to the rule of Article 295 of the Civil Code, namely: if the supplier does not deliver the goods, then the buyer will have to submit to the supplier a written demand for delivery, which must be executed no later than 7 days from the date of its receipt.
2. Previously, there was a rule that legal entities and individual entrepreneurs were required to report to law enforcement agencies about all facts of embezzlement and abuse in excess of 50 minimum wages within 3 days, if such were discovered during the acceptance of goods. Now this rule is gone. Although, in fairness, it should be noted that even before that very few people knew about the existence of such a rule.
3. Perhaps the most noticeable change is the abolition of a number of legal penalties, which by default (unless otherwise specified in the contract) were applied to the relations of the parties under the supply contract, in particular:
The supplier’s liability for non-delivery or non-delivery of goods in the form of a forfeit (fine) in the amount of 10% of the value of the goods not delivered or not delivered on time is abolished. This type of forfeit was quite often used in practice, although many suppliers found out about its existence only in court. The supplier’s liability for the supply of goods out of range in the form of a forfeit (fine) in the amount of 10% of the cost of such goods delivered with a violation of the range is abolished. The supplier’s liability for the supply of incomplete or low-quality goods in the form of a forfeit (fine) in the amount of 25% of the cost of such goods is abolished.
4. The possibility of collecting a forfeit (fine) and losses incurred without offsetting the forfeit (fine) is lost in the event of delivery of inadequate quality or incomplete goods.
What do suppliers and buyers need to know?
Will the Supply Regulation apply after June 6, 2021? Will only apply to deliveries made before that date. That is, if the TTN or TN was issued and, accordingly, the goods were shipped earlier than this date, then the Regulation is applicable, if later, it will not apply. What can be done about this? If you want to apply any of the provisions of the Supply Regulation in the future (for example, the rules on the responsibility of the Supplier), you just need to duplicate the relevant provisions in your contract, and they will be applied based on your contract.
In addition, one should not forget that most often the levied penalty – a penalty for violating the terms of payment for the delivered goods – has always been absent in the Regulation on the supply of goods, and in the legislation as a whole. Therefore, if you want to collect such a penalty, you must specifically indicate this in your delivery contract.
If you have any questions regarding the new rules for the supply of goods in Belarus, please contact us. We will be happy to help you.