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Integrites has successfully represented the interests of the Gradoliya Oil Extraction Plant in two stages of a tax dispute against the Main Directorate of the State Tax Services in the Kirovohrad region, Ukraine.

Schoenherr has advised Oiltanking on the sale of a 91.1% stake in a liquid storage terminal at the Black Sea in Devnya, Varna, to Astra-Finance. 

Cobalt has advised Levinum on the establishment of the fine wine investment fund WineFortune.

In the Official Gazette of the RS no. 131/2022 of November 29, 2022, the Decision on Fees for Registration and Other Services Provided by the Business Registers Agency was published, which regulates the type, amount and method of payment of fees for the registration procedure and other services provided by the Business Registers Agency in keeping registers and records (“the Decision”).

Hungary's parliament passed a package of anti-corruption laws on 3 October 2022 as part of the commitments made by the government to the European Commission.

Velchev & Co has helped Premier Energy obtain a natural gas trading license in the Republic of Bulgaria.

Kocian Solc Balastik has advised J&T Banka on its acquisition of a majority share in Amista Investicni Spolecnost from Cinekin. Tovarek Horky and Partners reportedly advised Cinekin.

Former Moscow-based Baker McKenzie Partner Simon Morgan has joined the Banking & Finance department of Baker Turkish affiliate Esin Attorney Partnership.

Sorainen has advised the Luminor Bank on Siauliu Bankas’ EUR 85 million issuance of restricted senior preferred notes. TGS Baltic advised Siauliu Bankas.

Sorainen has advised the Luminor Bank on Siauliu Bankas’ EUR 85 million issuance of restricted senior preferred notes. TGS Baltic advised Siauliu Bankas.

Former BDO Legal-affiliated firm BDO Legal Latala i Wspolnicy has spun off to launch Forton Legal in Poland with Wieslaw Latala and Katarzyna Zajan-Aydogan as Partners.

Paksoy has advised the General Directorate of Mint and Stamp Printing House of the Ministry of Treasury and Finance of Turkey on a gold certificate issuance and listing on the Borsa Istanbul Commodity Market.

On December 1, 2022, SMM Legal announced that MOL's acquisition of Lotos Paliwa (reported by CEE Legal Matters on February 2, 2022) had closed. Subsequently, Baker McKenzie announced that Orlen Unipetrol's acquisition of Hungarian petrol stations from MOL (reported by CEE Legal Matters on February 1, 2022) had closed as well. 

An amendment to the Czech Significant Market Power Act (the "SMP Act"), which should harmonise Czech law with the EU directive on unfair business practices (the "Directive"), was recently signed by the President and will become effective as of 1 January 2023.

On 28 November 2022, the Council of the European Union gave its final approval to the Regulation on Foreign Subsidies distorting the Internal Market (FSR) following the adoption of the regulation by the European Parliament on 10 November 2022.

The Decree on the Determination of the Companies Subject to Independent Audit ["Decree"] No. 6434 published in the Official Gazette dated November 30, 2022 and numbered 32029, abolished the Decree on the Determination of the Companies Subject to Independent Audit No. 2018/11597 dated March 26, 2018, published in the Official Gazette dated May 26, 2018 and numbered 30432, and amended the thresholds of the criteria for determining the companies subject to independent audit while also amending the scope. These amendments aim to adapt the scope of independent audit to today's needs and to harmonize with the EU regulations.

Sorainen has provided pro bono advice to circular economy start-up FudLoop on the administrative law and compliance aspects of its daily operations. 

The Digital Services Act ("DSA") was published in the Official Journal of the European Union on 27 October 2022. This means that the Act, targeting numerous online services, will enter into force only 20 days later, on 16 November 2022.

What's new in Polish corporate law?

In the Official Gazette of the RS no. 131/2022 of November 29, 2022, the Decision on Fees for Registration and Other Services Provided by the Business Registers Agency was published, which regulates the type, amount and method of payment of fees for the registration procedure and other services provided by the Business Registers Agency in keeping registers and records (“the Decision”).

Cobalt has successfully represented security services company UAB Grifs before a first-instance court and the Lithuanian Court of Appeal in a dispute regarding the company's alleged failure to properly perform its obligations toward a client.

Kyriakides Georgopoulos has advised a Korkia-funded partnership – including local developers GH Energy and AA Sunshine – on the acquisition and development of a photovoltaic project pipeline in mainland Greece and Crete with a targeted total capacity of 1 gigawatt.

On December 1, 2022, SMM Legal announced that MOL's acquisition of Lotos Paliwa (reported by CEE Legal Matters on February 2, 2022) had closed. Subsequently, Baker McKenzie announced that Orlen Unipetrol's acquisition of Hungarian petrol stations from MOL (reported by CEE Legal Matters on February 1, 2022) had closed as well. 

SSW Pragmatic Solutions has advised Jeronimo Martins on a long-term power purchase agreement with GoldenPeaks Capital.

Former Constitutional Court judge and National Anti-Corruption Department Chief Prosecutor Daniel Morar has joined forces with the Albu Legal white-collar and corporate crime law firm, joining as a Senior Partner to form Albu Morar.

Act Randa Havel Legal has successfully represented Seznam.cz in a defamation dispute against Jan Hamacek regarding articles published on the topic of the former minister's planned trip to Moscow.

Dentons has successfully represented Mariano Ruiz and his husband Jakub Sanko, on a pro bono basis, before the Regional Court in Zilina in residential proceedings.

Former Aldertree Legal Partners Zoran Draskovic and Peter Hodal have joined Hillbridges as Partners together with their team.

With large energy and infrastructure projects under development in Bosnia and Herzegovina, local legal professionals are facing an uphill battle against the double standards in their industry, according to Sajic Law Firm Senior Partner Natasa Krejic.

Krynicki Dajczer Kaminski Herominski has represented MS-EKO before the National Appeal Chamber and the District Court in Warsaw as one of the contractors challenging a single-source procurement organized by the City of Warsaw.

Djingov Gouginski Kyutchukov & Velichkov has advised the administrators and senior secured lenders of Bulsatcom UH Holdco Limited on the sale of Bulsatcom to Viva Corporate Bulgaria. Kambourov & Partners and, reportedly, Squire Patton Boggs advised Viva Corporate Bulgaria.

White & Case has advised Sberbank CZ insolvency trustee Jirina Luzova on the CZK 41 billion sale of Sberbank CZ’s assets to Ceska Sporitelna. Skils advised the buyer.

Zepos & Yannopoulos has advised Westfort Capital Limited on the sale and financing restructuring of two hotels located in Rhodes and Crete.

Warsaw, 25 November 2022 – HR departments located outside our country, acting on behalf of their employer, are nowadays a fairly common practice, especially in multinational corporations. What does the liability of these individuals look like? The risk of penal liability for minor offences committed by employees operating outside Poland against employees operating in Poland is low, but it can happen. This occurs in cases where the perpetrator acted outside Poland, but the consequences belonging to the elements of a minor offence ensued in Poland.

A proposal for the modification of the Labour Code was filed to the Hungarian Parliament on 2 November 2022. The bill aims to ensure compliance with the EU Directives No. 2019/1158 on work-life balance for parents and carers and No. 2019/1152 on transparent and predictable working conditions.

On 4 October 2022, the Slovak parliament adopted an amendment to the Labour Code (the "Amendment") that enters into effect on 1 November 2022. The aim of the Amendment is mainly to implement two EU directives (No. 2019/1152 on transparent and predictable working conditions in the EU and No. 2019/1158 on work-life balance for parents and carers) and to respond to certain requirements resulting from application practice. In this article, we present an overview of the most important changes.

NKO Partners has advised the Dr. Max Group on its acquisition of the Sveti Sava pharmacy chain. Sole practitioners Biserka Crnoglavac and Mihajlo Micic reportedly advised the sellers.

Cobalt has advised the BaltCap Private Equity Fund III – acting through its subsidiary Adoro – on acquiring the assets of Dzives Abece.

White & Case has advised MidEuropa on its acquisition of a majority stake in Optegra. Eversheds Sutherland reportedly advised the seller.

Cobalt has successfully represented security services company UAB Grifs before a first-instance court and the Lithuanian Court of Appeal in a dispute regarding the company's alleged failure to properly perform its obligations toward a client.

History shows that the last bastion of freedom of speech, which guarantees these values, is the free press. But it’s no secret that since 2015, key constitutional values have been in crisis. Over the past three years, there have been repeated legal actions by state institutions, state-owned companies, businessmen and other lobbying organizations aimed at stifling the work of journalists, publishers and NGOs.

Former Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer Senior Associate Ricardo Gardini de Andrade has joined DLA Piper's Vienna office as a Partner to work in the firm's Litigation & Regulatory practice.

DLA Piper has advised DHL on the sale of a real estate portfolio including ten sites across Poland and five other European markets.

Hogan Lovells and PRK Partners have advised Polish-Czech RGW Express Group owner Hartmut Luetz on the sale of all shares in the company to French Groupe BBL.

Norton Rose Fulbright has advised Panattoni on the construction of an 87,300 square-meter built-to-suit facility for Tedi and subsequent sale of the asset to Tedi affiliate HH Immo. Dentons advised Tedi on the acquisition. 

Clifford Chance has advised Baltic Hub on the expansion and refinancing of its existing debt and the construction of the third deep-water sea container terminal in Gdansk.

Ellex and Wardynski & Partners, working with Thommessen, have advised Hampidjan on its acquisition of the Morenot Group from FSN Capital Partners. Norway's Haavind and Iceland's BBA Fjeldco advised FSN Capital.

Soltysinski Kawecki & Szlezak has advised Sea/ by Maritech company Maritech Holdings Limited on its acquisition of Setapp. Lukasz Lenartowicz reportedly advised the seller.

SSK&W has advised CofounderZone, business angels, and Ciech Ventures on their investment in coffee waste processing company Ecobean. Sole practitioner Marta Malasiewicz reportedly advised Ecobean.

Sorainen has advised Laba7 on a EUR 640,000 investment from the Coinvest Capital fund in cooperation with 44 members of the Lithuanian Business Angel Network LitBAN community. TGS Baltic advised Coinvest Capital.

Dentons Turkish affiliate Balcioglu Selcuk Ardiyok Keki Attorney Partnership has advised Sabanci Ventures on its investment in SCW.AI.

Sorainen has provided pro bono legal advice to the Entrepreneurs for Peace foundation on repairing all the explosion-damaged windows at the Ukrainian Society of the Deaf educational and manufacturing company in Chernihiv and preparing the building for the winter. 

On November 29, 2022, Eversheds Sutherland announced that the construction of the first Czech Ronald McDonald House by Nadacni Fond Dum Ronalda McDonalda (reported by CEE Legal Matters on April 21, 2021) had been finalized.

Sorainen has provided pro bono legal support to Filaret on drafting contracts for its cigarette butt waste upcycling program.

Fellner Wratzfeld & Partner has advised Soravia on its acquisition of Austrian hotel group Loisium Holding. 

Sorainen has provided pro bono legal advice to the Entrepreneurs for Peace foundation on repairing all the explosion-damaged windows at the Ukrainian Society of the Deaf educational and manufacturing company in Chernihiv and preparing the building for the winter. 

On November 15, 2022, CMS announced that J&T and Concens Investments’ sale of their Ostrava logistics assets to EQT Exeter (reported by CEE Legal Matters on January 19, 2022) had closed.

Law No. 7420 has made significant amendments related to tax legislation. These amendments cover: the introduction of a new tax treatment on capital reduction, a time extension for conversion to a currency-protected deposit account, an extension of the deadline for the tax benefits granted to individual participation investors (angel investors), income tax exemption for the portion of the meal costs paid in cash to employees that do not exceed TRY 51, and amendments to the tourism share rates.

Nestor Nestor Diculescu Kingston Petersen has successfully represented Romanian electricity distributor ENEL E-Distributie Banat in a tax dispute regarding tax depreciation for transferred fixed assets. 

The Tax Foundation issued its annual International Tax Competitiveness Index (ITCI) of 38 OECD countries. The Index seeks to measure the extent to which a country’s tax system adheres to two important aspects of tax policy: competitiveness and neutrality. The ranking weighs variables across five categories: corporate taxes, individual taxes, consumption taxes, property taxes, and international tax rules.

Senica & Partners has advised the Viessmann Group on its acquisition of a minority stake in Nomnio. Iuuri Legal advised the sellers.

JSK has advised the Sudop Group on its acquisition of an 80% stake in BizzTreat. Briza & Trubac advised BizzTreat founders Radovan Jirka and Jiri Tobolka as well as their spouses on the sale. 

On November 30, 2022, the BLS-CEE Law Firm announced that Wirtualna Polska’s acquisition of the Szallas Group from Portfolion Capital Partners and private individuals (reported by CEE Legal Matters on September 16, 2022) had closed.

Under Article 30 (5) (c) of Directive (EU) 2015/849 on the prevention of the use of the financial system for the purpose of money laundering or terrorist financing (AML Directive 2015), Member States are obliged to ensure that information on beneficial ownership is accessible by any person or organisation that can demonstrate a legitimate interest in obtaining it.

The War in Ukraine left no market sectors unaffected and, according to Ilyashev & Partners Managing Partner Mikhail Ilyashev, things were no different for lawyers.

Former Constitutional Court judge and National Anti-Corruption Department Chief Prosecutor Daniel Morar has joined forces with the Albu Legal white-collar and corporate crime law firm, joining as a Senior Partner to form Albu Morar.