RUSSIAN ECONOMY IN trends and outlooks Technology infrastructure, which was developing in the form of special projects since 2006 - IT Parks in nine regions of the country, as well as four technology-innovative zones - has proved to be so ineffective that the management of those projects was transferred to the new agencies. Federal Agency for Management of Special Economic Zones (RusSEZ) was dissolved and its powers transferred to the Ministry of Economic Development. Herewith, the changes were quite unexpected, with no public justification, in fact carried out without prior arrangement. The situation with IT parks is similar - apparently, this program will be transferred from Ministry of Communications to the Ministry of Economic Development.1 In regard to Technical Innovation Zones it was noted that the general economic climate is so unfavorable for innovation, that the creation of "closed zones" is unable to change the conditions for innovation. In addition, zone residents have no tangible economic incentives to be engaged in technological innovation.
At the same time in the field of legal regulation and the formation of a new financial infrastructure to support small innovative businesses, especially those in the starting stage, there have been some changes that can be estimated positively.
One of the major changes is the adoption in August 2009 a new Federal law,2 under which the budgetary academic institutions, including the state academies of science, as well as universities, non-budgetary institutions, by the notification procedure can become the founders of business entities, created for commercialization of intellectual activity. Despite the existence of various risks and serious shortcomings, including gaps between the Act and the Budget and Tax codes, its adoption should contribute to the growth sector of small innovative enterprises.
As a contribution to the authorized capitals of small firms, agencies can transfer to them the rights for the objects of intellectual property. The adoption of this Law is successfully completed with new rules on limited liability companies (LLCs).3 According the entered into force on July 1, 2009 new edition of the Law on LLCs allowed to make contributions to the authorized capital in the form of property rights.
The measures provided by the Federal Law № 217-FZ, should create incentives for the development of small innovative businesses. However, meanwhile their practical implementation is complicated by inconsistency with a number of other existing regulations and established accounting practice of intellectual property (incomplete registration of intellectual property, registration of undervalued property).
1. Only the right to use to intellectual property can be transferred to the authorized capital, rather than the exclusive rights. Newly established companies cannot grant license rights for the results of intellectual activities to the third parties. This limits the ability of companies in business structuring, including the placement of production at existing production areas, belonging to third parties.4 This provision also allows research institutes and universities to establish multiple companies, which will have right to use the same results of intellectual activity.
Technology parks have replaced their profile / / Kommersant. No. 225. December 2, 2009, P. 13.
Federal Law No.217-FZ of August 2, 2009 "On Amendments to Certain Legislative Acts of Russia on a budget research and educational institutions, business entities working for practical application (implementation) of the results of intellectual activity".
The relevant changes were introduced by the Federal Law No.312-FZ of December 30, 2008 "On Amendments to the first part of the Civil Code of Russia and some legislative acts of Russia".
Innovations in Russia: legal challenges and legislative initiatives. Salans LLP. 2009.
Section Social Sphere 2. The difficulty is in identifying those objects of intellectual property, for which research institutes and universities have exclusive rights. Many developments were created through the budget funds and the allocation of rights in this case is not always clearly defined in contracts.
There arise some problems in the system RAS concerning the origin of intellectual property rights: they can be claimed by both, a scientific institution - the establishment of RAS, and by RAS itself.
3. According to the Law, the share of the institution in the authorized capital should be at least 25% in joint stock companies and at least one third in the LLC. This limits the development of partnership projects between research institutes and universities, where a number budget-funded agencies jointly establish a small business, because then the investor's share will be below 50%, which is unlikely to be acceptable to it.
The problem is also, where will be located and under what conditions will operate the created small firms. There is insufficient vacant space in the existing incubators and industrial parks, and the development of conditions for granting them a beneficial rent is only started. In this case, it should be noted that the government has reacted to this problem promptly, and is currently reviewing proposals of the RF Ministry of Education and Science to introduce benefits for the rent for small innovative enterprises, created by scientific and educational institutions. Under those rules in the first year there will be paid 40% of the market value of the rented premises, in the second year - 60% and in the third year - 80%.
In addition, the Ministry of Education and Science plans to hold two tenders to support the innovation infrastructure of the leading universities of Russia. In the framework of the first tender it is expected to implement a three-year program of infrastructure in 50-60 universities (business incubators, technology parks, etc.), legal protection of intellectual property, as well as advanced personnel training in the field of innovation. Herewith, among the selection criteria will be the number of established of small businesses in the university under Federal law No.
217-FZ. The second tender is aimed at supporting business entities through the provision of additional subsidies. Each business entity, established with the university under the Federal Law N. 217FZ, will be able to obtain on a competitive basis up to 100 million rubles per year from federal funds in case of 100% cost sharing.1 In general, the Ministry of Education and Science pays special attention to the Federal Law No. 217, and even going to assess the effectiveness of scientific and educational activities of budgetary institutions, created by small innovative firms.2 The Assistance Fund, also participates in the support of established scientific institutions and business entities through the program START for special financing of small businesses, created by the Federal Law N0. 217.
With this "attention" from the federal government, universities have begun actively to create small businesses. By the end of 2009, from 364 high schools, administered by the Federal Agency of Education, 44 have established 116 business entities with 881 workstations3. It takes only a few days to register a small business, so the real impact is yet to come - namely, how long the established small businesses will survive and how well they will work.
Ministry of Education is preparing two new tenders for high schools.
http://www.strf.ru/material.aspxd_no=26704&CatalogId=223&print=1 January 15, 2010.
217-FZ: the law is adopted, but is it working http://strf.ru/organization.aspxCatalogId=221&d_no=November 19, 2009.
Innovations in higher education: sluggish mode.
http://www.strf.ru/material.aspxd_no=26759&CatalogId=223&print=1 January 18, 2010.
RUSSIAN ECONOMY IN trends and outlooks Another positive development can be seen in the changes taking place throughout the year in the Russian Venture Company (RVC). It has gone from nearly a closure (because of the placement of free funds on deposit at the banks, what was classified by the General Prosecutor's Office as the gross violations and ineffective use of public funds1) to the development of a new performance strategy and establishment of Seed Stock.
RVC was also accused of inflating their expenses for administration in 2008. RUSNANO state corporation was blamed for the same failure in late 2009. According to the results of audits, the state corporation received 130 billion rubles, spent only 10 billion, of which 5 billion rubles of them were spent for its own activities.2 There are many ways to interpret what happened. On the one hand, it is to some extent a lack of understanding on the part of auditing authorities of the specifics of those structures, which cannot and should not spend all funding as soon as possible. On the other hand, it is the result of the slow unfolding of the work and indeed its low efficiency in terms of organization and management.
The RVC Head was replaced, and the Head brought a new concept of the fund operation, based on good understanding of the problems and deficiencies of the established innovation infrastructure, which primarily include the lack of commercial potential of projects and skilled teams, interest in the origin of intellectual property rights, the lack of qualitative technology and business expertise, strategic investors, as well as the lack of service organizations (consulting, legal and others).In order to partially compensate for the above failures, RVC made a strategic decision to establish the Investment Fund of Seed Stock. The Fund establishment in the form of limited liability company with capitalization of 2 billion rubles was made in late November 2009. Investment in projects on the part of the Fund will not exceed 75% of project cost. Herewith, RVC expects to receive a 25% share in the financed venture project. It is expected that within 2-3 years there will be funded 80 start-ups. A notable feature of the new fund organization is that the selection of projects and presentation thereof the RVC Investment Committee will be implemented through a system of the so-called venture partners, i.e. organizations which will seek and "package" the projects. To become a venture partner, one has to meet a number of not very difficult conditions, but if after a year of work the venture partners are not be able to submit projects for consideration, it will be deprived of that status. This approach is quite reasonable from two perspectives. First, the RVC takes off the burden of the direct search for projects, negotiations with their authors, and secondly, through the system of venture partners, potentially there could be built a system of intermediary companies, qualified teams, which are currently very few.
In general, this direction of innovation support can be effective in the long run, if it results in creation of a reserve for new products and technologies, serving as a basis for favorable conditions for overcoming the crisis and the further innovation development.
However, when speaking about the development of venture capital industry in general, it should be noted that in the absence of the stock market and large high-tech companies, an ex Prosecutor General's Office proposes to suspend the activities of RVC..
http://strf.ru/material.aspxd_no=17999&CatalogId=221&print=1 February 26, 2009.
Public corporations simply do not fit in the "shady' economy.
http://www.strf.ru/organization.aspxCatalogId=221&d_no=25258 November 12, 2009.
Igor Agamirzyan. Three priorities in development.
http://strf.ru/material.aspxd_no=23349&CatalogId=223&print=1 August 31, 2009.
Section Social Sphere cessive focus on the creation of numerous venture capital funds in financing the high-tech projects will not be efficient. According to the RADVI (Russian Association for Direct and Venture Investments), the majority of created in the country most venture capital funds (today there are 155 of them) are primarily the funds of direct investments. They invest in late stages of consumer market development, and investment in IPO (initial offering of shares in the market) is statistically close to zero.
4. 4. 7. Tax Incent ives for R&D Development Measures of tax incentives for innovation were actively introduced in 2007-2008, and in 2009 the government was paying close attention to this trend of innovation policy.
In 2009 an amendment was introduced, providing a possibility of recognition for certain single R&D expenditures, including effect less, and their writing-off by 1.5 index. The introduction of writing-off standard for R & D by a specified index is a progressive step at first glance. However, the effect of this measure may be lower than in developed countries. Overseas there is a progressive income tax rate, and reducing the tax base also reduces the tax rate.
However, this exemption is applied only to certain types of R&D, the list which is approved by a special government decree.1 It consists of 32 advanced technologies. At the same time, the list does not include research and development works aimed at developing technologies in traditional industries, what hinders them in innovative activity. In general, this measure could cause problems for tax administration and increase the risks of abuse on the part of taxpayers and tax authorities.
Another measure is the exemption of the grant recipients, including two government research funds - Russian Fund of Federal Property (RFFP) and Russian Humanitarian Science Foundation (RFSF), from income tax2. In the situation of sequester of the amount of grants for innovative projects this measure can be regarded as a partial compensation for losses. However, the absurdity of the situation lies in the fact that there is no term "grant" in the Minutes of Association of public research Funds, so they can not apply this regulation.
In general, tax incentives for innovation activity is developed and becomes more diverse.
However, a number of problems in tax regulation are more clearly revealed.
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