New fines totally amounting to around three million Russian rubles are to be paid by the professional organization of accountants "Chamber of Professional Accountants of the Republic of Kazakhstan" (Republic of Kazakhstan), the limited liability partnership "Eurasian Institute of Certified Public Accountants" (Republic of Kazakhstan), the public association "Institute of Professional Accountants and Auditors of Kyrgyzstan" (Kyrgyz Republic) and the CIPAEN institution (Kyrgyz Republic) to their respective countries' budgets.
Earlier, the EEC Board's Decision dated January 17, 2023 had already imposed on these companies fines for unfair competition in the transboundary market of public accountant certification services.
The new investigation was conducted in pursuance of competitor unlawful behavior applications filed to the Eurasian Economic Commission by a number of economic entities from Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan.
The case investigation ascertained that the said companies placed at www.cipaprogram.org website in their own certificate registry the information on certificates issued by other organizations, including the applicants. The website also informed that several certificates were postponed or canceled, and in order to activate/reissue them, the accession to one of these organizations was required.
Other unreliable information has been revealed as well. For example, several certificates had the year 1900 as their date of issue.
Commenting on the decision adopted by the Commission's Board, Bakhyt Sultanov, EEC Minister in charge of Competition and Antitrust Regulation, emphasized: "The companies have violated paragraph 2, Article 76 of the Treaty on the EAEU. The matter is unfair competition. Shall I mention that most applications on the antitrust behavior facts received by the EEC are associated exactly with this violation. For example, 15 of 26 applications the Commission considered in 2022 were related to unfair competition."