31 Mar 2020 16:01

Federation Council approves bill allowing govt to declare emergency situation

MOSCOW. March 31 (Interfax) - The Federation Council has approved the bill, which expands government powers and includes the government's right to declare high alert and emergency situation throughout the territory of Russia.

The legislative initiative amends certain laws regarding the prevention and mitigation of emergency situations.

The government submitted the legislative initiative to the State Duma on March 26.

According to the explanatory note, the bill aims to regulate relations arising from the need for rapid response to the challenges presented by the 2019-nCOV spread.

The bill allows the government to declare high alert or an emergency situation throughout the Russian territory or in particular regions and to establish mandatory rules of conduct in the event of high alert or an emergency situation.

The government is also allowed to coordinate the unified state system of emergency prevention and mitigation, and the list of causes of emergency situations is augmented with "the spreading of a socially dangerous disease."

In addition, the bill allows restriction of wholesale and retail trade in medications listed by the government for the period of no more than 90 days in case of an emergency situation or "the threat of a socially dangerous disease."

Also, the government may regulate trade in critical medications and establish a special procedure for registration and trade in medications and medical products used in the case of war and emergency situations, as well as during the prevention of emergency situations and prevention and treatment of socially dangerous diseases.

Besides, the government is allowed making procurements from a sole supplier in 2020, and adjudging contract deadlines and prices if force majeure circumstances arise in the course of the fulfilment of the contract amid the coronavirus epidemic.