Draft bill before Duma eases submission of NGO accounts

A draft bill amending Article 7 of the Law on Bookkeeping
Accounts was drafted by the Ministry of Economic Development. The present law
obliges NGOs to submit their accounts in the same way as a large company would.
This places the responsibility on the chief bookkeeper or whomever concluded
the contract for submitting the accounts. In fact in the case of more than
3,000 NGOs it is the director who prepares the accounts as they cannot pay a
bookkeeper’s fees. As a result many not-for-profit organisations do not
undertake any financial or economic activity.

The new law will allow heads of NGOs to submit their
accounts themselves. NGOs which had funds or assets of over 3 m. roubles in the
previous year will be excluded from this provision, as will organisations such
as colleges of advocates, lawyers’ chambers, legal consultants, housing and
house-building cooperatives, self-regulating organisations, and NGOs included
in the register of foreign agents. The law was approved at government level on
17 June.



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