YEREVAN, June 4. /ARKA/. The Armenian National Assembly on Wednesday passed in the second and final reading a package of amendments to the Law on the Securities Market and several related laws, which give the law enforcement agencies, the State Commission for the Protection of Economic Competition and the State Revenue Committee access to full information about the shares of companies and their owners.
Under the current law, information on shares and their owners can be obtained only in the framework of a criminal case involving a suspect or accused and solely by court order. At the same time, information about the founders of companies with limited liabilities and their shares has been open since 2001, and state bodies has had direct access to it since 2013.
According to Deputy Minister of Justice Rafik Grigoryan, law enforcement agencies need to have access to such information to investigate corruption crimes. In his words, it is important that tax authorities have information about shareholders, since the Tax Code provides for the term “affiliate”, one of the criteria of which is that the same person to some extent owns the shares of two companies, which determines the tax rate.
The State Commission for the Protection of Economic Competition needs this information to determine the dominant position of companies in the market and track down collusions.
The adopted amendments provide these bodies with access to complete information about the shares of companies, their owners, as well as to data on the list of their accounts, types and status of securities.