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Russia mulls whistleblower reward law

State Duma of the Russian Federation The Russian Duma is considering amendments to the antibribery law to bring the country’s legislation into compliance with international principles of anti-corruption. One proposed amendment is the regulation of whistleblowing activity.

The Ministry of Labor, following a presidential decree, developed the draft amendment called “On the protection of persons reporting on corruption offenses.” The amendment would entitle a whistleblower of graft to remuneration up to 15% of alleged damages to the state budget if the report is confirmed. The maximum remuneration would be capped at RUR 3 million (roughly $50,000).

The whistleblower award would cover reports by a public official, defined in the amendment as any person holding a legislative, executive, administrative or judicial office of the state, whether appointed or elected, whether permanent or temporary. A publc official would also include any other person who performs a public function, including for a public agency or public enterprise. The whistleblower law does not extend to reports by the personnel of non-state employers.

Russia does not have a history of whistleblower rewards or protections. But in addition to the move by the Duma for a federal law, at least one regional government is also considering a whistleblower scheme.

The Novosibirsk region is considering a local law for remuneration up to 10% (capped at RUR 1 million max or about $16,500)) for reporting on corruption offenses. The regional law provides legal protections for whistleblowers. It also covers both official and non-official employers.


Kristina Furlet serves as compliance specialist in a Russian subsidiary of a global provider of telecom services.

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