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On 6 December 2014, Council Regulation (EU) No 1290/2014 entered into force. This regulation is the latest in a series of regulations regarding "sectoral sanctions" against Russia.
The "sectoral sanctions" against Russia were introduced on 1 August 2014 by Regulation 833/2014 (see our Legal Insight) and amended on 12 September 2014 by Regulation 960/2014 (see our Legal Insight). In contrast to these previous regulations, the newest regulation 1290/2014 does not impose additional sanctions, but rather aims to eliminate uncertainty as to the interpretation of existing ones. read more
So far, in Slovakia there has not been in force any regulation specifically addressing whistleblowing situations in which employees report wrongdoings, such as the commission of a crime which they learnt about in connection with the performance of their employment, work or function. Certain partial aspects related to whistleblowing have been regulated by the country's data protection, criminal and labour laws. read more
Croatia's sixth consecutive year of recession
The European Commission's autumn forecasts, published on 4 November 2014, projects weak economic growth for the rest of 2014 within both the EU and the Euro zone. This applies in particular for Croatia, which ranked at the bottom end of the list and for which negative growth of 0.7% in 2014 and only marginally positive growth of 0.2% in 2015 is forecast. Real GDP growth in Croatia is expected to pick up only gradually, reaching around 1.1% in 2016 on the back of an expected rebound in investment. read more...
 Full forecasts for Croatia available at http://ec.europa.eu/economy_finance/eu/forecasts/2014_autumn/hr_en.pdf
On 3 December 2014, Transparency International, the leading civil society organisation fighting corruption worldwide, released its 20th annual Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI). The index draws on surveys covering the views of business people, provides expert assessments, and ranks 175 countries by the perceived levels of corruption in their public sectors. The scale ranges from 0 (perceived to be highly corrupt) to 100 (perceived to be very clean). The CPI can be found under the following link. read more...
The Constitutional Court, with its recent decision of April 9th, 2014, numbered 2013/147 E. and 2014/75 K., cancelled Article 42/1(c) of the Decree Law on Protection of Trademarks No. 556 ("Decree Law"), upon request of İstanbul 4th Civil Court for Intellectual and Industrial Property Rights. Article 42/1(c) of the Decree Law, which is subject to the cancellation of the Constitutional Court, stipulated that a registered trademark should be declared null by the court in case it violates Article 14 of the Decree Law.
Article 14 of the Decree Law reads that if, the registered trademark has not been used within a period of five years without a justifiable reason, or if the use thereof has been suspended for an uninterrupted period of five years, the trademark should be declared null. Therefore, following the Constitutional Court's decision on cancellation of the relevant provision, the nonuse of a trademark will not lead to the nullity of a trademark and merely the cancellation of a trademark may be requested. In this article, the principle on compulsory use of trademark and the sanction based on the nonuse of a trademark will be examined. Then, the Constitutional Court's Decision will be evaluated by touching upon its reasons.
Transfer and Granting of Rights under Turkish Petroleum Law: Freedom of Contract versus Regulatory R
Especially after the drop in oil prices the companies that are in early stage of their investments have begun to get position aiming to turn into an advantageous investment and started to look to what extent the regulations allow them to transfer and grant their rights under Turkish Petroleum Law. This may be deemed also as an exit strategy for some from operational perspective as it parallels with the tendency around the world and has direct relation with oil prices.
Contracting the Petroleum Operations under Turkish Petroleum Law: Scope and Limits of Liability on P
As exception to liberty of contracting and unlike a number of other industries, Turkey's petroleum industry imposes certain obligations to petroleum right owners in contracting the conduct of the petroleum operations. At the first glance this seems that it aims to strengthen the management of hazards by enhancing the safety however the liability imposed to petroleum right owners in case of contracting the operations still remains unclear in terms of limitation.
Growing economy and competitive environment in Turkey has been leading companies to seek more profitable ways to conduct their business. Therefore companies have chosen to engage in subcontracts for the purpose of reducing their costs. Yet, to serve such purpose, at some point companies have started utilizing subcontracts to limit employees' entitlements through collusive contracts. Labor Law numbered 4857 (the "Labor Law") and Bylaw on Subcontractor dated September 27, 2008 (the "Bylaw") regulate which services or works may be subcontracted and strictly prohibit collusive contracts. According to Article 2/7 of the Labor Law, a collusive subcontract is considered null and void. Such nullity of subcontract automatically results in primary employers being redefined as main and sole employers of employees assigned to subcontracted work. Consequently, primary employers are solely responsible for employees' rights arising from subcontracted works and technically, primary employers would not have the option to recourse to subcontractors in order to claim any compensation due to their sole responsibility.
This article discusses the recent decisions of High Court of Appeals stating that subcontractors cannot evade liabilities against employees assigned to subcontracted works despite the regulation under Article 2/7 of the Labor Law.
Boundaries of the Turkish Competition Authority's Investigative Powers: Case Handlers vs. Personal Property
Dawn raids are a key form of investigative tool for the competition authorities. Officials may have broad powers to inspect corporate and residential premises, to seize and/or copy documents, e-mails and other records, and to interview employees. European Commission's ("Commission") investigative powers had undergone a dramatic change with Regulation 1/2003 back in 2004 and it seems that the Turkish Competition Authority ("Authority") intends to follow its European counterpart in terms of investigatory authority after almost a decade: The draft law ("Draft Law") to amend Law No. 4054 on the Protection of Competition ("Competition Law") which was brought before the Presidency of the Turkish Parliament in January 2014, if enacted, will grant additional extended investigative powers to the Authority including the power to inspect not just the undertakings', but also their employees' books, documents and data, preserved in "premises of any nature". Under Competition Law, without any doubt, the Authority currently does not have the right to examine the personal property of an undertaking's employees. This article aims to provide an insight on the Authority's current investigatory powers and practice regarding the collection of personal property and data during inspections, as well as the potential implications of the Draft Law on the right to private life in Turkey.
 Wils, W. (2013) Ten Years of Regulation 1/2003 - A retrospective, available at <http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2274013>
 For further information on the Draft Law, see Gurkaynak, G., On the Verge of Change: Turkish Competition Law (2014), available at <http://www.mondaq.com/x/290632/Antitrust+Competition/On+the+Verge+of+Change+Turkish+Competition+Law>
The acquisition of a minority shareholding may come under the Turkish Competition Authority's ("Authority") scrutiny in two ways, mainly: 1) it may result in de facto or de jure sole or joint control, depending on the rights possessed by the minority shareholders and/or shareholding structures and past voting patterns; and 2) it may not result in control but in cross-shareholding structures amongst competitors in a concentrated market which may raise questions about coordinated effects. This article discusses the circumstances under which the abovementioned consequences may arise under Turkish competition law with references to the relevant legislation and the most noteworthy cases in this regard.