On 22 March 2023, the European Commission published a proposal for a Directive on Green Claims. The proposed Directive aims to tackle false environmental claims by ensuring that consumers receive reliable, comparable and verifiable environmental information on products and services across the European Union. By laying down clear criteria on how companies should evidence environmental claims, along with mandating an EU labelling scheme and new enforcement procedures to secure compliance, the Directive on Green Claims is designed to enable better environmental decision-making by consumers and to reduce so called “green washing” (spurious environmentally friendly claims). However, it will likely still be some time before
Directive (EU) 2022/2464 on corporate sustainability reporting (the “CSRD”) was adopted at the end of 2022 and entered into force in January 2023, with a transposition deadline of 6 July 2024. The Czech Republic has opted for a phased-in transposition process in two stages corresponding to the implementation timeframe under the CSRD: This first phase, carried out as a minimum transposition, is already underway, namely in the context of the draft legislation on the consolidation of public budgets (the “Consolidation Package”). The Consolidation Package, among other legislative measures, introduces legislative provisions on sustainability reporting, to the extent corresponding to the first phase of reporting
The Banking, Finance and Capital Markets team in our Sofia office carried out a training session on the legal aspects of the use of sustainable finance instruments with a focus on green loans, social loans and sustainability-linked loans. The variety of ESG financing instruments allows for some flexibility in the choice of targets and KPIs; still ESG loans should follow the clearly established sustainable finance principles to avoid the risk of declassification or greenwashing claims. In addition to contributing to sustainability goals, these instruments have a wide range of advantages, including economic and reputational benefits. As they are becoming increasingly popular, we will continue monitoring the legal and regulatory
At the end of September, the long-awaited Regulation (EU) 2023/1804) on the deployment of alternative fuel infrastructure, and repealing Directive 2014/94/EU (“AFIR”) was published in the Official Journal of the European Union. Though the entry into force of AFIR is 13 April 2024, it is worth reviewing the key takeaways that the AFIR introduces as part of the EU’s Fit for 55 package. The AFIR sets binding national targets for the development of adequate EU alternative fuel infrastructure. The new regulation also establishes common technical specifications and requirements regarding the information to vehicle users for the provision of data and payment requirements. The AFIR includes detailed regulations regarding
The Romanian Competition Council (“RCC”) published today, 19 July 2023, a preliminary report following its study on the potential market barriers to producers accessing the local energy market from renewable energy sources (“RES”), given the applicable permitting process. Romanian Competition Council report on the permitting of new RES capacities In brief, the RCC concluded that the process of obtaining all permits and authorisations needed for the commissioning of new RES capacities is cumbersome and time-consuming, in spite of some simplification steps already taken, and may be discouraging to investors. Some of the main RCC findings and recommendations included the following: The
Kinstellar’s team in Romania has advised Danish developer Jantzen Renewables ApS on its transaction with OMV Petrom, the largest integrated energy company in Southeast Europe, for the purchase of the Helios 1 photovoltaic cluster in Romania. With the installed power estimated to be approximately 710 MW, the cluster will be one of Southeast Europe's most significant photovoltaic projects, powering around 280,000 Romanian households annually. Kinstellar advised on all matters pertaining to the transaction, including on the due-diligence and the negotiations with OMV Petrom. The team was led by Iustinian Captariu, Partner and Co-Head of the firm-wide Energy service line, and by Victor Constantinescu, Managing Partner
On 22 March 2023, the European Commission published a proposal for a Directive on Green Claims. The proposed Directive aims to tackle false environmental claims by ensuring that consumers receive reliable, comparable and verifiable environmental information on products and services across the European Union. By laying down clear criteria on how companies should evidence environmental claims, along with mandating an EU labelling scheme and new enforcement procedures to secure compliance, the Directive on Green Claims is designed to enable better environmental decision-making by consumers and to reduce so called “green washing” (spurious environmentally friendly claims). However, it will likely still be some time
Kinstellar supports professional growth by offering a broad range of career development opportunities for our team including Sector/Service line head or co-head roles. We provide growth opportunities to all of our talented lawyers with relevant experience and who have an outstanding track record. We believe in an inclusive recruitment process where we create an equitable application, interview and selection process. We are delighted to announce the appointments of the following sector and service line heads: Müfit Arapoğlu, a Partner in the Istanbul office, is the firm-wide Financial Institutions (non-transactional) Sector Co-Head and the firm-wide Head of Banking, Finance & Capital Markets (service line).
The Czech Republic has adopted legislation on reducing the environmental impact of selected plastic products (along with another act amending existing regulations). The respective acts introduce several types of measures – in particular a complete ban on certain single-use plastic items and restrictions on the production of other plastic products; or granting financial support to municipalities. The acts implement the EU’s Directive on single-use plastics – albeit more than one year late. The new laws enter into force on 1 October 2022; but the various obligations become effective as of 1 January 2023, or 1 January 2024, or 1 July 2024, respectively – or, in some cases, even later, such as in 2030. Please
Kinstellar is honoured and delighted to have contributed, as exclusive authors, to the Czech, Hungarian and Kazakhstan sections of the Clean Energy Tool launched by international law firm Simmons & Simmons. The Clean Energy Tool provides reliable, consistent and easy-to-manage information to support investments in clean energy projects around the world. It gives investors online access to important legal and regulatory information concerning renewable energy projects. The tool is constantly expanding and already covers 44 jurisdictions. Information is developed in collaboration with premiere local counsel selected by Simmons & Simmons from across Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America, Australia and the Middle East.
Vedran Kopilović, a Managing Associate at Kinstellar’s Zagreb office, participated in a virtual roundtable to discuss the latest in ESG developments with a focus on green financing—its regional and local drivers and roadblocks, its impact on non-financial reporting, and what it all means for the legal profession. The event took place on 12 July 2022 and was organised by CEE Legal Matters and moderated by CEE Legal Matters Managing Editor, Radu Cotarcea. Vedran highlighted that while the legal framework is solid on paper, “the reality of inflation, the war in Ukraine, and even the pandemic have created setbacks.” He went on to explain that, “a certain amount of sustainability-linked loans were offered by commercial
Bulgarian law requires that the directors of Bulgarian joint-stock companies perform their functions as directors by adhering to the “duty of care” standard of a prudent businessperson and always in the interest of the company and its shareholders. If a director fails to comply, they could be held liable for any damages caused to the company. The required duty of care standard is not easily reconciled with the current shift in corporate governance towards compliance with material ESG factors. While important for all stakeholders (e.g., employees, customers, vendors, and the communities where the company operates), ESG compliance could trigger additional financial costs and potentially be an obstacle to maximising profits.