Russia Backs Away from Foreign Property Ban

Russia Backs Away from Foreign Property Ban

Residential News » Europe Residential News Edition | By WPJ Staff | March 15, 2013 1:05 PM ET

The Russia Parliament reportedly won't include a ban on government officials owning foreign property.

A bill introduced several months ago would have made it illegal for state officials, civil servants and military personnel to own foreign assets, including real estate, bank accounts and securities. But a new version of the bill apparently removes real estate from the prohibition.

Moscow-Russia.jpg "One can quickly close a bank account without any problem, but it becomes complicated when real estate is concerned," deputy Duma speaker Sergey Zheleznyak told Izvestia daily. "It is difficult to quickly sell an apartment or a house. Besides, we would have to exclude the property in CIS countries from this ban."

The property issue has already created a "number of scandals," RT notes. Vladmir Pekhtin, the former head of the Duma ethics committee, resigned after opposition forces accused him of failing to disclose ownership of property in Florida.

Mr. Pekhtin said the apartment in the Flamingo South Beach complex in Miami Beach was actually owned by his son.

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