Bill banning civil servants from having foreign bank accounts could be passed in autumn

The Russian State Duma is likely to pass the hardest-hitting of the two bills on civil servants' foreign bank accounts and properties abroad, the daily Kommersant writes on Friday.

"The harshest of the two bills, submitted to the State Duma in late July and early August, is likely to be approved," Kremlin sources told the newspaper.

The bills were submitted to the lower house of parliament on July 26 and August 1, Kommersant writes.

The first one was initiated by Ilya Ponomaryov of the Just Russia faction, who was subsequently joined by Deputy Speaker Sergei Zheleznyak of the United Russia faction. And the second was proposed by Russian Popular Front representatives Vyacheslav Lysakov and Valery Trapeznikov, and supported by all of the Duma factions, Kommersant writes.

The first bill would require four categories of civil servants (lawmakers, governors, regional legislators, and also officials who hold Category A posts) to provide data on their foreign banks account and property abroad. It would also make them criminally liable for distorting or concealing this information.

The second bill would affect all those who are already obliged by law to declare their incomes, spending, foreign banks accounts and real estate, including municipal executives. Civil servants would not be allowed to have property abroad unless needed to perform their official duties, and foreign banks accounts unless spent on medical treatment or training abroad. The ban would apply to civil servants' spouses and underage children.

"Offenders would be fined 5 million to 10 million rubles or jailed for up to five years or disqualified for three years," Kommersant said.

The bill is likely to be passed in the autumn, the sources told Kommersant.

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