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16 Wis. Int'l L.J. 529 (1997-1998)
Russia's Federal Law on Advertising: Permanent Solution or Provisional Stopgap

handle is hein.journals/wisint16 and id is 537 raw text is: RUSSIA'S FEDERAL LAW ON ADVERTISING:
PERMANENT SOLUTION
OR PROVISIONAL STOPGAP?
KEVIN TROST
I. INTRODUCTION
Many Western companies see now as the perfect time to plunge into
the vast consumer market of Russia. Seven years have passed since Russia
rejected an insular communist economy for at least a facsimile version of an
open market.' Russia's once skyrocketing inflation rate is edging
downward2, and Boris Yeltsin's successful heart bypass surgery has, for the
moment, prevented an executive leadership crisis Perhaps best of all for
potential merchandisers, the Russian government has finally promulgated
a comprehensive federal law to regulate commercial advertising throughout
Russia.4
Even with this recent progress, Russia's economy rerains
commercially underdeveloped and rife with numerous pitfalls awaiting the
naive businessperson.' Until recently, Russia was devoid of commercial
advertisements. Communist society had little need for advertisements
because the state monopolized the domestic production of consumer goods,
and the legal system explicitly prohibited private initiatives.' The closest
resemblances to advertisements in recent Soviet history were political
paintings, slogans, and billboards promoting the Soviet state, its people, or
its founders.7
Without an established commercial history, Russia struggles to
perfect a means to control its fledgling advertising industry The 1995
Federal Advertising Law is the government's latest regulation of the
industry and the first law to provide an overarching regulatory framework
for this field.9 This law supersedes a patchwork of separate and
incomprehensive laws, beginning with the initial post-coup Mass Media
'See Chrystia Freeland, Yelstin Backs Move to Fairer Economy, FIN. TIMES, Sept. 25, 1997,
at 24, available in LEXIS, Nexis Library, News File.
'See Danny Boyd, Russia Growing, MajorSays, SUNDAY OKLAHOMAN, May 17, 1)98, at
10, available in LEXIS, Nexis Library, News File.
I See Yeltsin Leaves Sanatorium for Country Residence, Reuters North American Wire,
December 4, 1996, available in LEXIS, Nexis Library, News File. •
See Vedomosti Fed. Sobr. RF Federal Advertising Law 1995 [hereinafter Federal
Advertising Law].
' See Jamey Gambrell, Introduction to Monroe E. Price, LAw, FORCE, AND THE RUSSIAN
MEDIA, 13 CARDOZO ARTS & ENT. L. J. 781, 790 (1995).
See DUSKO DODER, GORBACHEV: HERETIC IN THE KREMLIN 80 (1991).
7 See William E. Schmidt, West Sets Up Store and the Russians are Seduced, N.Y. TIMES,
Sept. 27, 1991, atA4.
'See Gambrell, supra note 5, at 791.
'See Federal Advertising Law, supra note 4, at art. 3.

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