From 12 to 28 September 2018, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in association with the Ministry of Finance, the Financial and Capital Market Commission, the Procurement Monitoring Bureau, the Consumer Rights Protection Centre, and the State Revenues Service was presenting a series of lectures on “Effective implementation of the Sanctions Law in Latvia”.
The aim of the lectures was to inform understanding of sanctions among public administration and the general public through explaining the overall political context and role of sanctions in Latvia’s foreign policy and the need for ensuring compliance with international requirements in the matters of effective implementation of sanctions.
The series consisted of four lectures during which the responsible authorities introduced representatives from the public and private sector to the legal framework of international and national sanctions, looked into certain aspects of recent amendments to the Law On International Sanctions and National Sanctions of the Republic of Latvia (Sanctions Law), and provided information on standards and best practice for an effective understanding of, and compliance with sanctions in Latvia.
The opening address to launch the series was delivered by the State Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Andris Pelšs, who provided an insight into the importance of national sanctions for Latvia’s foreign policy, strengthening security and cooperation with international partners.
The first lecture, Sanctions: What are they and where to find them?, was presented by experts from the International Law Division of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, who outlined the history and nature of sanctions as well as providing information on the sanctions regimes and types currently functional worldwide.
On 21 September, the second lecture on Sanctions: Insight into amendments to the law, understanding of risks for the establishment of internal control systems and control over the movement of strategic goods offered general information on strategic goods control, sanctions risk management and setting up systems for internal control. Competent supervisory institutions – the Customer Rights Protection Centre and the State Revenues Service – familiarised the audience with functions that pursuant to the latest amendments to the Sanctions Law they would have to perform in relation to the supervision of sanction subjects and the duty to establish internal control systems in order to assess sanction risks.
On 25 September 2018, at the third lecture entitled Sanctions and public procurement, experts from the Ministry of Finance and the Procurement Monitoring Bureau explained to the audience the impact of sanctions on public procurement procedures and clarified obligations contained in the amendments to the Sanctions Law concerning both the subjects of the Public Procurement Law and supervisory authorities.
The fourth and final lecture in the series, Internal control systems and penalties for failure to assess the sanctions risk, held on 28 September 2018 and presented by experts from the Financial and Capital Market Commission, offered theoretical and practical information on the sanctions risk assessment and the setting up and functioning of an internal control system for sanctions risk management. Liability for violations of sanctions in the context of internal control system and sanctions risk management was also explained, as were the new requirements for sanction-related reporting to the Financial and Capital Market Commission.
The lectures brought together approximately 300 participants from law enforcement institutions, local authorities, line ministries, the financial, insurance, energy and transit sectors, law offices and education institutions.