August 12, 2021

Licensing, permitting and notification procedures in Uzbekistan

Table of Content

1. Introduction

2. The Legislation

3. Definitions

4. Competent authorities

5. Licensing

5.1  Types of the licenses and terms

5.2  Licensing of sub-activities

6. Approval documents

7. Procedure of licensing and obtaining approval documents

7.1   Step by step procedure

7.2   Refusal, reissue, change, suspension, cancellation, termination of the documents

8. Notification procedure

8.1  The procedure of sending a notification

8.2  Suspension, resumption, termination, prohibition of activities

9. Branches and representative offices of legal entities

10. Liability for violation of Law on licensing procedures

1.  Introduction

The legislation adopted the new Law No. LRU-701 dated 14.07.2021 “On licensing, permitting and notification procedures” (hereinafter referred as “the Law”), where all the relevant provisions are combined into one document.

Article 5 of the Law, states that the licensing and permitting procedures are necessary in cases if the implementation of certain types of activities or actions, by individuals or legal entities may entail harm to the life and health of citizens, damage to the rights and legitimate interests of individuals and legal entities, damage to public safety and (or) harm to the environment.

There are certain types of activities or actions, for the implementation of which it is necessary to license or obtain documents of permissive nature (hereinafter referred to as “Approval documents”) or notify the authorized bodies. The list of types of licensed activities, as well as their licensing, permitting, notification requirements and conditions can be studied in detail in the Law and also found on the Electronic Licensing Portal (hereinafter referred as the “License”).

2. The Legislation

In Uzbekistan, this sphere is regulated by the following legal acts:

  • The Law of the Republic of Uzbekistan No.LRU-701 dated 14.07.2021 “On licensing, permitting and notification procedures”;
  • The Decree of the President of Republic of Uzbekistan No.UP-6044 dated 24.08.2020 “On measures to radically improve licensing and permitting procedures”;
  • Code of Administrative Responsibility;
  • Criminal Code;
  • and others.

3.  Definitions

In accordance with significant changes in the legislation in the field of licensing, the law provided new terms, the meanings of which are explained below.

  • licensing, permitting, notification requirements and conditions – a set of requirements and conditions established by law, the fulfillment of which is mandatory for individuals and legal entities when carrying out licensed activities or performing activities (actions) on the basis of approval documents or in a notification procedures;
  • authorized bodies – specially authorized bodies and organizations that implements the licensing of certain types of activities, issue approval documents, as well as receive notifications through a special electronic system;
  • notification – information sent by the notifier to the authorized body for the start (termination)of the activity or actions in the notification procedures;
  • notifier – individual or legal entity, who address the notification to the authorized body and included in the register of notifications;
  • passport – the document in the field of licensing, permitting and notification procedures, that consists of the specific requirements and conditions, as well as the information connected with licensing process, the passage of permitting and notification procedures;
  • sub-activity of the licensed type of activity — the direction of the type of activity included in the licensed type of activity.

4. Competent authorities

The state regulation in the field of licensing, the passage of permitting and notification procedure in the territory of the Republic of Uzbekistan is carried out by the Cabinet of Ministers and licensing bodies, the list of which established in the Law. Moreover, the Decree of the President No.UP-6044 dated 24.08.2020 determines that the Public Services Agency (hereinafter referred as “the Agency”) is the authorized body for maintaining the “License” information system, where an application for a license, approval documents or notifications is submitted. Regardless to the control, the Agency also enjoys the right to control the state bodies and other organizations that carry out licensing procedures, issuing approval documents and notifications.

5. Licensing

5.1  Types of the licenses and terms

The types of activities, for which to obtain a license is necessary are specified in Appendix No.1 to the Law. There are two types of licenses – standard (simple) and individual. Standard (simple) licenses are the licenses, issued to an unlimited number of legal entities and individuals, if they meet the unified licensing conditions and requirements for the implementation of the relevant type of activity.

An individual licenses are the licenses issued to legal entities and individuals on the basis of special licensing requirements and conditions that grant licensees exclusive rights in the implementation of this type of activity. An individual licenses are limited in the number by the territory of operation, by the object of activity or on other grounds determined by the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Uzbekistan. As a rule, this type of license is issued on the basis of a competition (tender). For instance, this is indicated in the Resolution of the Cabinet of the Republic of Uzbekistan No. 592 of 20.12.2004 “On measures to ensure efficient use of radio spectrum in broadcasting”, namely regulation on the competitive distribution of radio frequencies and issue of individual licenses to carry out activities in the field of broadcasting (Annex to Decree №592 of 20.12.2004).

The license for each type of licensed activity is issued separately and can be issued for a sub-activity (sub-activities) of the licensed type of activity. The power of licenses is unlimited, except the licenses issued for a period of at least 5 years for the implementation of:

  • medical and pharmaceutical activities;
  • activities related to the trafficking of narcotic drugs, psychotropic substances and precursors;
  • activities related to the cultivation, import (export), processing, storage, sale (release), purchase and transportation of cannabis plants containing narcotic drugs for industrial purposes not related to the production or manufacture of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances;
  • activities related to the operation and provision of mobile radiotelephone (cellular) communication services and distribution networks of TV and radio broadcasts;
  • activities in the field of production, processing and sale of oil, gas (including compressed natural and liquefied petroleum gas) and gas condensate;
  • refining activities.

After the expiration of the term, the license can be extended at the request of applicant.

5.2 Licensing of sub-activities

The licensee can extend the activity that he or she has already implemented on the basis of the license with another sub-activity, for which a license is also required. For the implementation of sub-activity, the licensee must submit an application for a license that will allow carrying out a sub-activity. It should be mentioned that sub-activity must be carried out in the same area as the main activity of the licensee. The second stage of this procedure consists in informing the authorized body by the licensee, in accordance with the established licensing requirements and conditions that apply to the relevant sub-activity. The next stage consists in that the authorized body makes changes to the license previously obtained by the licensee regarding the corresponding sub-activity for which a license is required.

6.  Approval documents

Types of activities or actions for the implementation of which it is necessary to obtain approval document are indicated in Appendix No.2 to the Law. This document is issued for unlimited period, except for the cases provided for by their passports or by documents issued for performing a one-time action. If the document expires, it can be extended upon application. It should be noted that if the applicant has properly complied with the licensing requirements and conditions, then he has a priority right to extend the validity of the permit document, if the issuance of this document is carried out on a competitive (tender) basis. This advantage is applied if the offer of an applicant who has complied with the licensing requirements and conditions is equivalent to the optimal offer of another applicant participating in the competition (tender).

7. Procedure of licensing and obtaining approval documents

Licensing and permitting procedures are established in provisions that are attached to each type of activity. For example, a provision may include such items as:

  • the name of the license or permit document and by whom the license is issued;
  • a list of necessary documents for submitting an application;
  • procedure and terms of consideration of the application;
  • licensing or licensing requirements and conditions;
  • validity period and renewal procedure;
  • and other norms.

Moreover, the information that is necessary for applicant to obtain a license or approval documents and continue the activity is indicated in the passport of the license itself or approval documents.

7.1  Step by step procedure

  1. The application for the issuance of licenses or approval documents, as well as the documents attached to them is submitted by the applicant in the electronic system “License” or through the Unified Portal of Interactive Public Services (hereinafter – UPIPS) and is confirmed by an electronic digital signature. At the same time, the applicant must pay the state fee and (or) the necessary fees (for reviewing the application, issuing it), which are established in the passports and in the regulations on licensing certain types of activities and the procedure for passing licensing procedures.

The documents required for obtaining a license and approval document are:

  • For a legal entity – taxpayer identification number (TIN);
  • For an individual – the surname, first name, patronymic, data of the identity document of an individual, or the personal identification number of an individual (PINI);
  • The type (sub-activity) of activity (actions) that the applicant intends to carry out;
  • Other information confirming that the applicant fulfills the licensing or permitting requirements and conditions.
  1. The applicant automatically receives the corresponding document (mark) that confirms the registration of the application and the documents attached to it.
  2. Further, the application is examined by the authorized body that has to provide the issuance or refusal of a license or approval documents within 20 working days from the date of submission of application. Regardless to the application for licensing of certain types of activities (actions), the Cabinet of Ministers, taking into the consideration their specifics, may set a different period that is more than 20 days.
  3. No later than one day from the date of making a decision on issuing a license or approval document or on its refusal, the authorized body shall place its decision in the electronic system “License”. Further, within a period not exceeding one working hour from the moment of posting this decision, the applicant is notified of the decision made in electronic form by means of an electronic system. If the authorized body does not make a decision within the prescribed period, the applicant has the right to carry out his activity (action), while notifying the authorized body in electronic form via an electronic system or UPIPS.
  4. The license or approval documents are issued in electronic form with a unique QR code, with the exception of documents requiring registration on special paper forms in accordance with the international treaties of the Republic of Uzbekistan. Licenses and approval documents issued in electronic form can be printed out in paper form, which will have equal force.

7.2   Refusal, reissue, change, suspension, cancellation, termination of the documents

The grounds for refusal to issue a license or approval document are:

  • submission of documents by the applicant is not in full;
  • the presence of false or distorted information in the documents submitted by the license applicant;
  • non-compliance of the applicant with the licensing and permitting requirements and conditions.

Refusal to issue documents on other grounds, including on grounds of inexpediency of issuing documents, is not allowed. The applicant has the right to eliminate deficiencies within the period established by the authorized body (no more than 30 working days) and in other cases to submit a re-examination (elimination of the reasons for refusal by the applicant with a period of at least 10 working days from the date of notification and no more than 5 working days for re-examination by the authorized body).

The grounds for reissue are:

  • reformation of a business entity – a legal entity;
  • change of the surname, first name, patronymic or place of activity of a business entity-an individual;
  • merger of business entities – legal entities;
  • termination of the license for a subspecies of the licensed type of activity or a combination of several types;
  • change of the information specified in the approval documents.

Reissue and issue is carried out with a period of no more than 5 working days from the date of receiving the application by the authorized body. While the reissuance of a license or approval document, a fee of 50% of the amount paid for consideration of the applicant’s application for issuance of license or approval document is charged.

The grounds for changes are:

  • expansion of the type of activity carried out on the basis of a license by another sub-activity of the licensed type of activity;
  • the beginning of the implementation of activities by branches and representative offices;
  • changes in the address of the activity, if licensing and permitting requirements and conditions are established in relation to its location.

For changing a license, a state fee is charged, and for changing approval document, a fee is charged in the amount of 50% of the amount paid for issuing a license or approval documents.

The grounds for suspension are:

  • identification of violations of requirements and conditions;
  • failure to eliminate violations identified by the authorized body;
  • unauthorized application of the applicant, in case of temporary suspension of their activities (for up to 6 months).

The validity of the license or approval document is implemented by the authorized body for a period of up to 10 days, and by the court for a period of more than 10 days, but not more than 6 months. If the circumstances of the suspension of the license or permit document have been eliminated by the applicant, the authorized body or the court that made the decision to suspend the license shall renew the license within three days from the date of receipt of the certificate of elimination of such circumstances.

The grounds for cancellation are:

  • unauthorized application of the applicant;
  • liquidation of a legal entity;
  • termination of the certificate of state registration of an individual entrepreneur;
  • recognition of the incapacity of an individual;
  • non-payment of the state duty or fee within the established period;
  • failure to eliminate the obligations that led to the suspension of the license or permit document within the prescribed period;
  • systematic (two or more times within one year) or one-time gross violation of licensing and permitting requirements and conditions;
  • use of forged documents.

The information about the refusal, reissue, change, suspension, cancellation, termination of the documents is available on “License” system.

8. Notification procedure

The notification procedure differs from the process of obtaining a license or approval documents in that the permission of the authorized body is not required to start carrying out an activity or action. But meanwhile, an individual or legal entity assumes obligations to comply with the requirements and conditions of notification procedures. The types (sub-types) of activities or actions for which notification of the authorized body is required are specified in Appendix No. 3 to the Law. The requirements, conditions and documents necessary for sending a notification are indicated in the passports approved by the Cabinet of Ministers for each type of activity (actions) carried out in a notification manner.

8.1 The procedure of sending a notification

(1) The notifier or a person authorized to act on his behalf sends a notification to the authorized body, specifying the information and attaching documents through the “License” system or through the UPIPS by using an electronic digital signature. While sending a notification, the notifier confirms compliance with the requirements and conditions provided for in the passports. (2) In order to carry out activities (actions) that require notification, with the exception of notifications about the beginning of retail sale of alcoholic products and the sale of alcoholic products by public catering enterprises, the notifier is obliged to pay a fee in the amount of up to 50 of the basic calculation value (BRV). (3) If all the requirements and conditions are met, the sent notification is automatically accepted and, accordingly, as a result, the confirmation is sent to the notifier. Information about the notifiers to whom the confirmation is sent is automatically generated in the notification register.

It should be noted that the authorized body may not accept the notification only if:

  • Detection of false or unreliable information;
  • Non-payment of the fee;
  • No confirmation of compliance and fulfillment of requirements and conditions;
  • Suspension of activities (actions) by the authorized body;
  • A prohibition on the implementation of activities (actions) by the court.

8.2  Suspension, resumption, termination, prohibition of activities

The activity (actions) of the notifier that is carried out in the notification procedure may be suspended at the discretion of the authorized body or by the court. The authorized body may suspend the activity (actions) for a period not exceeding ten working days, in case of violations of the requirements and conditions, and within one working day sends the decision on suspension to the notifier through the “License” system. It should be mentioned that the notifier has the opportunity to resume the suspended activity (actions) by eliminating the shortcomings and by sending information about this to the authorized body with the attachment of supporting documents.

The activity (action) can also be terminated by the authorized body or by the court due to:

  • Identifying false or unreliable information;
  • Failure to eliminate deficiencies by the notifier within the period established by the authorized body;
  • Systematic (two or more times within one year) or one-time gross violation of the requirements and conditions.

Also, the authorized body may provide for the requirement of a prohibition on the implementation of activities (actions) for a period of up to three months or for a period determined by a court decision. Regardless to the notifier himself, he or she has the right to terminate his activities on his own initiative and notify the authorized body about this through the “License” system or the UPIPS.

Information about the suspension, resumption, termination, and prohibition of activities can be viewed in the “License” system.

9. Branches and representative offices of legal entities

Branches and representative offices established by legal entities do not require obtaining separate licenses and approval documents. But at the same time, in the licenses and approval documents that were previously received by legal entities, the addresses of branches and representative offices are indicated with changes made by the authorized bodies to these documents. For legal entities that already have branches or representative offices, it is necessary to notify the authorized body about this through the “License” system or the UPIPS.

10. Liability for violation of Law on licensing procedures

Individuals who have committed an offense in this area criminally and (or) administratively liable. In particular, under article 165, article 1763, article 2415 of the Code on Administrative responsibility of the Republic of Uzbekistan; article 190, article 1925 of the Criminal Code of the Republic of Uzbekistan. Moreover, in paragraph 5 of the Resolution of the Plenary Session of the Supreme court of the Republic of Uzbekistan No. 9 of 15.03.1996 “On judicial practice in cases of crimes and other offenses in the field of trade”, it is mentioned that the imposition of liability in the absence of only with regard to the license.

What is regard to legal entities (hereinafter referred to as the “Offender”) fines are imposed on them for the following offenses[1]:

  • Engaging in activities without a license, a permit document, and without notifying the authorized body;
  • Use of forged documents;
  • Providing false or unreliable information.

The decision on the imposition of a fine is made by the authorized body within five working days from the date of registration of the act on the detection of an offense. Within a month from the date of sending the decision on the imposition of a fine, the offender may voluntarily pay the amount of the fine provided for in this decision. If the offender voluntarily pays 70% of the amount of the fine from the total amount of the fine and applies to the authorized body for the purpose of issuing a license, approval document or sending notification, the offender is exempt from paying the remaining amount of the fine. The sizes of the fine are established in Appendix No.4 to the Law. It should be noted that, in case if offender will not pay a fine on a voluntary basis, the authorized body, within five working days, submits an application to the court for the recovery of the fine. The offender has the right to appeal against the decision to impose a fine.

It can be concluded that the new legislation has significantly simplified the licensing procedure, primarily by the fact that branches and representative offices of legal entities are not required to obtain separate licenses. Additionally, the law canceled the conclusion of a license agreement, and now a license and approval document can be issued in electronic format. The last new feature that should be noted is the introduction of an order and a mechanism for carrying out activities through notification. 

[1] The procedure for imposing a fine on legal entities comes into force on October 15, 2021.