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The Warsaw Voice » Law » May 20, 2009
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May 20, 2009   
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French Buy KolTram
In a government auction April 23, French company Vossloh Cogifer bought KolTram, which produces rails and rail crossings, for zl.96 million-the first time a Polish state-owned company has been privatized in this way.

The auction held at the Treasury Ministry in Warsaw took just three minutes.

Law firm Gide Loyrette Nouel advised Vossloh Cogifer on the auction. Robert Jędrzejczyk, a partner in Gide Loyrette Nouel law firm and a specialist in energy and infrastructure law, was responsible for conducting the transaction.

Vossloh Cogifer SA, based in France, specializes in the design, development, production, and installation of fixed equipment such as switches and crossings, railway signaling, track laying, and renewal and maintenance for railways, metros, and tramways.

Salans Comes Top
Salans has been named the leading law firm in Central and Eastern Europe at the annual Chambers Europe Awards ceremony, held in London.

The awards reflect firms' achievements over the past 12 months, including outstanding work, strategic growth and client service. Winners are selected after independent research based on interviews with over 40,000 clients a year about their use of law firms globally. Shortlisted together with Allen & Overy, Baker & McKenzie, Clifford Chance, CMS Cameron McKenna, and White & Case, Salans received the Central and Eastern Europe Award for Excellence 2009.

r The Public Procurement Team at Salans Warsaw led by Aldona Kowalczyk advised the City of Warsaw in a public tender for the construction of the North Bridge. It advised the awarding body throughout the process, from invitation to tender through the legal part of tender documentation and answering numerous questions from contractors, right up to drawing up the agreement, which was signed April 21 by the city authorities and the winning bidder.

The North Bridge, a project costing nearly zl.1 billion, is a long-awaited investment in Warsaw and one of the largest municipal projects in Poland.

r In other developments at Salans, Krzysztof Sajewski April 16 joined Salans Warsaw as a partner and head of its German team.

Salans Warsaw's German team consists of 17 lawyers who are well acquainted with the language, business and commercial customs of German-speaking countries and have significant know-how in key areas of law for foreign investors in Poland.

"We wish to provide our clients with tailor-made services delivered by lawyers familiar with the special nature of work with German companies," said Sajewski. "The key issue is our intimate knowledge of the markets where our German clients operate. Consequently, we make a point of cooperating closely with our colleagues from the 14 German teams operating across Salans including the Berlin and Frankfurt offices."

Beata Gołębiewska-Chęciak

Work Time Limit for Truck Drivers
Truck and bus drivers who work at night (that is, at least four hours between midnight and 7 a.m.) will not be allowed to work more than 10 hours at a stretch, under a new piece of legislation regulating the working hours of drivers and bringing them in line with EU requirements.

Reflectors for Road Safety
In order to reduce the number of road accidents, pedestrians outside built-up areas will be required to wear fluorescent vests, armbands, stickers and other similar items, under proposed changes to the highway code that have been submitted to the lower house of parliament.

Deputies may make it compulsory for all pedestrians on roads outside built-up areas to wear reflectors after dark. At present, the requirement only applies to children under 15.

One Union, One Case
EU justice ministers have approved a proposal under which different EU countries will no longer conduct penal proceedings in the same case at the same time. "The point is to avoid penal proceedings against the same individual and concerning the same criminal act," said Polish justice minister Andrzej Czuma.

Every year, more than 40 penal proceedings concerning the same case are simultaneously opened in Poland and other EU countries. Poland wants the decision to apply to all penal proceedings, including tax offenses and misdemeanors.

Breaks Proposed for Small Businesses
The European Commission Feb. 26 proposed a complete exemption for small businesses from financial reporting obligations imposed by an EU directive of 1978. The move is intended to help companies deal with the ongoing economic crisis. The European Commission says the plan may lead to more than 6 billion euros in savings per year.

The proposal would benefit Polish small businesses with up to 10 employees, experts here say. Such businesses account for 95 percent of the country's total number of small and medium-sized enterprises, which is roughly 3.5 million.

The Commission's proposal still needs to be approved by individual member states and the European Parliament.

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