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Commercial Real Estate Lease: Market and Law


On June 15, the AEB Real Estate Committee held a webinar titled "Commercial Real Estate Lease: Market and Law".

This was the Committee's second webinar on the topic, as last spring it held an event on the complexities of leases and the new crisis circumstances that have arisen, since renegotiation or termination of leases was a pressing issue for many companies across various sectors in 2022. It was essential to examine the legislative developments and the difficulties encountered in practice related to the rights of owners and tenants.

Now, after a year, time has come to return to the subject: real estate experts and companies whose businesses have been affected by the problem consider it useful today to review the changes that have occurred in the commercial real estate rental market over this period - both in general and in certain segments; to see how the restructuring of rental relationships has been caused by the departure of foreign companies, as well as to get an overview of the current judicial practice. The new discussion was moderated by Anton Alekseev, Counsel at EPAM Law Offices, Chairman of the Real Estate Committee.

Tatiana Divina, Senior Director, Head of Research and Analysis Department at Commonwealth Partnership, opened the event by giving an overview of the current situation on the office, warehouse and retail real estate markets, taking into account the changes of the last "year of turbulence" - together with the analysis of the factors, determining these changes, as well as with a forecast for the market situation in 2024.

After that, Stanislav Veselov, Counsel at ALRUD Law Firm, went over the features of the due diligence procedure and conclusion of lease agreements in the current environment, considering such aspects as counter-sanction regulations, eligibility of parallel negotiations, as well as the risks which might be related specifically to the premises. In conclusion, Stanislav spoke about current trends in signing lease agreements - in regards to the subject of the lease, its terms, rents and possible special conditions of the agreement.

Anastasia Pastushchik from Rödl & Partner gave an overview of the current judicial practice in the field of commercial real estate lease. The expert talked about the impact of bankruptcy moratorium on lease relations and considered specific court cases related to non-fulfillment of lease payment obligations, termination of commercial activities by the tenant.

What impact the departure of foreign companies from the Russian market over the last year has had on the restructuring of lease relations (and cases when such restructuring is necessary) was covered by Maryana Kabakova, Senior Associate at Denuo. The expert considered possible options for the transfer of premises from a foreign player to a new tenant, explained what basic steps should be taken, how to draw up a transfer of a contract, which conditions of the contract must be respected (or can be revised).

Olga Elliott, Senior Associate in the real estate practice of Nextons, focused on the features of warehouse leases. These include the specifics of the parties involved, the complexity and detailed structure of contracts, numerous technical aspects that must be taken into account and captured, as well as measures and limitations of liability.

Traditionally, at the end of the webinar the attendees had the opportunity to ask the speakers their questions.