From 1 January 2011 the energy efficiency class will have to be marked on certain household electrical goods imported into Russia, and should be included in their labels and in the technical documentation accompanying such goods. The same requirement will apply to computers, other computer related electronic devices, and office equipment from 1 January 2012. On December 31, 2009 the Russian Government approved a list goods that will now be subject to energy efficiency regulations. According to Federal Law No. 261-FZ dated November 23, 2009 "On Saving Energy and Increasing Energy Efficiency and on Amendments to Certain Legislative Acts of the Russian Federation", the importer will be responsible for making sure that imported goods are in compliance with these requirements.

Importers failing to comply may be fined up to RUR 150,000 (approximately USD 5,000) with possible confiscation of the goods. The Russian Federal Service for Protection of Consumer Rights and Human Wellbeing ("Rospotrebnadzor") will be responsible for ensuring compliance with these new requirements.

Rospotrebnadzor is not involved in the customs clearance of goods, but in practice the Russian customs authorities may start checking the labels, markings and other documents on imported goods and reporting the results to Rospotrebnadzor to help unveil administrative violations.

To avoid potential delays during customs clearance and administrative penalties (including possible seizure of goods), importers are recommended to ensure that goods are marked and labeled with information on their energy efficiency class, and accompanied by technical documentation containing the proper energy efficiency information, either before shipment or before transferring the goods for customs clearance.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.