In 2017, the Baylor Black Sea Foundation, represented by NNDKP, facing the refusal of the Romanian fiscal bodies to authorize the import with the exemption from the payment of the value added tax and of the related custom duties applicable to the medicines necessary for the treatment of several serious conditions, including HIV/AIDS, anemia caused by chronical kidney diseases, certain types of cancer, to the issue to court in order to resolve this administrative-fiscal conflict that was jeopardizing the future of the entire donation program of the Foundation.
The Constanța Court of Appeals recently confirmed the correct decision of the Court annulling the decisions of the fiscal bodies refusing the import of medicines with the exemption from the payment of the value added tax, after the decision of the first level court had been previously reversed by the Court, pursuant to a final decision, whereby it had dismissed the complaint filed by the Foundation, who had challenged the refusal of the fiscal authorities to authorize the import of medicines under a regime allowing the exemption from the payment of custom duties.
“The court decided that we were allowed to benefit from the preferential conditions set forth under Romanian law for the import of critical necessity goods for persons with very limited financial means. The assistance provided by the NNDKP team made a significant difference. In this case, we are talking of a project initiated by the Baylor Black Sea Foundation in 2001, which was stopped in 2016, as a result of the refusal of the Galați General Regional Pubic Finance Department (“DGRFP Galați”) to authorize the import of certain medicines under a regime allowing the exemption from the payment of VAT and custom duties. This is a project that required a lot of effort and that ensured the donation of over 19 million dollars of medicines. The donations have been distributed to tens of medical institutions from the whole country. We made sure that medicines, such as antibiotics, antiviral drugs, treatments for cardiovascular conditions, which were vital to stopping the evolution of certain serious condition, reached the people who needed them. Approximately 50,000 persons benefited from our help. The medicines donated by Baylor were medicines that the hospitals either lacked, were in short supply or were inaccessible to patients because they were extremely expensive. When we realized that it would be impossible for us to continue the medicines donations project, we understood that we would no longer be able to provide for the benefit of the community all the services expected from us. Another big problem was that that we were no longer able to use all the means to which we had access to fight against infectious diseases and the associated complications until we obtained a favorable decision from the court in this respect. Once this situation is resolved, we hope that the projects in the field of health would be better received and supported by the authorities.” stated Ana-Maria Schweitzer, Executive Director of the Baylor Black Sea Foundation.
The NNDKP team that represented the client before the courts of administrative dispute resolution included Emil Bivolaru and Valeriu Mina, Partners in the Dispute Resolution Department, Alexandra Măruţoiu, Associate in the same department and Ancuţa Stroescu, Tax Manager and Simona Enescu, Senior Tax Manager.
“After two years of litigating before the Constanța courts, the Baylor Black Sea Foundation, represented by NNDKP, obtained the judicial validation of its efforts of importing medicines for patients in Romanian hospitals, under a regime allowing an exemption from the payment of the value added tax custom duties. It is a decision that makes us very happy and I want to congratulate the entire team for its continued effort on this project,” stated Valeriu Mina, NNDKP Partner.
The Baylor Black Sea Foundation:
The Baylor Black Sea Foundation has the statute of a public utility institution and has as scope of business the prevention, treatment and care provided to persons affected by infectious and chronical diseases, more specifically viral hepatitis, HIV infection and diabetes. Baylor carries out its activity at the premises of the Clinical Excellency Center in Constanța, runs three advice and rapid testing centers in the Dobrogea region and a mobile laboratory. Over time, Baylor tested for free over 75,000 persons, provided care to over 3,800 patients suffering from HIV and different types of hepatitis and provided support to the sanitary system through donations of medicines and professional training courses for specialists.
Nestor Nestor Diculescu Kingston Petersen is a promoter of business law in Romania, and is acknowledge, for almost 30 years, as a pioneer of the Romanian legal market. With offices in Bucharest, Cluj-Napoca, Timisoara and Brasov, NNDKP offers full-service and integrated legal and tax advice to companies from diverse industry sectors.
In 2019, NNDKP launched the Center for Excellence in Fiscal Disputes (NNDKP CELF), that offers integrated services to the company’s clients from the initial stage of a fiscal dispute (since the first control of the fiscal authority) until the litigation stage before the Romanian courts by combining the experience, technical skills and perspective of the tax consultants and lawyers specialized in tax disputes. The activity of CELF is organized so as to ensure that clients benefit from the first moment from complete professional services covering both a technical perspective and the perspective offered by a potential tax dispute, an approach possible only due to the involvement ab initio of a team of mixed professionals in each project.
NNDKP’s Dispute Resolution practice is independently recognized as a driving force in the litigation field, including by ranking first in prestigious international guides such as Chambers and Partners (European edition) starting with 2017 and The European Legal 500 starting with 2002. With 10 Partners who coordinate a team of 50 litigators in Bucharest and the three regional offices (Timișoara, Cluj-Napoca and Brașov), NNDKP has the resources to manage complex cases that may take several years of adjudication and at the same time, to come up with durable strategies to manage potential future risks.