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Land reform is high on the governmental agenda


MyLand - 30/08/2012:


Land reform is among key points of the program of economic reforms of the President and Government of Ukraine, said Mr. Timchenko, Chairman of the State Agency of Land Resources in his speech at the first meeting of the Council of heads of public councils (ML: advisory bodies at ministries, committees and agencies) held by Chairman of the Council, Deputy Head of the Secretariat of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine Yuriy Avksentev.
"Land reform is called upon to use land resources which are currently not involved in economic circulation in order to raise agricultural sector in particular and the economy in general," - said Mr. Timchenko.
Mr. Timchenko also stressed that the main objectives of land reform are (a) creation of the State Land Cadastre as a modern fully automated electronic system, (b) lifting the moratorium on alienation of farmland and put it into economic circulation, (c) creation of the State Land Bank as a tool for development of small and medium agribusiness and (d) consolidation of fragmented farmland into large tracts attractive for investments and (e) separation of state and municipal land.
"Land reform has been going in Ukraine for more than 20 years, but due to political will of the current government this reform is entering the home stretch," said Mr. Timchenko. He also said that, in his opinion, in the field of land reform there was made more over the past two years than over the past two decades. In particular, there has been developed and adopted a number of long-awaited laws: on the state land cadastre, on separation of state and municipal land (ML: the law was actually adopted in 2004), on simplification of the establishment of boundaries of settlements, on land market adopted by the Parliament in the first reading (ML: law on land market is among draft laws never reaching the status of an actual full-fledged applicable laws. That might be unwise to claim any progress in respect of this law adoption. The draft itself is such as to make cheek of its drafters and promoters blush, so it is also unwise to claim any laurels for development and adoption thereof).
Mr. Timchenko also claimed that a significant achievement of his Agency was an introduction of electronic document circulation, and that put an end to lawlessness that existed until recently when crooks and corrupted officials performed various tricks with paper titles. "From now on all data is stored exclusively in electronic form, in one format and in a secure place," - he said, adding that due to electronic documents the quality of services for citizens increased, as well as revenues of the state budget. In the first half of 2012 there was issued almost half a million land titles or 48% more than it was issued in the same period in 2011; the registration of contracts for lease of land in the same period grew by over 80%.
According to Mr. Timchenko, the main task of the Agency is to put the automated electronic state land cadastre into operation on January 1, 2013. Soon a web portal will become functional where citizens will be able to reach maps of land parcels on-line.
Mr. Tichenko also said that adoption of the law on the land market will stop illegal use of agricultural land and speculation on the market. Farmers will get new opportunities for economic growth. This law ensures that rural dwellers will be able to dispose of their property, and farmland will be bought and owned by those who actually work on it.
Mr. Timchenko informed that today the Agency is assisted in completing land reform by the large group of foreign experts.


Source: Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine, 2012

Translation and comments: My Land, 2012

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