Experts of the American Chamber of Commerce in Ukraine provided in a KW article their insights into the potential impact of the draft law on the land market in Ukraine and how it will change the business and investment climate.

Tatiana Levterova, Chamber Real Estate Committee expert, Legal Counsel, METRO Cash and Carry Ukraine, believes that the clear, precise and simple procedure of holding land auctions will minimize the risks of disputing the results of land auctions. “For creating and detailing such procedure it would be preferable to have a separate law regulating land auctions. Indeed, the procedure for selling land plots and rights for them at land auctions is described in detail in the Draft Law On Land Market No. 9001-D adopted by the Verkhovna Rada in the first reading on December 9, 2011. However, considering that this Draft Law No. 9001-D also regulates purchasing and selling agricultural lands, its adoption was constantly postponed.”

Among the positive aspects of the newly adopted bill is that it regulates the procedure for carrying out land auctions for selling land plots and the rights for them, establishes the parties entitled to be involved in land auctions, describes the preparation process of a lot for auction, provides requirements for financing of this process, regulates the signature of agreements in the result of land auctions and insures the publicity of information connected with holding land auctions etc.

“The Chamber believes that the Draft Law provisions will potentially help to increase transparency and strengthen ownership rights while decreasing the level of corruption in land regulation and improve the country`s overall competitiveness,” stated Jorge Zukoski, the President of the American Chamber of Commerce in Ukraine. “But there are still some very important issues that need to be resolved in order to make the procedures of holding land auctions easier to understand and transparent.”

The AMC said it is working to improve the adopted Draft Law and is advocating for some critical provisions to be improved to add additional clarity to the bill, including

• reducing a number of requirements regarding land auctions procedures;

• providing more information on the available land plot before the auction;

• prohibition to hold auctions with single participant;

• introducing penalties in case of violation of land auction procedures.

The Chamber said it would continue working on land legislation to ensure that a clear and transparent process is put in place, the article concludes.