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Ukraine mulls cancelling ban on farmland sale

Staff Writer |
The Ukrainian Agriculture Ministry said it had prepared a draft law on agricultural reform, which envisaged cancellation of a ban on the sale of the country's farmland.

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"Maybe at some stages of our state's development, the moratorium on farmland sale was a necessity. But today, it violates not only the constitutional rights, but also basic and fundamental rights of citizens," said First Deputy Agriculture Minister Maksym Martyniuk.

Martyniuk said that the ban limited the rights of about 6.9 million of Ukraine's land owners to dispose of their property and blocks the flow of investment into the farming sector, according to a press release from the ministry.

Out of 32 million hectares of Ukraine's arable farmland, about 27 million hectares was owned by private land owners, he said.

The draft law on the agricultural reform would be submitted to the government after consultations with other ministries, Martyniuk said.

In 2001, Ukraine adopted a new land code, reviving a ban on farmland trade, which was first imposed in 1992. The moratorium will expire on Jan. 1, 2017.

After land privatization in 1996, the country's land owners have been working with farmers under lease agreements.

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