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EC recommends Romanian land sale to foreigners before 2014

European Commission has recommended that Romania and Bulgaria should allow EU citizens who are not established in the two countries to buy agricultural land before 2014, when the transition period detailed in the EU accession treaty will expire

February 2011 - From the Print Edition

The treaty established a grace period of seven years after accession, which allows the country to maintain existing restrictions on agricultural and forest land acquisition by individuals and companies from the EU and the European Economic Area.
Residents in Romania can buy land in the country under the same conditions that exist for Romanians.
The problem is that, according to the Constitution, companies have the right to own real estate regardless of their nationality or shareholders.
This loophole helped non-resident foreigners to hide behind a company in Romania and purchase land with no restrictions.
The EC believes it is important for Romania to exploit the remaining transitional period to stimulate the development of agriculture.
But Valeriu Tabara, Minister of Agriculture, stated that he would not raise the restriction, as recommended by the EU, as discussions on a new tax on uncultivated land, possibly 94 Euro per hectare, could lead to mass selling of land by subsistence farmers.



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