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Land acquisition limit extended PDF Print E-mail
21 December 2010

The European Commission has granted Hungary the extension of transitional period for the acquisition of agricultural land. „This decision is a significant success of the Hungarian agricultural diplomacy. The past half year has gone with reconciliations; I had several discussions with the representatives of the Commission and the ministers of the Member countries, and explained our arguments for the extension” – stressed the Hungarian minister of rural development, who received the good news during the meeting of the Council for Environmental Protection in Brussels.  “My colleagues and the experts have prepared an excellent documentation in which they underlined: without extension, serious disturbances would develop in the agricultural land market. Under the existing circumstances, the liberalisation of the land market would open wide space for speculative land acquisitions that would cause further decrease of competitiveness of the Hungarian agricultural producers.”

Following a request by Hungary on 10 September 2010, the Commission has granted a further three-year extension of its transitional period for the acquisition of agricultural land by non-resident EU citizens and all legal entities. The Commission also calls on Hungary to speed up its efforts to complete ongoing agricultural reform and, in particular, make progress on completing restitution programmes. 
Internal market and Services Commissioner, Michel Barnier said: “The decision taken today is based on a careful analysis of all the arguments. We grant Hungary the extension of the transitional period for three additional years, because we believe that this will provide the country with the opportunity to continue its preparatory work towards full liberalisation. This will then allow the Hungarian agricultural sector to benefit fully from the EU Internal market.”
The management of the Hungarian Ministry of Rural Development is aware of the fact that by the extension of the land acquisition moratorium, the regulation problems concerning agricultural land are not solved yet. Among short term aims of the ministry there are indicated the following: elaboration of a new act on agricultural land, the performing of a comprehensive land consolidation/development programme and other relevant measures.

 
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