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Deputies pass bill to limit foreigners’ access to farmland

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Parliament adopted on June 3 the project of the Social Democrats by which foreign residents or companies would be able to buy agricultural land in Romania only under tighter conditions.

The Save Romania Union (USR) and National Liberal Party (PNL) claim that the bill "has constitutional issues," so they will challenge the law at the Constitutional Court.

Vasile Varga (PNL), secretary of the Legal Committee, stressed that the bill would violate the EU Accession Treaty, the Constitution, and several other laws.

The draft law comes as increasingly more agricultural land is owned or controlled by companies with foreign shareholders, Adevarul daily explains.

The adopted law changes the categories of people who have pre-emptive rights for buying land. The tenants who want to buy agricultural land must prove their residence or domicile in Romania for a period of 5 years before the purchase attempt - two years more than the provisions in force. If a person under 40 exercises the pre-emption right, that person must have been a resident in Romania for at least one year.

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