On 13 November 2019, the Draft Law No 2178-10 “On Introducing Amendments to Some Laws of Ukraine Regarding the Circulation of Agricultural Land” (the “Draft Law”) passed in first reading by the Ukrainian Parliament. The Draft Law abrogate the moratorium on the sale and purchase of agricultural land in Ukraine being in force since 2001. The Draft Law prescribes that the land market will start to operate on 01 October 2020. 

The Draft Law’s key provisions are as follows:

  • the agricultural land could be acquired by the citizens of Ukraine, legal entities incorporated under the Laws of Ukraine, territorial communities and the state;
  • the legal entities, the final beneficiary of which are foreigners, apatride, legal entities incorporated under the laws of other countries; foreign countries, could not buy the agricultural land until the 01 January 2024;
  • the exception to the above-mentioned rule applies where these legal entities, incorporated no less than 3 years ago, are the agromanufacturers who use the land plots on the ground of lease or emphyteusis agreements made before 01 October 2020;
  • if the sale and purchase agreement will be made with violation of these provisions, it could be invalidated by the court;
  • a lessee, who can acquire the land according to the Law, has the preemptive right to purchase the leased land providing that he will pay the price under which the land is selling;
  • the joint area of agricultural land acquired by one citizen or legal entity including the associates could not overpass the thirty-five per cent of the agricultural land of joint territorial community, eight per cent of the agricultural land of the region, and zero point five per cent of agricultural land of Ukraine.

The Draft Law is only generally outlining the regulation of agricultural land market. There are also other Draft Laws (the Draft Law No 2194 and the Draft Law No 2195) passed in the first reading on 14 November 2019 which contain detailed provisions on the preparation for the start of the land market in Ukraine and its further operation. 

The provisions of the Draft Law most likely will be changed for its second reading in the Ukrainian Parliament. However, for now it is clear that the land market will finally start to operate at the nearest future.