Opening the land market is a threat to Ukraine’s sovereignty

19:36 01.10.2019

Batkivshchyna Party leader Yulia Tymoshenko says the government’s proposed bill to open Ukraine’s land market carries a number of risks for both farmers and national security in general. Therefore, the issue can be discussed only after a national referendum is held on the relevant issue, because Ukrainians should express their views on such extremely important aspects for the country.

“Before we trade in what we will never have again – our agricultural land – we must first hold a national referendum on the people’s initiative. We should first ask people and then make the decision to sell land,” Yulia Tymoshenko said during the roundtable “The land market: existing threats to Ukraine and necessary safeguards.”

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According to the politician, one of the key threats in the proposed bill is that from now on, foreigners will in fact be given the right to buy agricultural land. The problem is that given the numerous cases of passports of other countries being issued to Ukrainians, there is a risk of losing part of Ukraine’s territories through a referendum on the secession of territories.

“People with dual citizenship will have the right to buy these lands. And then these people will have the right to hold a referendum. Therefore, the opening of the land market directly threatens the sovereignty of the country, because we’re talking about 72% of the territory of Ukraine,” she warned.

The head of the Batkivshchyna Party also said that the draft law gives legal entities established under Ukrainian but whose real owners may be foreigners the right to purchase land. She is also concerned that farmers will not be able to benefit from the right to purchase land because they do not have sufficient financial resources.

The politician believes that the process of adopting the bill on the sale of land must be stopped. Second, a comprehensive audit of agricultural land in Ukraine must be conducted. Third, state support must be provided for the proper development of the country’s agricultural sector through the development of farms and small and medium-sized agricultural production.