Initially, the law on the moratorium was introduced by the Verkhovna Rada in January 2001 and provided for short-term action until new law on the circulation of agricultural land or the corresponding norm in the Land Code is adopted. Later, in the same year 2001, the parliament adopted the Land Code, but it did not deal with the cancellation of the moratorium, on the contrary, the law continued its validity until the end of 2005. After that, the moratorium was extended 8 more times: in 2004, 2006, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015 and most recently in 2016 – until January 1, 2018.
On January 1, 2018, the President of Ukraine, Petro Poroshenko, signed a law that extends the moratorium for sale or alienation of agricultural land by another way for one year. Thereafter, the article was published in Bloomberg, which states that the yield in Ukraine remains one of the lowest in Europe due to the ban on the sale of agricultural land.
“In January-September 2017, Ukraine increased agricultural exports by 13 billion dollars, which is about 40% of total exports. The country is among the world’s producers of sunflower oil, barley, wheat and corn. Nevertheless, there is a huge untapped potential: despite the fact that Ukraine can boast one of the richest concentrations of fertile black earth in the world, its yield is one of the lowest in Europe”, said in the article.
The publication cites the November report of the World Bank, according to which the productivity of farms in Ukraine is significantly inferior to similar indicators in other European countries. In particular, the wheat yield in Germany is more than half the Ukrainian index. “According to the World Bank, this is due to the effect of the moratorium on the sale of land”, said in Bloomberg.
It is noted that calls for cancelling the moratorium are getting louder as the Ukrainian economy continues to lag behind neighboring countries like Romania and Poland.
The publication emphasizes that Ukrainian government is under the pressure of the International Monetary Fund and large agro holdings, which require the cancellation of the moratorium.
Agricultural companies interviewed by the publication noted that they will be able to increase profitability and profit if they own land on which they work.