L A W
No. 7501 dated 19. 07. 1991
Based on articles 16 of the Law No. 7491 dated 29. 04. 1991 “On basic constitutional provisions”, upon proposal from the Council of Ministers,
The Peoples Assembly of the Republic of Albania
HAS DECIDED AS FOLLOWS:
In the Republic of Albania, the land is classified into:
a) Agricultural land occupied by agricultural crops and orchards, vineyards and olive groves situated in any place, in villages, in cities, or any other inhabited area, irrespective of their size;
b) Land occupied by forests, pastures and meadows;
c) Non-agricultural land; occupied by economic, socio cultural, military buildings and related facilities; by living premises and yards; land occupied by public facilities (roads, highways, airports, railways, public grounds, parks, gardens, sports grounds, cemeteries); rocky areas, coastal sandbanks, beaches, wetlands (lakes, reservoirs, ponds), canals, rivers, streams, marshlands, gravel lands, the grounds of historical buildings and monuments, as well as archaeological sites.
The state distributes land to physical and legal entities whereupon they become entitled to ownership rights and other rights as provided by law.
It is prohibited to sell or buy land.
The state grants ownership or lease rights over agricultural land to legal and physical entities free of charge.
Foreign physical and legal entities may acquire construction grounds at established lease rates. The purpose and duration of the lease are subject to contractual agreements.
Lease rates are determined on the basis of value of lease object, location of the ground and other economic considerations in accordance with criteria developed by the Council of Ministers.
Households who used to be members of former agricultural cooperatives, following the distribution of land; are entitled to become separate subjects whereupon they become owners of the agricultural land awarded to them. The size and location of the land to be allocated to each household is the competence of the Land Commission.
In mountainous and hilly areas, where households cannot be awarded sufficient land for their livelihood, the state institutes measures to provide supplementary living resources through subsidies, investments for job openings, social welfare programs and controlled movements of the population based on the program of measures to be endorsed by the Council of Ministers.
Households in the villages who were not members of the agricultural cooperatives and households working and living on state owned farms are also awarded land in sizes to be determined in accordance with established criteria, which they can utilize to make their living.
To distribute land to physical and legal entities, both in ownership and utility title, and to address problems created in the recent times, the following commissions are established: The State Commission on land at the Ministry of Agriculture and Food, Land Commissions at the Executive Committees of the People’s Council; and Land Commissions at the People’s Councils in the villages.
The duties and rights of these commissions are defined by Decision of the Council of Ministers.
The distribution of land, either in ownership or utility title, will take count of neither former ownership, nor the land boundaries and sizes before collectivization.
The specialized authority in possession of data concerning the land is the cadastre at the executive committees of the people’s councils at the districts.
The land that passes into the ownership or utility of physical and legal entities is registered in the cadastre.
In any case, subsequent changes to the first registration are always registered in the cadastre.
The legal and physical entities, who already enjoy or gain ownership or utility title, are obligated to use the land for agricultural purposes alone, to preserve and increase the production capacity of the land, as well as to constructs works to protect and administer it in an orderly fashion.
The owners and users of agricultural land are obligated to protect electricity and irrigation facilities, equipment and installations. No owner or user has the right to obstruct other owners and users from utilizing these equipments and installations.
The structures of government at the central and grass root level have the power to dissolve disagreements that may arise.
Dwelling houses, buildings for economic, socio economic and any other activity are constructed within the boundary line (the yellow line).
Construction land is acquired with or without payment in accordance with criteria established by the Council of Ministers.
Any kind of construction on agricultural land outside the boundary line is prohibited except when the competent authorities issue a special decree to the contrary.
The full value of constructions and installations must be included in the cost of land.
In accordance with regulations developed by the Council of Ministers, buildings and establishments serving the purposes of agriculture and stock breeding activity may be constructed on agricultural land.
If over a period of one year, a physical or legal entity with utility rights does not use the land for agricultural or stockbreeding purposes, such right shall be withdrawn.
The physical and legal entities that have obtained ownership or utility title for construction and other economic activities, if failing to honor the contractual deadline for completion of the activity, will be obligated to pay a fine equaling the average annual rent of the land.
Industrial and mineral waste and waters containing chemical substances harmful to farming will be channeled and collected in specially designated sites to protect the land, the plants and water from pollution and to avoid threats to human, animal and fowl health. Sites for waste collection are approved as part of the construction ground for the object. If waste collection sites are not foreseen in the application, the application will not be considered.
It is prohibited to dump or bury any dangerous waste, locally produced or imported.
Upon endorsement of the projects and construction grounds by the relevant authorities, the land passes into ownership or lease of the entity undertaking the construction, but in any case not earlier than three months before the start of construction operations. Changes in the cadastre are effectuated following the start of such operations.
Ownership or utility title is taken away from legal or physical entities when so required by important state interests in accordance with decisions made by the relevant authorities. If in the name of indispensable state needs, the construction takes place on land belonging to physical or legal entities, the state is obligated to compensate the entities with equal size land and in cases of impossibility of in-kind compensation, the state will indemnify the value of investment and the real value of the land. Indemnification disagreements are taken to the courts.
Damages caused in orchards, olive groves, vineyards, agricultural crops, in objects serving economic, social and cultural purposes, are indemnified by the subject causing the damage. The amount of indemnification is estimated by the executive committee of the people’s council of the region as per the real value of the damage.
The court dissolves disagreements on the amount of indemnification.
Organs of the local power of the respective jurisdiction must prevent any act of occupation or damage to the land under their jurisdiction and acts that come into conflict with this law and related by-laws.
In cases of occupation or damage to the land, members of the people’s council at the respective jurisdiction, the owners or users of the land, the cadastre and city planning employees and people’s police are obligated to hold a report demanding the violator to return the land to its former condition within 3 days, otherwise the report is sent to the following bodies to take respective steps:
The people’s council of the village, the quarter, the city or the area, who within two days must make a decision to demolish the object and return the land to its former condition. The decision is executed by the body having made it within 5 days from the date of the respective decision-making. Expenses for returning the land to its former condition are charged to the violator.
The office of the cadastre to institute the administrative punishment when the violation is not a criminal offence.
The investigating authority when the violation is a criminal offence or the decision of the respective people’s council has not been implemented.
When the land is seized, occupied or damaged by a third entity, the owner or user is entitled to institute court proceedings.
Persons who: violate the provisions of this law and relevant by-laws passed by the Council of Ministers; do not utilize the land themselves, but turn it in to third parties; do not protect the land; set up illegal buildings; fail to service the land as scheduled in the contractual agreement; and fail to notify the cadastre office on changes in the condition of the land, in ownership or utility title, on no legitimate grounds, within the prescribed time limits, when these violations do not qualify as a criminal offense, are punished as administrative infringements with fines from 2000-5000 leks by cadastre chief-of-party in the district.
Punishment may be appealed within 10 days of its communication with the Chairman of the Executive Committee of the People’s Council in the District whose decision is final.
Persons who, in violation of the legal provisions, seize the land or abuse it in any manner are subject to judgment in accordance with provisions of the Criminal Code.
Criteria for distribution, registration, change, transfer of ownership, appraisal or leasing the land, as well as the responsibilities of the cadastre offices are deliberated by the Council of Ministers.
Agricultural land owned in accordance with the provisions of this laws, will be subject to regulation by the heritage legal provisions to be endorsed.
Law No. 5686 dated 21. 02. 1987 “On protection of land” and all by-laws coming into conflict with this law are hereby repealed.
This law enters into force immediately.
PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC