1.8m cases of encroachment on agricultural lands: MP

Shaimaa Al-Aees
3 Min Read

The total number of building violations on agricultural lands during the period from 25 January 2011 until July 2018 reached1.8m cases, Omar Watany, member of parliament’s housing committee told Daily News Egypt.

Watany added, “as estimated by the Ministry of Local Development in its reports for 2017 for the governorates of Cairo, Giza and Alexandria, the number of building violations registered 257,000 ranging between violations of heights, construction on agricultural land, state property or building without permits.”

The housing committee expects to obtain EGP 50bn of revenues from the adoption of ‘Reconciliation on Building Violations Law’, which is currently being discussed and is scheduled for approval this year, revealed Watany.

He noted that the committee is approaching the finalisation of the old rent law after opening a community-based dialogue. Subsequently, amendments will be discussed in a general parliament session.

“The housing committee has completed the ‘Reconciliation on Building Violations Law,’ and submitted its report to the parliament’s secretary general, and it is scheduled for approval within two months, Watany indicated, adding “the reason for the delay in issuing the draft law is the existence of some overlapping laws. The law stipulates the formation of a committee in each governorate to determine the value of violated square metre and the violation according to the city or village.”

He confirmed that this estimated amount of money will be used to increase the efficiency of drainage and water services.

The ‘Reconciliation on Building Violations Law’ will be approved in parallel with the ‘Unified Building Law’ to avoid a legislative gap, he highlighted.

Watany elaborated that the reconciliation law is a temporary one, and the committee is considering its general non-renewable application, as it aims to eliminate and address the problems of existing violations without reconciling new violations.

“It is noteworthy that the old rent law is currently being discussed by parliament, which aims to achieve the landlord’s interest by keeping and guaranteeing the tenant’s rights. The aim of the housing committee is to consider the interests of both parties,” he said. “There is also the real estate registration law, which the committee is keen to approve. “

He added that the parliament asked the government to send the law to parliament for discussion, as well as to amend the real estate tax law and add 5 new items to the current law.

Watany explained that the amendments to be added to the current real estate tax law exclude the imposition of a tax on units that do not generate income, especially that over 45% of properties in Egypt are not registered. Therefore, the real estate registration law must be adopted, before discussing imposing taxes on vacant units or not.

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