Novelties in Slovenian legislation: Amendments to the Agricultural Land Act

05 May 2022

On April 13, 2022 the Amendments to the Agricultural Land Act (ZKZ) (Official Gazette of Republic of Slovenia, No. 44/22) entered into force. Members of Parliament adopted the amendments on their 30th regular parliamentary session, where some other acts in the fields of agriculture, forestry, hunting and fishing have also been approved.

Below are outlined some of the main highlights and changes to the Act.

The newly added article (Article 3čb) defines a rule that permits the installation of greenhouses (if they are placed on the market as a product that meets the requirements of regulations governing general product safety and the method of production is directly linked to agricultural land) and other auxiliary agricultural and forestry equipment (for example support for hail or bird nets, fence for grazing livestock, rattle, wire fence ...) to the area of agricultural land, where auxiliary equipment may only be used for agricultural purposes.

There is also novelty when it comes to the obligation to pay compensation for changing the purpose of agricultural land. The amendment to the Act stipulates the obligation to pay compensation also for agricultural lands with a credit rating more than 35 (Article 3g), while in the old version of the Act, compensation had to be paid only for lands with a credit rating of more than 50.

Another important novelty is the shortening of the deadline for accepting an offer to purchase agricultural land, forest or farm. With the amendment the deadline was shortened from the previous 30, to the current 15 days from the day when the offer was published on the notice board of the administrative unit (Article 20). Other provisions regarding the submission of the offer remain the same.

Furthermore, simplifications have been introduced in connection to agricultural operations, wherein all decisions, resolution and other documents will now be delivered by regular mail (Article 44a). In the event that service will not be carried out due to a deficient address, service of the decision, resolution or other document shall be made by publishing it on the unified state portal of E-government. Administrative verification procedures are no longer stipulated, it will no longer be necessary to enter irrigation contracts in the land register, while changing the areas of irrigation and drainage systems is also simplified.

In the part on irrigation systems, the possibility of building state irrigation systems is added. Additionally, the amendment introduces a new agricultural operation of unbundling of co-ownership on agricultural land (Article 98b) co-owned by the Republic of Slovenia and on which co-ownership has been established following final denationalisation proceedings.