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Survey of land and real estate transactions in the Russian Federation (Vol. 3) : Annex 2 to the cross-regional report - statistical templates by procedures (English)

Businesses continuously complain that there has been very little land privatization to date, and that the limited amount of privatization that has taken place has suffered from severe inconsistencies, non-transparency, and outright favoritism. The business surveys reinforce these findings, with concerns about "need to rely on connections", excessive discretion, and a higher degree of corruption associated with real-estate transactions than most other administrative procedures. The new Land Code of the Russian Federation explicitly calls for land to be privatized. However, most land of interest to businesses is still owned, or controlled by municipal governments. This gives municipal governments strong "market power" as near-monopolist land lords. While new federal legislation constrains their legal discretion in setting land rents and related terms, there is still considerable evidence of municipalities abusing their market power through administrative barriers, not necessarily to keep rents high, but more often to favor some firms over others, and/or exercise undue influence over local business development. The survey covers the 9 key administrative procedures for access to land, and real estate by businesses in the 15 regions included in the survey. Land transactions in general appear to be magnets for corruption. On average, according to the business intermediaries who carry out such transactions on a regular basis, over half of privatization transactions involve "unofficial payments". A deeper analysis of the data will be required for a more complete understanding of the situation. However, it is generally acknowledged that a functioning secondary market in land is now critically important in order to ensure a level playing field for competition in the Russian economy, to remove the last of the most onerous "administrative barriers" to investment, and to encourage the development of mortgage finance as a source of long-term capital for investment.

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Survey of land and real estate transactions in the Russian Federation (Vol. 3) : Annex 2 to the cross-regional report - statistical templates by procedures (English). Washington, D.C. : World Bank Group. http://documents.worldbank.org/curated/en/663111468096244171/Annex-2-to-the-cross-regional-report-statistical-templates-by-procedures