Getting rich or ending up in prison from land deals

During a group discussion at the latest National Assembly session, President Nguyen Xuan Phuc said that many people got rich thanks to land, but many others have been imprisoned due to land.

This is an accurate overview of the current status of land management and use in Vietnam.

It is a huge responsibility of the compilers of the revised Land Law to best promote this extremely important resource and at the same time minimize gaps and limitations to prevent special interest groups from acquiring and extracting benefits from land.

Market price

Getting rich or ending up in prison from land deals

Among the nine contents reported by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment to seek opinions to amend the Land Law, there is content on perfecting methods of land price determination to ensure objectivity, transparency, correctness and completeness of added value from advantageous factors in line with market prices.

Land valuation is one of the most important contents of the revised Land Law. This is what people expect because there is a huge gap between the compensation price and the land value on the market. The people whose land is recovered always suffer losses, and vice versa, the added value of land after the conversion belongs to the project owners. In many cases, land value is "transferred" from public assets to private assets by interest groups who take advantage of loopholes in the law.

Prof. Dang Hung Vo, former Deputy Minister of Natural Resources and Environment, said that the law stipulates that public land and public real estate are owned by the entire people, but the right to make decisions related to the use of these public assets are empowered to a number of officials in the administrative apparatus.

In both theory and practice, it has been shown that corruption risks always arise in places where decision power is not controlled, especially when decision-making power creates benefits for a group of people. Thus, when the administrative apparatus has the right to decide on both land and land value, it may be influenced by special interests, and it only depends on the morality of the person who has the authority to decide.

“The Land Law has Articles 199 and 200 on building and operating a good governance mechanism to control decision-making power over land. Unfortunately, this law has been in force for six years, but Articles 199 and 200 are still on paper. Therefore, it is not unusual that large land corruption cases have appeared and continue to appear," Vo said.

Getting rich or ending up in prison from land deals

Acknowledging shortcomings in land management, at the conference reviewing eight years of implementation of the Land Law held on June 24, 2021, Minister of Natural Resources and Environment Tran Hong Ha said that land resources have not been fully promoted to become an important internal force for the country's socio-economic development. Land resources are left to waste, left fallow, and are inefficiently used.

Land recovery, compensation, support and resettlement in some places have not yet ensured the harmonization of interests between the State, the person whose land is recovered, and the investor. The real estate market, including land use rights, is still weak and inconsistent. The organization and implementation of the Land Law is still not strict; and violations of the Land Law, and the situation of complaints, denunciations and disputes over land is still complicated.

 

To deal with these shortcomings, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment is studying the overlap in legal provisions which reduces the effectiveness of the implementation of policies and laws on land, paying special attention to the mechanism for settling disputes and complaints about land, strengthening the role of judicial agencies.

One of the focuses of the revised Land Law is to improve the methods of determining land prices to ensure objectivity, transparency, correctness and fullness of added values from beneficial factors in line with market prices.

The rights of land users

Getting rich or ending up in prison from land deals

On September 9, 2021, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment announced Decision 1732 on the detailed plan for the revised Land Law.

Accordingly, the draft law was published on the Ministry's website and the Government Portal for comments from subjects mentioned in the law in the fourth week of October. After that, the Ministry will consider and explain the appraisal opinions of the Ministry of Justice; complete the draft and submit it to the Government before January 10, 2022; and coordinate with the relevant agencies of the National Assembly to complete the draft law to submit to the National Assembly at the 3rd session in May 2022.

In the revised Land Law, the Ministry emphasizes the contents on land finance and land prices; land recovery; land allocation, land lease, change of land-use purpose; compensation, support and resettlement when the State recovers land; land statistics and inventory; management and use of land upon equitization of state enterprises; and the monitoring, evaluating and supervising of management and use of land.

The importance of the revised Land Law was affirmed by National Assembly Chairwoman Vuong Dinh Hue at a meeting with the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment on August 19, 2021. He said that the revised Land Law must ensure the rights of land users.

Kien Trung

When officials join hands with ‘preying stalkers’ in land bids

When officials join hands with ‘preying stalkers’ in land bids

Many wrongdoings related to land auctions and bids have been exposed recently. Most of the defendants in the land irregularity cases are high-ranking officials of agencies and institutions.

Famous businesswomen meet in prison because of land irregularities

Famous businesswomen meet in prison because of land irregularities

Nguyen Thi Loan, Chau Thi Thu Nga, Pham Thi Tuyet Nhung and Truong Thi Kim Soan, once famous businesswomen in the real estate market, have had to pay for their illegal business affairs.

 
 

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