K. Skrekas: Solution to the issue of forested fields

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The issue of the chronic dispute of the state over the ownership of the forested fields, which are agricultural areas, which were afforested due to their abandonment in difficult historical conditions, but also of their current or future utilization, as announced by the ministry after its legislative intervention Environment, while at the same time an important step is taken for the completion of forest maps. The issue is settled after a relevant order of RIS, in a bill of the Ministry of Interior which was voted on Tuesday night by the Parliament.

“By respecting the decisions of the Council of State, the Supreme Court and especially the provisions of the Constitution, we solve the problems that emerged from the posting of forest maps in order to complete this major reform,” said PEN Minister Costas Skrekas.

As he stressed, “with the provision for the afforested fields, we give the possibility to cultivate areas that remained unexploited for decades. In the next period, we will try to settle the issue of the former deforested areas”. According to him, “the ratification of forest maps guarantees the protection of the environment, public property and the legal individual rights of citizens. It also contributes to the creation of a clear framework for land use, while paving the way for the completion of the Land Registry. “which is also an important reform to protect citizens’ property and safeguard the public interest.”

The legislation provides, inter alia, for the following:

The State no longer claims ownership of land that had an agricultural form in the aerial photographs of 1945 or 1960, regardless of the form they have today, unless it itself has property titles.

If the plot was agricultural in the past but today is a forest and up to 30 acres, it will be allowed to use only for agricultural and arboricultural exploitation, without the possibility of further change of use.

If the plot was agricultural in 1945 or 1960 and today is considered a forest area it is no longer subject to forest legislation and all uses are allowed. The condition is to prove the ownership or legal connection of the owner with the property, something that is not necessarily done only with titles, but also with any institutionally provided evidence from which the legal connection with the property is probable.

The designation of the area (forest or forest) is carried out, if there is no forest register, but there is a posted forest map, by the Forest Unit Committee of the Regional Unit, even if the specific area has been declared reforestable.

The areas that have been designated as forested fields throughout the country are estimated at 6.9 million acres. By resolving the issue of afforested fields, incentives are provided for the return of the population to mountainous and semi-mountainous areas. The return of the population to these areas will contribute to both rural development and the better protection of forest ecosystems from fires and other natural disasters, by clearing these fields.

On the other hand, the Deputy Minister of Environment and Energy, George Amyras, stated: “With this specific legislative provision we give to the ancestral land its original characterization. Fields cultivated by our parents or grandparents, then abandoned and cultivated. “The lands are given to their rightful owners to cultivate them again and to use them in accordance with the forest legislation. We invite the young people to take advantage of this opportunity!”

Source: Capital

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