In early February 2010 unification and integration was announced at the level of law under the roof of the Ministry of Justice of Ukraine, a procedure of the state registration of titles to land plots with procedure of state registration of titles to real property. According to Alexandra Fedotova, partner, head of real estate practice of Spenser & Kauffmann, it is expected that a new-look single register will begin to operate from 1 January 2012. “Taking into consideration the long history of this issue, let's hope that the single register will be open at last. On October 2010 the licensing conditions for carrying out the activities on conducting land tenders were approved, which allowed starting the issue of appropriate licenses. As is known, the land tenders should be conducted in the approved law order by those persons, who have appropriate licenses. Until recently, in spite of legislation, land tenders have been conducted by commodity exchanges without such licenses. Thus, only the issue regarding the order of conducting land tenders is unresolved,” outlined the expert.
Baker & McKenzie is regarded among the strongest legal practices in real estate and land related matters. In 2010 its projects portfolio included advising a major multinational communications corporation on legal issues regarding lease agreement in Kiev and representation of diplomatic missions of foreign states on legal issues in connection with the acquisition of land plots and property for the purpose of the construction of new compounds in Kiev. Lina Nemchenko, partner, Olena Klymenko, associate, handled land related work.
The lawyers of Vasil Kisil & Partners traditionally support a great number of land related transactions. Recent highlights include advising Leroy Merlin Ukraine in acquisition of a land plot for construction purposes. Among clients are Pioneer Hi-Bred International, Delim B.V., Ukravtodor, Alpcot Agro, Seven Hills, Ukravtodor. Oleg Alyoshyn, partner, Natalia Dotsenko-Belous and Alexander Borodkin are known as the firm’s key specialists.
Konnov & Sozanovsky is active in permanent advisory work, land transactions and comprehensive investment projects. The year of 2010 was rich in litigation work, when the team led by Vitaliy Pravdyuk and Dmitriy Sichkar, represented its client’s interests in the Kiev Region Court of Appeal in a dispute on the delimitation of a land plot as well as on the elimination of obstacles for its use; acted for a Ukrainian company, in the Kiev Commercial Court, Kiev Appeal Commercial Court, and in the Supreme Commercial Court of Ukraine, in a dispute concerning the purchase-and-sale agreement with regard to a land plot in Kiev.
Arzinger regularly handles land aspects of construction projects. For example, the team supported investor’s interest in purchasing a plot of land in Kiev for the construction of an office complex and advised client Porsche Ukraine on the acquisition of a land plot for the construction of a logistics centre. Partners Timur Bondaryev and Maksym Cherkasenko make up the core of a widely-known team in Ukraine.
The real estate team of DLA Piper led by partner Natalia Kochergina, provides clients with full legal support in land and real estate transactions. The firm’s lawyers recently conducted legal due diligence of land plots on which construction of a grain terminal in one of Ukrainian ports is contemplated for an international grain trading company. The team also provided legal advice to a foreign investor with regard to structuring its relations with a Ukrainian partner in Kerch Sea Trade Port and conducted legal due diligence of real estate and land plots. The office provided full legal support to a foreign investor within an intra-company buyout of a foreign company owning a land plot in the centre of Kiev for the purpose of subsequent development of an office and sport centre.
The Kiev office of CMS Cameron McKenna deliver support to its international clients integrated into comprehensive investment projects. Highlights include giving advice to a European wind farm developer on land allocation and rezoning issues in relation to wind mill start-up wind farm project. The team has also advised a Dutch producer of animal food products in connection with the acquisition/lease of a land plot in Western Ukraine for placing its production facilities. Daniel Bilak, Olga Zaplatinska and Nataliya Kushniruk are regularly involved in related projects.
Alexandrov & Partners is strongly focused on land practice. In 2010 the practicing team, namely: Dmytro Alexandrov, Dmytro Slobodyan, Yevhen Ilarionov, provided full legal support to Trigon Agri in Ukraine as to the acquisition of land resources.
During 2010 Spenser & Kauffmann handled representation of a private investor on providing due diligence of land plots in Kirovograd Region as well as mining permits; advised a private international equity fund in connection with due diligence of 80 land lease agreements; represented Global Service LLC on acquisition of a land plot in Kiev. Alexandra Fedotova, head of real estate and land practice, is known in professional circles.
The Kiev office of Salans handles land aspects of M&A deals. Over the past year the team was entrusted by AgroGeneration, Accor Group, Bonduelle Group. Myron Rabij, partner, Anzhelika Shtukaturova, associate, worked on the corresponding projects.
Within its real estate practice, Gvozdiy & Oberkovych advise clients on complex land issues. In 2010 partners Sergiy Oberkovych, Valentyn Gvozdiy, and associate Oleg Tarasyuk gave support to a number of companies operating in the agricultural sector, where the firm guided an Irish company, Donegal FRS, though a wide range of land law issues with respect to a pilot bio electricity project. As part of continued cooperation, the firm advised the owners of Europa Business Center on real estate management and related law issues.
The Kiev office of Beiten Burkhardt comprehensively covers issues arising in the course of running projects and provided legal assistance to WKN Windkraft Nord AG on acquisition of land and development of wind farms in Ukraine. Dr. Julian Ries and Dr. Oleksiy Feliv led the project.
Lavrynovych & Partners has recently been involved in advising mostly domestic clients with a particular focus on the dispute front. The team gave comprehensive advice to the Institute of Biochemical Technologies as to the cancellation of arrests of land plots to the value of USD 3.7 million. The main practitioners are Stanislav Scrypnyck, Andrey Moroz, Arthur Kiyan.
The most notable experience of Gide Loyrette Nouel from the past year is assistance to a major foreign logistics company on the possible acquisition of the state-owned land on which an important logistics centre is located and on other issues concerning the normative value of a land plot and land tax. Karl Hepp de Sevelinges, Bertrand Barrier, Tetyana Bessarab handled the project.
Gramatskiy & Partners regularly acts for developers and ensures legal support for the purchase-and-sale of land plots across different regions of Ukraine. The firm recently assisted Park Lane and other developers in the procedure for execution of rights to land plots. Yuriy Zabiyaka and Michael Soroka carried out land related projects.
Pavlenko & Poberezhnyuk was particularly busy with land disputes. The team recently protected the interests of Corporation Veda in a dispute with Intercom Ltd on the right to use a land area (servitude) in Kiev; assisted Euromail Ltd in the dispute as to the establishing land servitude on the area in a central part of Kiev. Larysa Poberezhnyuk and Olena Protsenko were entrusted with arranging the client’s representation.
The previous year saw KM Partners provided comprehensive legal support of formalization of title rights to land plots for subsequent development; assisted in the formalization of title rights to land plots dedicated for construction of infrastructure for goods transshipment in sea ports. Notably, the team led by Maxim Oleksiyuk received successful experience on supporting clients in court proceedings regarding amending land leases.
Lexwell & Partners regularly covers land projects for its industrial clients. Andriy Kolupaev and Igor Nagai worked on legal assistance to a large metallurgical holding as to the points of acquiring land plots for the purpose of port construction.
ILF Law Firm is active in both regions of its presence, Kharkov and Kiev. Recent highlights included legal structuring of a USD 7 million land property deal and advising on rezoning a land plot for the purpose of constructing a logistics center; legal structuring of a land property deal and handling registration of a land title to a business center in Kharkov. Partner Yaroslava Onika manages land projects.
Sayenko Kharenko continued to be active in the area, advising major foreign and Ukrainian development companies in land acquisitions for residential and commercial construction, agriculture development, as well as greenfield and brownfield investment projects. Dmytro Korbut covers land law advice.
The practice of LCF Law Group is constantly rich in diverse land disputes. For example, in 2010 lawyers acted for such clients as MTD-Invest, Mikom House and cooperative society Rassvet. Anna Ogrenchuk and Artem Stoianov successfully ran recent cases.
Paritet Law Firm focused predominantly on regulatory and compliance advice, land due diligence, purchase and lease of land plots. The clientele included Dan-Farm Ukraine LLC, Milkiland, Morion LLC. Of late the team of Igor Kyrylyuk, Yuliya Cherkashina and Maksym Sysoiev provided due diligence of Milkiland with respect to the leasing of farming land plots.
With its strong focus in real estate and construction, KPD Consulting provides coverage of land issues. In 2010 it represented Italian company Universal Folder LLC in land issues regarding construction of a printing factory in Kiev Region. Vladyslav Kysil is a key figure.
Irina Shlyahovskaya of Legal Alliance provided full legal support to Spetszemtehnika PE in a court case for cancellation of the emphyteusis lease agreement registration. Legal Consulting Centre advised on land plot registration caused by reorganization of an enterprise with foreign investments Interservice-kashtan. Avellum Partners provided legal support to a leading agricultural holding in Ukraine in connection with development of its land bank through acquisition of agricultural companies. The lawyers of Vronskiy, Vronskaya & Partners led by Svetlana Boris, provided legal support at all stages of the process in defending the interests of a large developer in a case as to the confirmation of rights to a plot of land. Guided by partner Maksym Kopeychykov, Ilyashev & Partners acted for private investors in over 20 deals as to purchase of land plots in Kiev Region and Crimea. ANK Law Firm provided full legal support in the acquisition of leasing rights to a land plot in Odessa Region for mining operations.