Simplified Procedure for Changing Designated Purpose of Land Plots

The active position of Ukraine’s institutional investors (the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development allocated EUR 2.1 billion in 2023 alone), the development of internal and external instruments for insuring against military and political risks, and the simplification of national legislation aim to attract foreign capital into Ukraine.

On 6 February, 2024 the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine adopted the Law of Ukraine On Amendments to Certain Legislative Acts of Ukraine on Simplifying the Procedure for Changing the Designated Purpose of Land Plots for Attracting Investments for the Rapid Reconstruction of Ukraine No. 3563-IX, which came into force on 28 May, 2024 (hereinafter – the “Law”). The title of this document sounds promising, so let’s find out what the procedure used to be and how it has changed, and which lands are covered by the provisions of the Law.

For comparison, the regular procedure for changing the designated purpose of land plots in Ukraine includes the following steps:

  1. Submission of a notarized application for changing the designated purpose of the land plot signed by the owner;
  2. Ordering a land management plan for land plot allocation and, accordingly, concluding an agreement with an organization that employs at least two certified surveying engineers or with a sole proprietor who is a certified surveying engineer;
  3. Submission by the land plot owner of a developed land management plan for approval by the village, town, or city council, respectively, and approval of such a project by the body of local self-government;
  4. Entering information into the State Land Cadastre. For this purpose, land management documentation shall be submitted to the State Cadastral Registrar through the Administrative Service Center (ASC) or an authorized official of the executive body of the body of local self-government;
  5. Registration of rights to real estate in the State Register of Rights — registration of title to a land plot. This can be done by applying to an administrative service center or a notary with the appropriate set of documents.

Instead, the new Law provides that during the period of martial law in Ukraine and within 5 years from the date of its termination, the designated purpose of land plots may be changed:

  1. By a decision of the land plot owner, by submitting an application for entering information on the changed designated purpose of the land plot into the State Land Cadastre;
  2. Without developing land management documentation;
  3. Failure to comply with the rules for correlating the types of the designated purpose of land plots and the types of functional designation of territories;
  4. On the basis of a reasoned opinion of the relevant authorized body of urban planning and architecture on the possibility of placing the relevant facility on the land plot in accordance with the requirements of regulatory acts.

It should be noted that the simplification applies to land plots:  1) in those territories outside settlements for which there is no approved urban planning documentation at the local level; 2) and on which it is planned to locate certain types of facilities.

Exceptions: lands of water, nature reserve fund and other environmental protection purposes, historical, cultural, recreational, health, forestry purposes.

Urban planning documentation

Urban planning documentation shall mean: a comprehensive plan (which includes a zoning plan as its integral part), a master plan of a settlement (which includes a zoning plan as its integral part); a zoning plan as a separate type of urban planning documentation at the local level approved before the Law of Ukraine On Amendments to Certain Legislative Acts of Ukraine on Land Use Planning comes into force, a detailed plan of the territory. 

Construction sites

Since the simplified procedure is focused on the development of territories and industries, and the restoration of the energy sector of Ukraine, the Law establishes a list of structures/buildings to be constructed on these land plots, namely:

  • industrial and warehouse buildings;
  • non-residential agricultural buildings; pipelines, lines of electronic communication networks and power lines (except for main oil and gas pipelines);
  • complex structures of industrial facilities (except for structures of enterprises engaged in the extraction, production and processing of nuclear materials, structures of enterprises and facilities for the enrichment and processing of nuclear fuel; structures of enterprises intended for thermal treatment (incineration) of household waste; nuclear power plants).

In turn, investors need to understand some of the peculiarities of the land for which the procedure for changing the designated purpose has been simplified.

First, since a simplified change of the designated purpose of land plots is possible outside of settlements and in the absence of approved urban planning documentation, the lack of housing and logistics infrastructure in the area should be taken into account.

The construction of industrial facilities and warehouses outside the settlement will in most cases require investment in the construction of a quality roads, utilities, etc., which may constitute a significant portion of the investment. Should an industrial facility need to be constantly staffed by a large number of employees, it may also be advisable to build residential infrastructure in the future.

Second, it should be taken into account that Ukraine is under martial law and there are lands contaminated with explosives/mines or which are unusable due to the potential threat of contamination with explosives/mines. The law provides for the creation of a Register of Territories Contaminated/Potentially Contaminated with Explosives. However, until such a register comes into existence, it is worth carefully studying and initiating a survey of the land plot for investment for such contamination by explosives/mines.

Third, simplification of this procedure looks quite interesting for investors, but it does not in any way affect the attractiveness of making investments, in the form of tax benefits or granting the preferential right to use state or municipal land for the implementation of an investment project.

The fact is that the specified simplification is only one of the forms of state support for attracting investments along with those defined. For example, by making significant investments in Ukraine: exemption from payment of certain taxes and duties in accordance with the Tax Code of Ukraine; exemption from import duty taxation of new equipment (machinery) and accessories for it in accordance with the Customs Code of Ukraine; ensuring the preferential right of use of a state-owned or municipal land plot for the implementation of an investment project; ensuring the construction of adjacent infrastructure facilities (roads, communication lines, heat, gas, water and electricity supply facilities, engineering communications, etc.) at the expense of funds from the state and local budgets and from other sources not prohibited by law, etc., necessary for the implementation of an investment project with significant investments.

In general terms, we should note positive dynamics in the efforts to improve Ukraine’s investment climate at the legislative level, which we hope will be implemented in the future.

  • Olena Shtohryn

    Founding and Managing Partner, Attorney /Legal Counsellor/Mediator, Dictio



6A Reitarska Street, Office 35,

Kyiv, 01034, Ukraine

Tel: +38 097 719 05 33,

Nowogrodska 11,

Poland, 00-513, Warsaw,

Tel: +48 789 902771



Dictio is a boutique law firm in Ukraine, which provides a full range of legal services to clients in real estate and construction, investments, disputes resolution.

The company was founded back in 2019 by an attorney and mediator, Mrs Olena Shtohryn, who is a Ukrainian attorney (admitted to the Ukrainian National Bar Association Kyiv Regional Bar Association in 2011), legal counselor and mediator. In 2022 she was listed as a foreign attorney who could practice in Poland (Ukrainian and international law) (Warsaw Bar Association). In January 2021, the Dictio team was strengthened by Mr. Serhii Shtohryn, a partner, attorney and licensed as an insolvency practitioner; he specializes in disputes resolution, white-collar crime, debt restructuring and bankruptcy proceedings.

Since the beginning of Russia’s full-scale war, the company has been actively consulting on changes in the real estate and construction sector in Ukraine during the period of martial law, issues related to reconstruction projects, attracting foreign investment, insuring against military and political risks, establishing partnerships between foreign investors and Ukrainian companies, etc.

In June 2022 Dictio and Miller Canfield (USA/Poland) signed an affiliation to help their clients in expansion and investments (Ukraine – Polish – USA). The affiliation is lead by Olena Shtohryn (Managing Partner Dictio, Ukraine), Andrzej Chelchowski, (Principal MC Poland) and Richard Walawender (Principal MC USA). In 2023 an important role in defense-related cases was played by Pawel Chudzicki (Managing Director MC, Washington D.C.).

Rebuilding Ukraine will be impossible without the participation of foreign investments and construction companies. It became clear to both companies that it’s important to join forces to be more effective and, in future, to participate in the implementation of the Post-War Recovery Plan. The affiliation will benefit the clients of both firms as they prepare for the reconstruction of Ukraine. The main specialization of Dictio is real estate and construction law. The firm is a member of the Board of Directors of the Confederation of Builders of Ukraine. Miller Canfield’s international clients will gain access to Dictio’s extensive industry experience and deep understanding of the dynamic legal and institutional environment of contemporary Ukraine. Likewise, Dictio’s clients will benefit from extensive worldwide legal and business networks. The company’s portfolio includes leading international and national companies, construction holdings, investment and development companies, suppliers and manufacturers of construction materials, investors, high-net worth individuals, etc.  The company possesses a specialized industry (construction/real estate/investments) focus. It is focused on:

  • pre-trial settlement (including alternative methods) and litigation settlement of all types of disputes related to real estate and construction;
  • due diligence of real estate and unfinished construction projects for the purpose of their acquisition, restoration, reconstruction, construction completion;
  • legal counselling to conclusion of real estate, investments and construction related contracts;
  • advising on the application of city-planning, land and land-use legislation;
  • changes in real estate and construction in Ukraine during martial law and lawmaking;
  • investments.

Teams of 3-10 experienced subject matter lawyers handle the company’s Ukrainian and international projects. Working in international projects company creates (usually Polish-Ukrainian USA) teams of lawyers, depends on the jurisdictions involved and a client’s needs.

Professional Liability is insured and covered by ALAS (Attorneys Liability Assurance Society, (international), Private Joint Stock Company RIDNA INSURANCE COMPANY(Ukraine), Ergo Hesta S.A. (Poland).

Recognitions 2022/2023

In 2022 Dictio received an award in the nomination Real Estate Law Firm 2022 UKRAINIAN SPECIAL BUILDING AWARDS IBUILD 2022.  In 2023 Dictio received an award in the nomination Real Estate Law Firm 2023 UKRAINIAN SPECIAL BUILDING AWARDS IBUILD 2023.  In 2020, the company received the honorary Forbes Ukraine Audience Choice Award within the framework of business support project.

Social responsibility and activities  

During this wartime period in Ukraine Dictio’s lawyers have been involved in number of humanitarian pro bono projects supporting the August Mission foundation (American foundation which supplies humanitarian aid to Ukrainian hospitals, generators), Center of Excellence Foundation (focused on prosthetics for Ukrainians), Energy Act for Ukraine and others.

The full-scale invasion Russian of Ukraine has damaged and destroyed the country’s energy infrastructure. Rebuilding Ukraine will require a major effort on the part of all stakeholders. However, it brings an opportunity to build back a greener and more modern energy system. In December 2023 Dictio joined the Ukraine Energy Initiative – a cross-sector global coalition tasked with accelerating the recovery of Ukraine’s energy sector (supported by the United Nations Global Compact).  Dictio’s team actively promotes Ukraine on the international market and establishes cooperation between foreign and Ukrainian developers, construction companies, and organizations.

The firm’s lawyers participate in and speak at construction industry events in Ukraine and abroad, giving presentations and explaining the legal framework for doing construction business in Ukraine. In particular, since the beginning of the war, we have participated in Recovery Forum 2022/2023 (Kyiv), Housing Forum (Warsaw), BUILD4FUTURE Construction Forum (Poznan), Living Investment Forum 2023 (Warsaw), II Business & Legal Infrastructure Forum (Kyiv); professional meetings of ProfBuild, opening of the KIND office, PZPB events, presentations on Ukrainian legislation for trade missions of the Polish-Ukrainian Chamber of Commerce PUIG and AmCham, etc.), webinars for CBU “International and USA tenders for Ukrainian companies”; “Joint Ventures with foreign capital companies” etc. In 2023 Olena Shtohryn, Managing Partner of Dictio, was included by a committee of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine as an expert in the Working Group for the development of the Urban Planning Code of Ukraine.