16 September 2011 Public Hearing on the Public Property Bill held at the National Assembly House

16 September 2011 Public Hearing on the Public Property Bill held at the National Assembly House

Friday, 16 September 2011

Public Hearing on Public Property Bill Held

On 16 September, at the National Assembly House, the Finance Committee and European Integrations Committee organised a public hearing on the Public Property Bill.


The participants, members of parliament, representatives of the submitter of the Bill, expert public and civil sector were greeted by Finance Committee Deputy Chairperson Branka Ljiljak.

Opening the gathering, National Assembly Speaker Prof. Dr Slavica Djukic-Dejanovic stressed that the adoption of the Public Property Bill and the Bill on Property Restitution and Compensation shall be a big step closer to the European Union. She stressed that it is the first distinct Bill to comprehensively regulate the institute of private property, adding that it complies with the European Charter of Local Self-Government.

The National Assembly Speaker expressed her belief that the transference of a part of its authority from the republican level to the province and local self-government will improve their development, adding that the job does not end with the adoption of the Bill but calls for its implementation.

Serbian Deputy Prime Minister Bozidar Djelic stressed that the new law on public property represents a strong lever for the reform of the public sector which clearly identifies the bearers of property rights both state, provincial and municipal i.e. city. The new law will make it clear what belongs to whom in Serbia and stimulate the spirit of decentralisation, said Deputy Prime Minister Djelic. He said that the law would not endanger the restitution because property rights cannot be transferred if said property is demanded by its previous owners.

Deputy Prime Minister Djelic announced that the Government is preparing amendments to the Public Property Bill, at the proposal of the AP Vojvodina Executive Council. These amendments should enable a coherent management and maintenance of the network of public roads. According to these proposals, local self-government would be responsible for maintaining streets, squares, parks and municipal roads, second-rate state roads would be owned by the province, while first-rate state roads and highways would be owned by the Republic. The canal network, except for waterways, will be owned by Vojvodina, said the Serbian Deputy Prime Minister.

Zlatko Stefanovic, professor at UNION Faculty of Law, pointed out that the new law would finally resolve the property relations between the state, province and local self-government. On the behalf of the Standing Conference of Towns and Municipalities, Zoran Alimpic commended the adoption of the Public Property Bill.

AP Vojvodina Assembly Speaker Sandor Egeresi expressed his expectation that the submitter of the Bill would take into consideration the interests of the citizens, local self-government, province and Republic. AP Vojvodina Government’s Vice President Ana Tomanova-Makanova urged that the Vojvodina Government’s amendments be included into the Bill and that the agreement between the Serbian Government and AP Vojvodina Executive Council be followed to the full.

The representatives of the Alliance of Vojvodina Hungarians at the Minorities’ Parliamentary Group announced their own amendments to the Public Property Bill and requested that part of the railway infrastructure be entrusted to Vojvodina.

The participants believe the adoption of the new law necessary not only because it is a pre-requisite for Serbia’s accession to the European Union, but also because of the need to regulate the public sector and enable it to function more efficiently. They made numerous objections and suggestions to the proposed solutions among which was the proposal to delay its adoption due to various insufficiencies. In the debate, it was suggested that the Bill should address the issue of endowments in Serbia.

The following representatives of civil society took part in the debate: Mile Antic from the Restitution Network, Zorka Marjanovic from the Commercial Fund, Dr Kosta Andrejevic from the Andrejevic Foundation and Milan Parivodic from the Foreign Investors Services.


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