Netanyahu: Lands Administration Reform Will Reduce Housing Prices

Housing Minister Atias: Promoting the reform will bring about a social and economical revolution.

"The [Israel Lands Administration] reform will enable the general public to become the owners of the apartments and houses that they live in, and will end the dependence on inefficient and burdensome Bureaucratic mechanisms," Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Monda after a ministerial committee approved the changes to the ILA.

"The reform will also reduce the price of land and, correspondingly, the prices of apartments, putting them within the price range of young couples and newly discharged soldiers," Netanyahu explained.

As part of the reform, the ownership of the land will be transferred to the lesees and the lands administration will no longer play a role in altering land designation, transfer of ownership and planning procedures relating to existing properties, a move which is expected to lighten the bureaucratic burden on citizens.

According to the government's plan, private entrepreneurs will be able to promote and approve building projects in areas where the planning process has still not been completed. Farmers will receive additional compensation for farmland that has been rezoned, and can themselves initiate plans to rezone the land. This will all be implemented through the expedited means of the Economic Arrangements Law, without consulting the public.

"Promoting the reform will bring about a social and economical revolution," emphasized Housing Minister Ariel Atias, adding that "The Western world has changed disks, creating models for land banks that are friendlier to the public and faster to adjust to the general market."

"The lands administration reform is the first in a series of important changes to be enacted within the field of housing and construction," he concluded.

Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz, one of the reform's architects, said that "[The reform] tackles a serious economic obstacle, the removal of which will create many opportunities for the citizens of the state, and the economy as a whole."