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Tuesday, June 25, 2024

Land reform invoice ‘should ship stability’ between landlords and tenants

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Scottish farm leaders have referred to as for a brand new land reform invoice to ship stability between the rights of tenants and landlords in Scotland.

The Scottish authorities’s new Land Reform (Scotland) Invoice proposes a raft of modifications affecting the possession and letting of land in Scotland.

Massive landholdings of over 1,000 hectares characterize greater than 50% of Scotland’s land.

The laws pertains to these, similar to administration and switch of possession, in addition to to the leasing of land and the availability of agricultural tenancies.

The invoice is at the moment at stage 1 within the parliamentary course of, with farming teams giving proof at the moment (25 June) to the Internet Zero, Vitality and Transport (NZET) committee.

In its proof, NFU Scotland careworn the necessity for stability between the rights of landlords and tenants, urging the Scottish authorities to not implement provisions that would introduce extra complexity to the difficulty.

The union additionally highlighted the necessity to contemplate the supply of land for future letting by the subsequent technology of Scottish farmers.

Talking after the proof session, NFU Scotland’s head of coverage Gemma Cooper mentioned the union believes in a ‘wholesome and vibrant’ tenanted sector.

She mentioned: “A key level for NFU Scotland is that permit land is a crucial entry level for the subsequent technology of farmers however the quantity of it out there to those that wish to get a begin in our business continues to say no. That have to be tackled.

“A lot of the invoice is focussed on addressing points round safe tenancies and this is a vital step ahead for tenants and landlords concerned in a lot of these settlement.

“We additionally took the chance to precise concern that a number of the proposals, as drafted, don’t have the proper stability or readability.”

Ms Cooper mentioned the union believes that workable options could be achieved if the Scottish authorities works with stakeholders via the Tenant Farming Advisory Discussion board (TFAF).

“The fitting stability on provisions similar to this shall be vital to make sure that let land is out there sooner or later,” she concluded.

The invoice additionally seeks to present communities extra alternatives to personal land via introducing advance discover of sure gross sales from massive landholdings.

Authorized obligations shall be positioned on massive landowners to point out how they use their land and the way that use contributes to coverage priorities, similar to addressing local weather change.

These landowners must interact with native communities about how they use the land, the Scottish authorities mentioned.

And the invoice consists of quite a few measures to reform tenant farming and small landholding laws.

Rural Affairs Secretary Mairi Gougeon mentioned the laws would enable the advantages and alternatives of Scotland’s land to be extra broadly shared.

“We don’t assume it’s proper that possession and management of a lot of Scotland’s land continues to be within the fingers of comparatively few folks,” she mentioned.

“We wish to be a nation the place rights and obligations in relation to land and its pure capital are absolutely recognised and fulfilled.

“Too typically, folks and communities really feel powerless when the land they reside on is offered with no prior warning – this invoice will assist to alter that.”


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