25 Dec 2017 18:38

Irkutsk region's govt to tackle problem of Baikal land purchases by foreigners

IRKUTSK. Dec 25 (Interfax) - The government of the Irkutsk region has created a working group to solve the problem of massive purchases of land on the coast of Lake Baikal by citizens of foreign states, primarily those from China.

"This problem exists. Foreign citizens use various methods, even using mediators, to buy this land. Unfortunately, federal legislation does not really prevent that. We have to look for ways to stop that. To do that, a working group was created, which will began working on this track in early January 2018," the region's Governor Sergei Levchenko told reporters on Monday.

The land sites that are the most attractive to foreign buyers are located in the settlement of Listvyanka, which is "the tourist gate" of Baikal, and on the large Baikal island of Olkhon, the governor said.

According to earlier reports, the administration of the Irktusk region, to which Listvyanka belongs, has sent letters to the government of the Irkutsk region suggesting the creation of a special commission to inspect tourist facilities built in the environmental zone of Baikal with foreign capital.

According to the administration, there are currently some 20 land sites on the territory of the Irkutsk region where such facilities are being built or are expected to be built.

The commission is expected to comprise specialists from the regional directorates of Rospotrebnadzor and Rosprirodnadzor, state construction oversight services, migration services, and also officials from the Irktusk region's tourism agency, the administration of the Irkutsk district and the administration of Listvyanka.