- Hans Weber
- December 1, 2023
Czech State To Audit Property Holdings In Order To Transfer Some To Municipalities
The Czech state is planning to conduct a comprehensive audit of its publicly-owned real estate assets in order to determine which of these assets are not needed and could be transferred to local or regional authorities. According to Katerina Arajmu, the head of the Office for Government Representation in Property Affairs (UZSVM), the state currently owns around 1.5 million immovable assets across more than 500 state bodies. A recent change now means that all state-owned immovable properties can be found on the UZSVM website.
Finance Minister Zbynek Stanjura has said that the extent to which these properties are actually needed by the state bodies is unknown, and as a result, it is difficult to estimate how many assets are not needed and the potential savings that could be made by not having to maintain them. If these properties were transferred to the municipalities, it could help them to carry out projects more quickly and efficiently, such as building public housing or creating cycling routes.
The state has been trying to carry out an audit of its property holdings since 2015, and UZSVM plans to send state institutions a list of their registered properties by the end of February. By August, the institutions are expected to explain whether they actually need these properties or not.
Frantisek Lukl, head of the Association of Towns and Municipalities, has said that local government bodies would welcome the opportunity to take over some of these properties, as many investment projects are concerned with state property. He said that the process of acquiring these properties was not always fast or easy, but he welcomes the partnership attitude that is now being shown and hopes it will speed up the process. He added that investment projects typically include sewage systems, cycle routes, and roads that cross several different owners’ lands.
In conclusion, the Czech state’s plan to conduct an audit of its publicly-owned real estate assets and transfer those that are not needed to local or regional authorities is a positive step that could lead to significant cost savings and help local governments to carry out projects more efficiently. The cooperation between the state and local government bodies is also a positive sign that could lead to further partnerships in the future.
Article by Prague Forum