Logical and Transparent Institutionalization of the Ownership and the Owner's representativeness in the land related legislation under the comprehensive, thorough and unified leadership of the Communist Party of Vietnam
“The National Assembly is the highest representative body of the People, the highest organ of State power of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam”- Representative of the Land Ownership, Article 69 and Article 53 of the 2013 Constitution
This submission proposes to clarify the rights and responsibilities of the State with respect to land to ensure compliance with the 2013 Constitution. The latter stipulates that land and land resources are owned by the entire people and managed by the State on behalf of the owners. Therefore, in order to comply with the Constitution, the state agency representing land owners must be the highest representative state agency, i.e., the National Assembly, not the Government. Also, as land is a ‘special’ natural resource, it must have a ‘special’ legal provision. The current legislation must therefore be amended to express the special nature of land and shift the State agency representing land owners from the Government to the National Assembly.
Land law 2013 should be amended to overcome contradictions, firstly, between the entire people’s ownership of the land and the ‘private’ ownership of particular land plots, and secondly, between the value of land use rights and the use value of each land plot. The present ambiguity in the law, and the cancellation of Article 25 of Land Law No. 13/2003/QH11 on Communal Land Planning is resulting in corruption and land speculation. Productive village land is being bought up cheaply by outsiders and held for speculative gain from improvements paid for by the People. This is robbing the nation of productive land and the benefits of improvement, and stealing the livelihood of farmers. To prevent this, Land Law 2013 must be amended to restore Article 25 of Land Law 2003.
Article 27 of the Land Law No.45/QH13/2013 concerning the responsibility of the State for agricultural land of ethnic minorities must also be amended. The current provision is too general and is resulting in ethnic minority land is being acquired by the Kinh majority and mining and hydropower companies. As a result, ethnic minorities are losing their living space. Policies for the protection of ethnic minority land must be worked out in accordance with their own customs and practices, cultural identity, and the actual conditions of each region. Community ownership of land must be preserved. Also, to ensure spiritual interest of ethnic minorities, Article 160 of the 2013 Land Law should be redefined to synchronize with Forest law 2017 on religious forests, streams, waterfalls, and mountain peaks, etc.