News & Analysis

Croatia continues to improve time-consuming real estate registration procedures

The World Bank approved a new loan to Croatia on August 1, intended for the Integrated Land Administration System Project (ILAS) in the amount of 19.7 million euros. This provides additional funding to an ongoing, well performing project lead by the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) and the State Geodetic Administration (SGA).

The loan will help modernise Croatia’s land administration and management system to improve the efficiency, transparency and cost effectiveness of government services to the benefit of the public, businesses and government institutions.

Under the ongoing project, the average time to register mortgages and real property transactions decreased significantly from 46 days to 12 days in Land Registry Offices (LROs) and from 30 to 8 days in Cadaster Offices (COs), Croatia’s Doing Business ranking in the ease of registering property improved from a place of 111 to 59, on a scale of 190 economies, and the very first e-services for land administration were introduced.

One of the greatest achievements under the project was the November 2016 roll out of the Joint Information System (JIS) to all LROs and COs. The JIS is a fully centralised web-based system, interoperable with the personal identification register, address register, business register and tax authority register, linked to the LROs’ and COs’ digital archives. It also includes e-signature and e-payment functionalities and provides several e-services for key external users. Currently 28 ministries and agencies are sharing spatial data with the SGA and MoJ and this number will further increase.

“Croatia’s land administration system has undergone a profound transformation over the last decade. Yet significant investments are still necessary to move to a more efficient, paperless and less costly system, and to further expand the government’s e-services agenda under which all digital services are to be expanded, unified and more accessible to the citizens,” said Elisabetta Capannelli, World Bank country manager for Croatia and Slovenia. “A modern and efficient land administration system contributes to entrepreneurship development, strengthening Croatia’s competitiveness and improving the efficiency of the public sector and we look forward to continue supporting this transformation process.”

This project will improve the land administration to promote legal security in real estate transactions, with a positive impact on Croatia’s investment climate. It will also help the MoJ and SGA fully prepare projects for future EU financing. It will support the continued automation of land administration services, reduce registration time, improve the quality of real property data and advance the integration of cadaster and land registration services.

The JIS’s capacity will be expanded to increase electronic and online services, shift towards paperless offices, increase the speed of service delivery, and overcome the systemic delays in the major LROs standardizing services provided across the country. Improved access to geo-spatial information is also expected to benefit the business community, which will have access to faster services and increased access to information. Spatial data organization will also benefit government institutions, which will have accessible, accurate, well-maintained and sufficiently reliable data at their disposal.