Judgment concerning Romania

Human Rights building in winter

In the case of Associations of Communally-owned Forestry Proprietors Porceni Pleșa and Piciorul Bătrân Banciu (Obștea de Pădure Porceni Pleșa și Composesoratul Piciorul Bătrân Banciu) v. Romania the Court held that there had been a violation of the protection of property.

The case concerned two associations of forestry proprietors who complained that, in spite of a legally recognised right, they had not received compensation for the fact that they were unable to make use of their forests, since the forests in question had been designated as protected natural areas for the purposes of the European Natura 2000 network.

The Court noted that to date, more than a decade after the European Commission’s decision in favour of granting State aid to individuals or legal entities which owned forestry land within the designated Natura 2000 areas, the draft decision defining the methodology for granting State compensatory measures had still not been published and no payment had been made to the first applicant association in respect of 2013, or to the second applicant association in respect of the period from 2010 to 2014. Although they were subject to the legal ban on using their forests, a result of the classification of the relevant forestry land as protected natural areas, the applicant associations had, at their own expense, complied with the obligation to maintain them.

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