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Too many gaps in new land interests register, MSPs claim
Much of Scotland’s land will remain outside the proposed Register of Controlled Interests in Land, whose purpose is to make landownership more transparent, according to a report by Holyrood's Environment, Climate Change & Land Reform Committee.
Reporting on draft regulations to establish the new register, the MSPs also state that there could be gaps or loopholes in the register, as the proposals currently rely on multiple registers and exclude information already in the public domain.
They urge the Scottish Government to reconsider its approach, claiming that if the register is to meet the aspiration of a transparent and accessible system, all the information should be accessible in a simple and straightforward way. The committee wants an assurance that all the information will be accessed via a single point and free to use.
Convener Gillian Martin MSP commented: "The committee was very clear in its conclusions. There should be transparency over who owns Scotland’s land, who takes decisions over its management and who benefits from its ownership.
"However, in looking at the proposed register there are a number of areas of concern. We need to ensure the information on those who have control over land is transparent, easy to use and the information is available in one place.
"We are therefore calling on the Scottish Government to address these issues when they finalise the detail of their proposals."
Click here to view the committee's report.