Croatia Ready to Legislate for Hydrocarbon Exploration
The government of Croatia has prepared legislation, now before the national parliament, to regulate hydrocarbon exploration. Establishment of a new hydrocarbons mining agency is one of its key features.
A bill on hydrocarbons exploration and exploitation was forwarded to the parliament at the end of last week. Its aim is to facilitate the obtaining of concessions and improve legal security and flexibility in oil and gas investment projects, the HINA news agency reported.
According to the Budapest Business Journal, the passage of such a law is a novelty in Croatian legislation. The current Mining Act, now seen as restrictive, regulates the exploration of all mineral reserves, including hydrocarbons.
The government believes a new law is necessary because of the increasing interest among foreign investors. Economy Minister Ivan Vrdoljak said the most important aspect of the bill was the introduction of a single procedure for issuing a permit, signing a contract and directly obtaining a concession.
Vrdoljak said the new law would give Croatia an opportunity to exploit its resources in accordance with the highest business and ecological standards.
He said the law would enable an investor considering a project on state or private land with a simple procedure to solve property rights relations. These would ensure the investor was obliged to respect environmental, health and safety standards.