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Registering Property in

Eritrea

Below is a detailed summary of the steps, time and cost involved in registering property in Eritrea. It assumes a standardized case of an entrepreneur who wants to purchase land and a building that is already registered and free of title dispute.

This information was collected as part of the Doing Business project, which measures and compares regulations relevant to the life cycle of a small- to medium-sized domestic business in 190 economies. The most recent round of data collection was completed in June 2016.

Compare Eritrea to 189 other economies.

  • Measure of efficiency
    No. Procedure Time to Complete Associated Costs
    1

    Obtain tax clearance from Inland Revenue

    Agency: Inland Revenue

    There are no costs involved unless there are unpaid taxes for the concerned building and other buildings owned by the owner.

    7 days (simultaneous with Procedures 2, 3, 4 & 5) 15 ERN
    * 2

    Tax clearance from Commercial bank

    Agency: Commercial Bank of Eritrea

    1 day (simultaneous with Procedures 1, 3, 4 & 5) 50 ERN
    * 3

    Tax clearance from the bank for unpaid loans from housing and commercial bank

    Agency: Housing and commercial bank

    1 day (simultaneous with Procedures 1, 2, 4 & 5) 20 ERN
    * 4

    Tax clearance from Municipality

    Agency: Municipality

    1 day (simultaneous with Procedures 1, 2, 3 & 5) 25 ERN (1-5 days); 50 ERN (express 1 day)
    * 5

    Obtain mortgage clearance from Cadastral Office

    Agency: Cadastral Office

    The clearance secures that the property is free from any mortgage and pledge.

    1 day (simultaneous with Procedures 1, 2, 3 & 4) 15 ERN
    6

    Submit all registration documents and clearances to the Notary Public and define tax to be paid

    Agency: Notary public office

    The Public Notary examines all the documents thoroughly, with all the clearances and delivers the documents, particularly the previous survey plan, to the Department of Infrastructure for new plan (from the previous owner to the new owner).

    1 day no cost
    7

    Creates a map of land

    Agency: Dept. of Infrastructure

    The Department of Infrastructure prepares a map and ensures compliance with all building regulations. The Department of Infrastructure sends the new map to the Public Notary, and the Public Notary, based on the declared price of agreement or on the recorded value in the computer (database), orders the buyer or any beneficiary to pay 9% of property value.

    60 days no cost
    8

    Buyer pays tax at Municipality

    Agency: Municipality

    The buyer pays the necessary tax at the Municipality.

    1 day 5% for Municipality
    9

    Buyer pays tax at Inland Revenue

    Agency: Inland Revenue

    The buyer pays the necessary tax at the Inland Revenue.

    1 day 4% of property value as valuated by committee
    10

    The Public Notary approved the contract in front of the parties and two witnesses

    Agency: Notary public office

    The Public Notary reads the content of the contract in front of the parties and witnesses. All parties must give their own free will for the contract to be effective. The Notary duly monitors the documents particularly whether the transfer payment is fully paid or not, and sends all the relevant documents to the Cadastral Office.

    1 day included in the 9% of property value
    11

    Submit registration of title at the Cadastre

    Agency: Cadastral Office

    At this point in the process the buyer obtains full possession of the title. They give copies of the title to the Cadastre and the Municipality.

    7 days 150 ERN

    * Takes place simultaneously with previous procedure.

  • Measure of quality
    Answer Score
    Quality of the land administration index (0-30) 6.5
    Reliability of infrastructure index (0-8) 2.0
    What is the institution in charge of immovable property registration? Cadastral Office
    In what format are the majority of title or deed records kept in the largest business city—in a paper format or in a computerized format (scanned or fully digital)? Paper 0.0
    Is there an electronic database for checking for encumbrances (liens, mortgages, restrictions and the like)? No 0.0
    In what format are the majority of maps of land plots kept in the largest business city—in a paper format or in a computerized format (scanned or fully digital)? Paper 0.0
    Is there an electronic database for recording boundaries, checking plans and providing cadastral information (geographic information system)? No 0.0
    Is the information recorded by the immovable property registration agency and the cadastral or mapping agency kept in a single database, in different but linked databases or in separate databases? Different databases but linked 1.0
    Do the immovable property registration agency and cadastral or mapping agency use the same identification number for properties? Yes 1.0
    Transparency of information index (0–6) 0.0
    Who is able to obtain information on land ownership at the agency in charge of immovable property registration in the largest business city? Records are not publicly available 0.0
    Is the list of documents that are required to complete any type of property transaction made publicly available–and if so, how? Yes, in person 0.0
    Link for online access:
    Is the applicable fee schedule for any property transaction at the agency in charge of immovable property registration in the largest business city made publicly available–and if so, how? Yes, in person 0.0
    Link for online access:
    Does the agency in charge of immovable property registration commit to delivering a legally binding document that proves property ownership within a specific time frame–and if so, how does it communicate the service standard? No 0.0
    Link for online access:
    Is there a specific and separate mechanism for filing complaints about a problem that occurred at the agency in charge of immovable property registration? No 0.0
    Are there publicly available official statistics tracking the number of transactions at the immovable property registration agency? No 0.0
    Number of property transfers in the largest business city in 2015:
    Who is able to consult maps of land plots in the largest business city? Records are not publicly available 0.0
    Is the applicable fee schedule for accessing maps of land plots made publicly available—and if so, how? Yes, in person 0.0
    Link for online access:
    Does the cadastral or mapping agency commit to delivering an updated map within a specific time frame—and if so, how does it communicate the service standard? No 0.0
    Link for online access:
    Is there a specific and separate mechanism for filing complaints about a problem that occurred at the cadastral or mapping agency? No 0.0
    Geographic coverage index (0–8) 0.0
    Are all privately held land plots in the economy formally registered at the immovable property registry? No 0.0
    Are all privately held land plots in the largest business city formally registered at the immovable property registry? No 0.0
    Are all privately held land plots in the economy mapped? No 0.0
    Are all privately held land plots in the largest business city mapped? No 0.0
    Land dispute resolution index (0–8) 4.5
    Does the law require that all property sale transactions be registered at the immovable property registry to make them opposable to third parties? Yes 1.5
    Is the system of immovable property registration subject to a state or private guarantee? No 0.0
    Is there a specific compensation mechanism to cover for losses incurred by parties who engaged in good faith in a property transaction based on erroneous information certified by the immovable property registry? No 0.0
    Does the legal system require a control of legality of the documents necessary for a property transaction (e.g., checking the compliance of contracts with requirements of the law)? Yes 0.5
    If yes, who is responsible for checking the legality of the documents? Registrar; Notary.
    Does the legal system require verification of the identity of the parties to a property transaction? Yes 0.5
    If yes, who is responsible for verifying the identity of the parties? Registrar; Notary.
    Is there a national database to verify the accuracy of identity documents? No 0.0
    For a standard land dispute between two local businesses over tenure rights of a property worth 50 times gross national income (GNI) per capita and located in the largest business city, what court would be in charge of the case in the first instance? Regional Court/Zonal Court/Land Commission
    How long does it take on average to obtain a decision from the first-instance court for such a case (without appeal)? Between 1 and 2 years 2.0
    Are there any statistics on the number of land disputes in the first instance? No 0.0
    Number of land disputes in the largest business city in 2015:
    Equal access to property rights index (-2–0) 0.0
    Do unmarried men and unmarried women have equal ownership rights to property? Yes 0.0
    Do married men and married women have equal ownership rights to property? Yes 0.0