The mission and primary purpose of the European Land Registry Association may be described as: “the development and understanding of the role of land registration in real property and capital markets”.
In October 2004, a group of Land Registry organisations decided that the time was right to create a European Association to represent the interests of Land Registries in the EU. This initiative was supported by Mr Antonio Vitorino, the former Justice and Home Affairs Commissioner.
ELRA (European Land Registry Association) started off with 12 members; it now has 30 organizations representing the land registries of 22 Member States, and is still growing.
ELRA wants to underline the significance of Land Registries in Europe as juridical institutions and the scope of the effects of registration pronouncements as a fundamental tool for progress and change in the rule of law in the field of property and rights on immovables.
The primary purpose of ELRA is the development and understanding of the role of land registration in real property and capital markets. Equally, ELRA is fully committed to work on behalf of Land Registries in Europe in cooperating with the EU institutions.
It is known that the rules governing the Land Registration Systems are very closely related to those laws governing the property and real estate rights in every country. It is also known that these rights are rooted in the tradition of every system which therefore explains the assertion of the European treaties that “the Community law does not prejudge the Property System in every State”.
However, at the present moment in the evolution of the European Community Law, the European role of the Land Registration Systems can not be ignored, and so Land Registries are a fundamental tool for the good functioning of basic community freedoms, such as the freedom of movement of people and capital and the freedom of establishment.
Land Registries can also be a valuable instrument for the achievement of the goals of the environmental community policies and they can provide help to judicial cooperation in the EU providing a secure playing field in this matter when immovables are involved. Also, the Land Registry institutions play a significant part in the creation of a real European mortgage market.
In this context, ELRA wants to promote the mutual knowledge of the different Land Registry Systems throughout Europe as well as to lay the conditions for a profitable cooperation with the European institutions. This collaboration with the EU as by ELRA as the official representative body of the Land Registries in the European Union has been the main achievement of the Association to date and this has resulted in a grant from DG Justice to co-finance its activities in 2007.
We believe that Land Registries are a fundamental pillar of legal certainty and ELRA’s commitment is to ensure the transfer of this principal into Community Law.
ELRA Board of Directors
ELRA’s internal organisation includes the following organs:
- General Assembly
- Secretary General
The General Assembly is the reunion of all ELRA’s members acting collectively.
The General Assembly is the supreme body of ELRA and it has all powers vested to it by the Law and the Articles of Incorporation of the Association. An Annual General Meeting must be held at least once a year.
The ordinary governance of ELRA in the time between Annual General meetings of the Assembly is carried out by the following members of the Board:
The president is elected by the General Assembly for a two year, non-renewable term. He/she represents the Association before third parties, and is in charge of the administration of the Association, as well as the execution of the decisions taken by the General Assembly or the Board of Directors.
Mr. Alasdair Lewis is the current President of the Association.
- Secretary General:
The Secretary General is elected by the General Assembly for a two year, non-renewable term.
The Secretary General must, amongst other things, draft the Minutes of Agreements and keep the Organisation’s archives. He must file all legally required documents to the competent “Register of the Commercial Court” (“Greffe du Tribunal de Commerce”).
Mr. Jorge López is the current Secretary General of ELRA.
The Treasurer is elected by the General Assembly for a two year, non-renewable term.
The Treasurer must, amongst other things, keep the books up to date, file income tax returns, do all that’s necessary to pay off asset taxes and, if applicable, file the yearly accounts to the competent “Register of the Commercial Court” or the National Bank of Belgium.
Mr. Guido de Latte is the current Treasurer of the Association.
Mr. Jacques Vos and Mr. Mihai Taus have become administrators of the board for this session.