On July 12, 2022, the Ministry of Agriculture issued Ordinary No. 637 (hereinafter “Ordinary“), by virtue of which the Agriculture and Livestock Service (hereinafter “SAG”) was instructed to suspend the certification of Rural Land Subdivision projects (hereinafter “SPR”), in those situations in which a possible change in the destination of the lots resulting from such subdivisions may be noticed, in order to avoid negative externalities caused by an unplanned urbanization and thus preserve the rural land so that it may continue to fulfill the agricultural purpose that corresponds to it.
In order to comply with the aforementioned objectives, SAG was instructed by means of the Ordinary to suspend the processing of the evaluation of an SPR when it notices a possibility of a change of land use, and in these situations to request reports from the following public services:
• To the corresponding SEREMI of MINVU, in order to ensure that potential subdivisions do not give rise to new urban centers.
• To CONAF, in the event that there is a native forest or sclerophyllous vegetation or the property is qualified as forest aptitude.
• Eventually, to the Subdirección de Agua Potable Rural de la Dirección de Obras Hidráulicas del MOP, in order to determine the impact of the subdivision on the drinking water supply.
• Finally, the Ordinary instructs to request any other report to the public services it deems pertinent.
Subsequently, and in accordance with the aforementioned Ordinary, on July 18, 2022, Circular No. 475 of 2022 (hereinafter the “Circular”) was issued by the Ministry of Agriculture, through the National Director of the Agriculture and Livestock Service Central Office, which establishes complementary criteria for the review of applications for the Subdivision of Rural Land. The purpose of this Circular is to allow the SAG Regional Directorates to suspend or reject the SPR certification submitted to them based on these criteria.
The Circular indicates different cases that merit suspension or rejection of the project certification process. These hypotheses are classified in 2 classes. First, generic cases of suspension, when, for example, there is a complaint from an individual or other Public Services regarding an SPR project that violates the regulations; and, second, it establishes 12 specific cases of suspension or rejection, for which the Circular orders specific actions of suspension and requirement of information or rejection of the SPR certification. Within these cases, we can highlight the following subdivisions:
I) Include in the plan elements typical of a condominium.
II) Contemplate a project design that is incompatible with the agricultural, livestock or forestry use of the resulting lots.
III) Result in plots of 5,000 m2 or more, which present an offer to the public in social networks, real estate portals, or other elements that allow attributing characteristics of an urban or housing destination.
IV) Consider the generation of 80 or more lots.
V) Consider in their design the habilitation of roads on forest surface.
VI) Correspond to the development of new stages of previous projects, consolidated with real estate destination.
VII) Presented by an owner whose business is linked to the following economic activities: construction of buildings for residential use, purchase, sale and rental; and/or its corporate purpose is mainly real estate.
VIII) That they are located in Indigenous Development Areas or are included in CONADI’s Indigenous Land Registry.