On April 8th 2019, President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi issued Law No. 17 of 2019 regulating reconciliation for construction violations which occur as a result of contradicting the provisions of Building Law No. 119 of 2008, in addition to prohibiting reconciliation in cases concerning construction safety violations.

The Reconciliation Law stipulates that a reconciliation request must be submitted within a period not exceeding six months from the enforcement date of the Executive Regulations of the law, to the competent administrative authority, after paying a maximum inspection fee of EGP 5000 in cash. The Executive Regulations then specified categories subject to this fee, whilst also adding 8 further cases of violations which are prohibited, namely:

  • Work that undermines construction safety
  • Infringement of established regulatory lines and legally established easements
  • Irregularities in buildings and structures with a distinctive architectural style
  • Exceeding the height restrictions prescribed by the Civil Aviation Authority, or exceeding the requirements of the State Defense Affairs authorities.
  • Buildings which encroach on State property.
  • Building on lands governed by the Antiquities Protection Law and the Nile River Protection Law;
  • Change of use for areas for which detailed plans have been issued by the Egyptian Administrative Authority;
  • Building outside the approved urban districts.

Furthermore, on December 31th 2020, the Official Gazette published the Prime Minister's Decision No. 2725 of 2020 which extends the period for accepting reconciliation requests submitted by the concerned parties to the competent administrative authority. In accordance with the provisions of Law No. 17 of 2019, after the expiration of the legally prescribed reconciliation period (6 months), End of March 2021 is the deadline for submitting applications.

As soon as the extension period ends, punitive procedures shall be enforced against violating construction, most notably the cutting off of facilities such as water, gas and electricity. Afterward, a committee will be formed within each neighborhood to discuss the fate of the property, be it demolition or another remedial act.

Finally, the Reconciliation Law represents an unprecedented development in Egyptian property legislation, as the state was keen to legalize the status of violations that could be resolved through reconciliation and paying fines. This would enable the state to obtain its rights from violators, meaning that they will not continue to be suspended without a pathway for legalization.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.