According to the information that RERI obtained from the Institute for Nature Conservation of Voivodina Province, neither the City Administration of City of Zrenjanin nor competent authorities within the Autonomous Province of Vojvodina refered to this Institute, despite the explicit legal obligation to obtain nature conservation conditions for the construction of the tire factory of the investor Linglong International Europe d.o.o.
Linglong had an obligation to obtain the conditions for nature conservation from the Institute for Nature Conservation of Vojvodina Province in the procedure of issuing the location conditions, which are an integral part of the construction permit, as well as in the environmental impact assessment procedure, which they did not do. On the other hand, if the investor had failed to submit those conditions, the authority conducting the procedure was obliged to obtain them in the prescribed procedure. The competent authorities did not do that, and thus acted contrary to the provisions contained in the Law on Nature Conservation, the Law on Environmental Impact Assessment and the Law on Planning and Construction.
The public presentation, which was supposed to take place on September 4, marked the prevention of the gathered citizens to attend public presentation by the City Administration of the City of Zrenjanin. In this manner, the public was denied the right to hear both the responses of the study developer and the comments and remarks of each person who submitted them. To the citizens who submitted their comments, including RERI, the developer of the study subsequently, contrary to legal procedures, responded in writing, stating, among other things, false claims that all competent authorities were contacted through the unified procedure, and that the Institute for Nature Conservation of Vojvodina Province did not respond with the necessary conditions.
So far, ten (10) construction permits have been issued illegally and three (3) environmental impact assessment procedures have been initiated without the conditions of the Institute. The conditions to which Linglong is referring are the conditions issued by the Institute for the purpose of drafting the Detailed Regulation Plan of the work zone “Jugoistok II – A”, which cannot be used for the purpose of tire factory construction, since the Institute needs to issue special conditions for all works and facilities which are not included in the project documentation.
In addition, the City Administration of Zrenjanin requested forty days for answering to RERI’s simple question – whether they addressed the Institute requesting the nature conservation conditions?
RERI has repeatedly pointed to the irregularities in the procedure of issuing construction permits and impact assessment procedures, and therefore filed twelve (12) appeals against the decisions of the competent authorities and initiated three (3) administrative court proceedings requesting the annulment of illegal decisions.
Why nature conservation conditions are important?
The conditions of the Institute are obtained when the investor uses natural resources, performs construction and other works, activities and interventions that may have a negative impact on nature, especially on the status of biodiversity in protected areas, habitats of protected and strictly protected species. The conditions of the Institute are especially important considering that only 2 km from the location where the construction of the tire factory is planned a special nature reserve Carska bara is located, which is a protected area of the first category of international, national or exceptional importance, and is a habitat of 239 species of birds, of which 207 represent a strictly protected species.
RERI, again, draws the attention of the competent authorities and the entire public to the fact that the construction of the tire factory in Zrenjanin is being carried out with yet unnoticed illegalities and abuse of public authority, violating the entire legal order of the Republic of Serbia.