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PR 16/12
17 October 2012

International conference puts economic growth on the agenda

Speakers and delegates from around the world gathered in London to share their expertise and also to celebrate Land Registry’s 150th anniversary during the UNECE (United Nations Economic Commission for Europe) conference hosted by HM Land Registry on Thursday 11 and Friday 12 October. The theme of the conference was the role of land registration authorities in supporting global economic recovery.

Malcolm Dawson, Chief Land Registrar and Chief Executive said:

“Secure land tenure and property rights are essential for the stable economy of countries and effective land registration is the basis for long-term global economic growth. HM Land Registry’s 150 year history has contributed to one of the most vibrant and confident property markets in the world. However it’s not just about us, we need to work collaboratively with the lending community and the legal sector to stimulate economic growth. It is important that we do not impose solutions on the market but work with them to realise the benefits for all parties.”

Speakers such as Law Society Chief Executive Desmond Hudson and Olympic Delivery Authority Property Director Ralph Luck led discussions on subjects including how efficient land registration can help consumers and developers. The conference highlighted the central role that land registration institutions play in providing the confidence and security necessary for a functioning economy and providing confidence for the lending market.

Julie Barry, Head of Global Engagement, said:

“The conference demonstrated that all land registration authorities across the region are looking at similar issues around efficiency through technology and digitisation, open data and transparency, the need for common standards and security and counter fraud. Land Registry’s International Unit has assisted more than 60 countries in the past decade, and it is clear that by working together and sharing expertise we can find ways to tackle these and other challenges in the future.”

The conference was sponsored by Thomson Reuters.

More information about the conference:


Notes to editors

Interviews available with Malcolm Dawson, Chief Land Registrar and Chief Executive at Land Registry. To arrange, please contact 0300 0067543.

  1. As a government department established in 1862, executive agency and trading fund responsible to the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, Land Registry keeps and maintains the Land Register for England and Wales. The Land Register has been an open document since 1990.
  2. 15 October 2012 marks the 150th anniversary of Land Registry.
  3. When HMLR was first established the majority of the UK population lived in tenanted or tied property. The first Chief Land Registrar, Sir Charles Fortescue-Brickdale, believed that creating secure titles and simplifying and reducing the cost of land and property transfer would enable private ownership to become within the reach of many of the population.
  4. In 1925 only 14 per cent of the population lived in owner occupied property. Today around 66 per cent of the UK population are owner occupiers and more than 80 per cent of the land in England and Wales is registered.
  5. Land Registry today safeguards the ownership of many billions of pounds worth of property which enables buyers, sellers and lenders to have confidence in the property market underpinning the economy and generating revenue.
  6. For further information about Land Registry visit


Marion Shelley 0300 0067543, 07790 690297

Ronal Patel 0300 0067490

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