in post-Soviet countries have developed in vastly different ways since each state became entitled to choose its own method of regulating inland water ownership. This article analyzes the Russian Federation and selected post-Soviet states’ legal systems related to ownership of surface waters, and assesses the possibility of legal transactions of lakes and other land areas covered by surface water. The research initially centers on establishing whether lakes are owned by the state or by the county, if a lake can be subject to sale to a private person or enterprise and finally examines the different approaches of post-Soviet countries to their surface water use. In achieving these objectives, the article analyzes water law in the Russian Federation, Belarus, Ukraine and Kazakhstan. It then identifies how water ownership is regulated in these countries and compares this with United Nations assumptions of surface water ownership as a Sustainable Development Goal. Finally, the results establish that countries from the same “block” regulate water ownership similarly, and that combined regulations could enhance future implementation of international standards.
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