5 ways to re-think land grabs


The Water Channel

5 Ways to Re-think Land Grabs

Our conception of land-grabs and global discussions on the phenomenon are a bit too ‘Africanized.’ They are informed too much by contentious, large-scale land deals in Africa and too little by examples from other regions (such as Latin America). This has led to many unfounded assumptions about the nature of land-grab.

For example, we tend to focus mostly on foreign businesses as the perpetrators, while Latin America is rife with examples of regional/ national companies engaging in such deals. Examples from the region also demonstrate the role of multi-use ‘flex-crops’ in drawing up policy-level justifications for such deals.

In this short interview, Dr. Saturnino (Jun) Borras fleshes out 5 such perspectives from which land-grabbing could be viewed afresh. And perhaps understood better.

Link to the interview on TheWaterChannel: http://thewaterchannel.tv/media-gallery/2725-5-ways-to-re-think-land-grabs

Original source: TheWaterChannel


  1. Muchiwa Mapondera
    14 Jun 2012

    I only wish that the group that opposes agricultural development (and retreats conveniently into the zone of land-grab sloganeering) would offer up something really practical and workable to lift the rural poor out of poverty. This crowd have had a free run in so-called "development" circles for about 50 years - and achieved little or nothing. Now that something productive is finally happening they have had to redefine a role for themselves in opposition. How sad.

  2. Diana Rickard
    13 Jun 2012

    A thought-provoking interview - clear and concise. In northern Australia the 'frontier' tends to be Indigenous land. It is tenured under the Land Rights Act as absolute land title but this was changed by the neo-conservative Howard government and weakened even further by the current Labor government. Other Australian land title holders do not have absolute title. With Land Right Act changes, Indigenous landholders now suffer enforced 'leases' - privatised and individualised. This goes against traditional communal custodianship of Country. The 1950's concept of 'turning the tropical rivers' to flow to more drought-prone areas has once again reared its ugly head. Agribusiness and 'becoming the food bowl of Asia' implies damming wild river systems. It also further impoverishes Indigenous peoples and destroys Country and community spirit. Land grabs - whatever the scale - are unsustainable economic programs that have no respect for social/cultural or environmental needs. As peak oil approaches, participatory democracy retreats. GM crops for multi-use and political double-speak on feeding the world are centred around government regulation and funding to those who already own the majority of global capital. There is no conscience or forward thinking involved.

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