Benefits and challenges of agricultural land investment in Tanzania and Mozambique (ELDIS)

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Land investments or land grab?: a critical view from Tanzania and Mozambique

Authors: H. Theting; B. Brekke
Publisher: Development Fund, Norway, 2010

This report discusses the potential benefits of, and the current challenges for, agricultural land investment in Tanzania and Mozambique. The paper finds that there is little, if any, development potential in these investments. Indeed, the economic growth potential of investments in agricultural land is questionable due to an inadequate regulatory framework governing foreign direct investments (FDI) in the sector.

The document shows that FDI in agricultural sector in Tanzania and Mozambique can even jeopardise local resource users land rights. In this respect, the report highlights that farmers are giving away their most valuable assets to profit-seeking entities, based on information asymmetries and persuasion. The paper argues that this is not development, but it is land grabbing. In addition, the authors doubt whether the FDI projects analysed in the paper will spur significant developmental effects at the local level.

The report introduces the following policy recommendations:



Published by

Willem Van Cotthem

Honorary Professor of Botany, University of Ghent (Belgium). Scientific Consultant for Desertification and Sustainable Development.