Investment required to secure access to water is often beyond the reach of smallholder farmers

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Land access for Senegal’s small producers under threat

Read the full article: IIED

Senegal currently has a complex and poorly regulated system of land governance, which — combined with an urbanisation trend and increasing outsider interest — is leading to land privatisation and a consequent reduction in the availability of cultivable land for small producers. Young farmers in particular are struggling to gain sufficient access to land to maintain viable enterprises. Here we draw on field research to understand the drivers and impacts of trends in land use and ownership in rural Senegal, and suggest that government-backed land reform offers the best immediate chance of addressing the power imbalances that threaten rural livelihoods.

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Published by

Willem Van Cotthem

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