FOs role in Land tenure
Thursday, January 26, 2012
The study of the HLPE was to undertake analysis and formulate policy recommendations in the following three areas:
- (i) the respective roles of large-scale plantations and of small-scale farming, including economic, social, gender and environmental impacts;
- (ii) review of the existing tools allowing the mapping of available land; and
- (iii) comparative analysis of tools to align large scale investments with country food security strategies.
One of their conclusions is that “Smallholders need better access to banks, insurers, law firms, courts etc. They also need information: about market trends, how product prices, royalties and dividends are calculated, the level of risk involved, how much debt they are taking on, and what legal protection they have.”
Their recommendations are as follow:
Host country governments Governments should prioritize investment in the small farm sector and in alternative food syst ems that are socially inclusive and just as well as environmentally sustainable, using agroecological principles. Support for farmer voice and civil society. Increased support is needed for farmer representation through their own organizations, with priority to social movements of the rural poor: small farmers, landless labourers, women, indigenous peoples and ethnic minorities, pastoralists and forest dwellers. Other civil society organizations who support the direct representatives of the rural poor should also be provided the needed institutional space. The rural poor‘s social movement organizations and relevant CSOs need to acquire stronger political weight in national and international decision-making structures. These organisations need backing at country level and internationally to ensure effective scrutiny and accountability of both national and international processes.
Donor governments Donors should align more effectively their bilateral and multilateral initiatives in the field of agricultural investment promotion, to achieve positive outcomes for local farmers. For example, some donors argue that improving productivity and market access for smallholder farming is key to achieving the MDGs while multilateral lenders have been promoting and financing inward investment, including large-scale land acquisitions. Donors should also ensure fulfillment of the G8 and G20 commitments on increased funding support to agriculture made over the last 2 years. This should include support for public infrastructure and policy development to create an enabling environment for smallholder agriculture – based on evidence showing that smallholders can be highly dynamic and competitive on global markets, and that small farm development is feasible and desirable for its impacts on poverty reduction.
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