Large-Scale Land Acquisitions: Exploring the Marginal Lands Narrative in the Chitemene System of Zambia
Zambia is a country embracing (and facilitating) large-scale foreign investments in agriculture as a pathway to economic development. Yet to date no systematic studies on the costs and benefits of such investments for customary land users have been conducted. This paper aims to fill that gap with a case study in Mpika District, Northern Province. We analyze the income households derive from shifting agricultural plots (chitemene), permanent cropland and other land uses in 3 villages falling within a leasehold concession acquired by a foreign company interested in jatropha cultivation, and compare that with the income derived from employment. We then take a scenario approach. Our findings suggest that the ultimate livelihood effects will depend a great deal on the patterns of corporate occupation of land; the extent to which displaced households are able to capture the economic opportunities that emerge and the particularities of household livelihood strategies and local landscapes.
Volume (Year): (2013)
Issue (Month): 2 (June)
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