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Friday, April 20, 2018

The Global Land Sale

Since the spike in food prices in 2008,countries with a large population and food security concerns have begun to buy or lease land from economically weaker countries.

Written by Prashant Dixit | Published: October 13, 2013 12:57:47 am

Since the spike in food prices in 2008,countries with a large population and food security concerns have begun to buy or lease land from economically weaker countries. A study carried out in January this year by the FAO showed that between 0.75% and 1.75% of the world’s farmland is now being transferred from locals to foreign investors. Since 2000,an estimated 70.2 million hectares of agricultural land worldwide has been bought or leased by private or public investors. Here’s a look at a few of these deals.

UKRAINE

* China has bought 5 per cent of Ukraine’s soil-rich land (3 million hectares),roughly the size of Belgium

* Deal was struck in Sept 2013 between Ukraine’s KSG Agro and China’s Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps

* China will have access to the land for the next 50 years

SOUTH SUDAN

* In April 2012,Dallah al Baraka Group of Saudi Arabia bought 809,371 hectares of land

* More than 8 per cent of the country’s total land was secured by private interests in 2007-10

* South Korea,which imports 70 per cent of its grain,has acquired 1.7 million acres in Sudan to grow wheat

ETHIOPIA

* Has leased land to 36 countries

* This compounded the 2008 Ethiopian famine as produce never reached local markets

* Saudi Arabia invested $100 million to grow and export rice,wheat and barley on a 99-year-land lease

* Has leased out some 3.6 million hectares

MADAGASCAR

* South Korea’s Daewoo Logistics Corporation leased 1.3 million hectares (nearly half its arable land) for 99 years in 2008

* South Korea is using three quarters of the land to grow corn and the rest to produce palm oil

* The deal led to the then government being overthrown

CAMBODIA

* Has leased out more than 2 million hectares of land to agricultural companies since 2008

* This rapid sell-off of 73 per cent of arable land is alleged to have affected at least 400,000 people

AUSTRALIA

* Indonesia proposed to buy between 1 million and 1.5 million hectares of land in north Australia (Canberra)

* The deal could play a crucial role in the security of Indonesia’s beef supply

BUYERS

KIRIBATI

*The island nation has been hard hit by rising sea levels

* Sea water is contaminating their fresh water ponds and food crops

* Secured a $1.71 million deal for 15,000 tonnes of tuna per year with the European Union

* Kiribati has confirmed its plans to buy 6,000 acres in Fiji to ensure food security

USA

* Dominion Farms established its first farm on a 7,000 hectare piece of land in the Yala Swamp area in Kenya,which it obtained on a 25-year lease

CHINA

* Since 2007,China has acquired farmland in Southeast Asia and Africa

* Invested $20 billion in Kazakhstan in exchange for 70 per cent of the country’s natural resources

* Bought Australia’s biggest cotton farm in 2013

* Has over 2 million hectares of land abroad that it uses for agriculture

* China acquired land in Congo and Zambia for biofuel production

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