Assesses the process of rural land registration in Mozambique and the outcomes for poor and marginalised groups. The research finds that community land registration, under the 1997 land law, can strengthen community rights to use and benefit from their land in relation to outsider interests in land. However, intra-community and intra-household land rights are not addressed, since it is only community land boundaries which are registered. The relatively centralised and complex registration procedures means that smallholder farmers are heavily dependent on NGOs to facilitate the process, which raises issues of continuity and sustainability. Individual registration of land is possible too, but is mainly taken up by private investors and companies. There are some serious shortcomings in this process: community consultations, required by law, are often inadequate and there is little supervision to ensure that compulsory land development plans produced by investors are implemented in practice. These issues will need to be tackled in order to for rural land registration be really pro-poor in practice.This report forms part of a series of seven papers based on a research programme entitled “Securing Land Rights in Africa: Can land registration serve the poor?” led by IIED.
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