Assessing Effects of Large-Scale Land Transfers | Land Portal | Securing Land Rights Through Open Data

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Date of publication: 
September 2017
Resource Language: 
ISBN / Resource ID: 
handle:10986/28378
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Copyright details: 
World Bank

This study uses data from the complete computerization of agricultural leases in Malawi, a georeferenced farm survey, and satellite imagery to document the opportunities and challenges of land-based investment in novel ways. Although 1.5 million hectares, or 25 percent, of Malawi's agricultural area is under agricultural estates, analysis shows that 70 percent has expired leases and 140,000 hectares are subject to overlapping claims. This reduces revenue from ground rent by up to US$35 millon per year or 5 percent of public spending and, by decreasing tenure security, may affect the productivity of land use. Indeed a 2006/07 survey shows large farms underperforming small ones in yield, productivity, and intensity of land use, while failing to generate positive spillovers. Recently passed Land Acts create opportunities to clarify the boundaries and lease status for existing estates as a first step toward systematic demarcation of customary estates. Failure to follow this sequence could exacerbate insecurity, with undesirable effects on productive performance.

Authors and Publishers

Author(s), editor(s), contributor(s): 
Deininger, Klaus Xia, Fang
Publisher(s): 

The World Bank is a vital source of financial and technical assistance to developing countries around the world. We are not a bank in the ordinary sense but a unique partnership to reduce poverty and support development.

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The World Bank is a vital source of financial and technical assistance to developing countries around the world. We are not a bank in the ordinary sense but a unique partnership to reduce poverty and support development.

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