Land policies are of fundamental importance to sustainable growth, good governance, and the well-being of, and the economic opportunities open to, both rural and urban dwellers - particularly the poor. To this end, research on land policy, and analysis of interventions related to the subject, have long been of interest to the Bank's Research Department, and other academic, and civil society institutions. The report aims to strengthen the effectiveness of land policy in support of development, and poverty reduction, by setting out the results of recent research in a way that is accessible to a wide audience of policymakers, nongovernmental organizations, academics in the Bank's client countries, donor agency officials, and the broader development community. Its main message rests on three principles: 1) provision of secure tenure to land improves the welfare of the poor, particularly by enhancing the asset base of those whose land rights are often neglected, and, creates incentives needed for investment, paramount to sustainable economic growth; 2) facilitation of land exchange, and distribution, whether as an asset or for current services, at low cost, through markets, and non-market channels, will expedite land access by productive, but land-poor producers, so that once economic growth improves, financial markets would rely on the use of land as collateral; and, 3) governments' contribution to the promotion of socially desirable land allocation, and utilization. The report discusses mechanisms to promote tenure security, demonstrates the importance of rental market transactions, arguing the removal of impediments to these can generate equity advantages, and positive investments. It also illustrates mechanisms, ranging from taxation, to regulation and land use planning to address these issues.
Authors and Publishers
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The purpose of the Mekong Land Research Forum online site is to provide structured access to published and unpublished research on land issues in the Mekong Region. It is based on the premise that debates and decisions around land governance can be enhanced by drawing on the considerable volume of research, documented experience and action-based reflection that is available.