Africa’s land rush – what do we really know?

March 2021
Oxfam (Wytske Chamberlain) and Wegayehu Fitawek (Land Matrix Africa)

This article argues that while we know that the demand for land and natural resources has significantly accelerated in the last decade, it remains very difficult to gauge the exact size of the land rush. Many studies that look into how much land is affected give vastly diverging numbers. Local elites and diaspora investors are known for controlling large areas in their home countries and their activities tend to be even less transparent than those of international investors. Many studies choose not to include domestic investors. Contracts are considered highly confidential and land registration systems are not publicly accessible.