The Scramble for Land Rights. Reducing Inequality between Communities and Companies

July 2018
World Resources Institute

Indigenous and community lands, crucial for rural livelihoods, are typically held under informal customary arrangements. This can leave the land vulnerable to outside commercial interests, so communities may seek to formalize their land rights in a government registry and obtain an official land document. But this process is often time-consuming, complex and costly and, in contrast, companies can acquire land relatively quickly and find short-cuts around regulatory burdens. Report maps these inequities in 15 countries (including Cameroon, Ivory Coast, Mozambique, Tanzania and Uganda) and offers recommendations on how to level the playing field.