Land policy

Land reform under structural adjustment in Zimbabwe : land use change in the Mashonaland provinces

Upphovsperson: Moyo, Sam
Utgivare: Nordiska Afrikainstitutet | Uppsala : Nordiska Afrikainstitutet
År: 2000
Ämnesord: Mashonaland, Zimbabwe, Southern Africa, Land policy, Land reform, Land use, Structural adjustment, Political science, Statsvetenskap
This report examines the role of economic liberalisation in the reconstruction of the political economy of Zimbabwe's land question. Since the Economic Structural Adjustment Programme (ESAP) was introduced in 1990, the universe of policies surrounding and influencing the nature and scale of land reform has been changing in tandem with changing and varied supply responses to ESAP-related policy incentives within Zimbabwe's bi-modal agrarian structure. These responses are manifested in emerging new land use patterns and production processes oriented towards global markets. The growth of new export oriented land uses are a key determinant of the changing land question through their salient influence on transforming the structural and technological parameters of land use and the exchange values of land, and, therefore, of land ownership. Unequal benefits from ESAP reforms, especially from new land uses, however, fuel the struggle for more land redistribution. Thus a major result of these land use shifts is the changing organisation of the politics of landholders and land seekers, especially in their relations to the state, reflecting renewed struggle among various constituencies for historical and normative land rights against those seeking to preserve existing land rights in the context of an increasingly market-based land policy framework. A case study approach focusing on horticulture, wildlife and ostrich land uses, their economic features and impacts, and their socio-political ramifications was pursued between 1995 and 1997. Detailed case data and experiences were garnered from Zimbabwe's Mashonaland provinces and numerous secondary sources from the macro to the farmer and household level. The study assesses the direction and scale of these new rural land uses in Zimbabwe's prime lands with particular emphasis on the 1990-1996 period. It traces the new forms of land use in relation to emerging land bidding and ownership structures/ social relations of production among large scale and small farmers, private agrarian market agents, and the state itself. The emergence of new forms of rural land and commodity markets, new trends in socio-political organisation and policy advocacy among farmers' groups and other interest groups, as well as the changing relationship of government agencies to the control and use of land and commodity production, were the main social processes and relations examined.