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Action On Land Grabs

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Following the busiest 12 months in the history of neo-colonial land-grabs, the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) has taken the first steps towards regulating takeovers of agricultural land by foreign governments and corporations.

Following the busiest 12 months in the history of neo-colonial land-grabs, the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) has taken the first steps towards regulating takeovers of agricultural land by foreign governments and corporations.

The Voluntary Guidelines on the Responsible Governance of Tenure of Land, Fisheries and Forests were endorsed by the FAO’s Committee on World Food Security in May, and provide a template for both tenancy and sale agreements with foreign investors. Previously, developing countries have been at the mercy of tenancies drawn up by foreign governments and corporations, often using jargon and techno-speak to disguise an unfair deal for their hosts.
Speaking during the negotiations Jean Ziegler, former UN special rapporteur on the right to food concluded “Land grabbing is clearly a gross violation of the rights of peasants. Most of these land grabs are not even for food production but for agrofuels, which are destroying our land, society, environment and our food sovereignty. We have to forbid land grabbing, if we want to protect our food system.”


Meanwhile in London on 26-28 June, protests are expected at the Agriculture Investment Summit, the European leg of a global series of events billed as “the leading conference for investors looking to invest in agriculture as an asset class”.

With speakers from Goldman Sachs and the World Bank, as well as agribusiness representatives, biofuel analysts, and corporate food buyers, this looks like a great place to find out what’s really going on. Unfortunately a ticket to the conference costs £4,476, so there might be quite a few people on the pavement outside. For details of the protest on 26th June, contact Becky at becky.slater@foe.co.uk .

www.terrapinn.com/2012/agri/speakers-list.stm
www.farmlandgrab.org