World Rainforest Movement

Agrarian reform in reverse in Asia: new laws grab land from farmers

A report by the NGO GRAIN shows how governments throughout Asia are quietly enacting a host of legislative changes that eliminate the few protections that farmers have traditionally enjoyed, exposing them to appropriation of their lands by large agricultural corporations. The changes vary from country to country, but all are designed to help companies acquire large areas of land belonging to peasant and farming communities. The concentration of land in Asia is greater than ever. A mere six percent of landowners in Asia have two-thirds of the agricultural land. Many of these landowners are politically connected elites, as in the case of the Philippines, Cambodia, Malaysia, Pakistan and Indonesia.