Land grabbing in Pakistan - Commercial Pressures on Land

Got independence in 1947
Pakistan has an area encompassing 796,096
square KMs.
Approximately 10.36% of the rural population
is landless;
32.67 % owns land under 1 hectare;
0.046% owns between 1 and 2 hectare of land;
0.0309% owns 2-3 hectares of land;
Only 0.0293% owns 5 or more hectares of
 Agriculture
is backbone of
Pakistan’s economy contributing
25% of GDP, employing 47% of
labour force, contributing 49% to
 Production and accounting for
67% of export earning.
 First
land reforms in 1959, fixed
ceiling of 200 hec. Of irrigates and
400 hec. Of non irrigated land
 1972 second land reforms by Bhutto
government, ceiling 5 hec. Irrigated
and 20 hec. Of non irrigated
 1977 ceiling was further adjusted as 4
acres irrigated and 8 hec. Non
 The
Government claims that
Corporate Agriculture Farming will
enhance efficiency of production.
 It
has potential to inject muchneeded investment into
agriculture and rural areas to
alleviated rural poverty
 It
takes only five units of inputs to
produce 100 units of produce
through multi-cropped traditional
organic methods,
 while it takes 300 units through
chemical monoculture to produce
the same 100 units of crops. How
is that efficient?
The Corporate Farming Ordinance
(CFO), under the military regime of
General Pervaiz Musharaf was passed in
 Under the Ordinance, listed
corporations can now lease land in
Pakistan for a period of 99 years,
broken into two periods of 50 and 49
 TNCs
can take lease of unlimited
land with a minimum ceiling of
1500 acres.
 In addition, the TNCs have been
promised 100% equity, numerous
tax incentives as well as full
repatriation of profits.
Government has identified state
lands which it would lease under
the CFO.
Oil rich states who have run out their
own water resources are now eying land
of poor countries
 Some UAE firms have acquired about
16,187 hectares of land in Pakistan’s
Balochistan province for an estimated
$40 million to produce food for their
population back home
 Possible
purchase of about 12,140
hectares in Shikarpur, Larkana,
Sukker, Thatta & Badin in Sindh is
being negotiated.
 The UAE imports about 85 per cent
of its food from abroad at an
estimated cost of $2.9 billion.
A Bahrain company, Market Access
Promotion (MAP) Services Group, says
it will develop ten model dairy and
livestock farms in Pakistan during in
2008–10. A Qatari firm is reportedly
eyeing the acquisition of Kollurkar
farm in Punjab but Pakistan Farmers
Forum says that the deal if inked may
dislocate 25,000 villages.
 The
Saudi Fund for Development
is creating a $566m special
investment vehicle for buying land
abroad for producing rice and
wheat for the country. The first
investment will be made in Sudan,
to be followed in Turkey and
 The
Al Rabie Group is
interested in buying land in
Pakistan to develop dairy
industry there and also to
develop exports of tomato
paste, citrus pulp and
packed beans for the Saudi
In June, the UAE government was in bilateral
talks with Islamabad for purchase of $400500m worth of farmland of 100,000–200,000
acres in large holdings in Punjab and Sindh
provinces. Details are being finalized.
But UAE investors want to purchase land directly
in Pakistan and also want to get the lands
exempted from any export restriction on the
food produced there. Abraaj Capital acquired
some 800,000 acres of “barren” farmland last
year to produce rice and wheat for export to
by seeking to solve their food shortage
problem in this way, the rich emerging
economies may succeed in producing enough
quantity for their populations but may in the
long-term be exporting their food insecurity
to other nations.
Environment is another concern as deep tube
well technologies, pesticides and chemical
fertilizers will further deteriorate the

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