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Resolving the agricultural land lease problem in the Fiji Islands: current discussions and the way forward

Prasad, Biman C. (2006) Resolving the agricultural land lease problem in the Fiji Islands: current discussions and the way forward. School of Economics, the University of the South Pacific, Suva, Fiji.

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This paper analyses the current debate on land leases in Fiji. It argues that the recent positions taken by the government and the opposition will not lead to a satisfactory solution. It could be argued that the government and the opposition are posturing for the election by taking positions that are diametrically opposed. The erosion of preferential prices for sugar and the declining production in the agricultural sector is going to further reduce the demand for agricultural land leases and this could lead to more land being left idle. In addition, the declining rural population and the resulting decline in demand for land could further reduce the rental income of the landowners. This is likely to have an adverse impact on the living conditions of the landowners as many depend on rental incomes for their livelihoods. The lack of resolution of the impasse over the agricultural lease has promoted instability in the country and a permanent solution would have a positive impact on agricultural productivity and indirectly on investment and the whole economy. The recent proposal by Labour Party MP and prominent academic, Dr. Ganesh Chand, supported by the Asian Development Bank report on the Fiji Economy, is a way forward which promises to provide a permanent solution to the agricultural land lease problem in Fiji. The proposal calls for the state to lease all agricultural land from the NLTB and sub-lease it to the tenants. This would satisfy both the tenants who will have certainty of land leases and the Great Council of Chiefs and NLTB who wall all land to be leased under the NLTA.

Item Type: Other
Additional Information: Working Paper 2006/6.
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
Divisions: Faculty of Business and Economics (FBE) > School of Economics
Depositing User: Ms Neha Harakh
Date Deposited: 21 Mar 2006 00:49
Last Modified: 28 Jun 2012 09:50

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