Imagine a land of 14 million hectares, bigger than Switzerland and Austria combined. Populated by millions of farming families that together practice shifting cultivation. Now imagine a foreign consultant saying that all of these are abandoned lands. Another foreign company saying it will come to farm all of it. Yet another foreign company saying it will ship everything produced out of there. And a president agreeing to all of this, selling this 14 million hectares for a dollar per hectare. Can’t be true? It’s happening in a part of Mozambique. Brazil and Japan are going to colonise a big chunk of the country. Firoze asks Devlin for all the dirty details. An article on this project is here.
This is the second part of the interview. Go here if you missed the first part.
In this second part, Devlin talks about the drivers behind the landgrabbing. The World Bank directly finances some landgrabs, while Cargill is asking Mozambique to make the acquisition of land easier. Meanwhile, local groups are raising awareness and channeling the boiling anger to an organised resistance against this new form of colonisation.
Devlin Kuyek works for EJOLT partner GRAIN since 2003, after working with NGOs and peasant organisations in Malaysia and the Philippines. He is GRAIN’s most active researcher, focusing on monitoring and analysing global agribusiness, including the global land rush. Devlin is based in Montreal, Canada, and spends time supporting partners and staff in the regions as much as possible.
This podcast is part of a series produced by Firoze Manji for EJOLT, in collaboration with EJOLT partner CCS. All podcasts will be aired on his program AfrobeatRadio, broadcast by WBAI in the US to around 500.000 listeners