Land registration, credit and agricultural investment in Africa

Author(s): Daniel Domeher, (School of the Built Environment, Liverpool John Moores University, Liverpool, UK), Raymond Abdulai, (School of the Built Environment, Liverpool John Moores University, Liverpool, UK)

Citation: Daniel Domeher, Raymond Abdulai, (2012) “Land registration, credit and agricultural investment in Africa”, Agricultural Finance Review, Vol. 72 Iss: 1, pp.87 – 103

Publisher: Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Abstract:
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to critically examine the argument linking land registration to agricultural investment and to provide theoretical reasons as to why this linkage may not materialise in Africa within the short to medium term.

Design/methodology/approach – The paper takes the form of a critical review of the relevant literature on land registration, access to credit and agricultural investment; arguments are built on empirical studies found in the literature and theoretical concepts.

Findings – It has been established in this paper that the links between landed property registration and agricultural investments are made defective in Africa by factors such as poverty, lack of appropriate agro-based infrastructure and the fact that land registration per se does not improve the profitability of agriculture, neither does it improve access to credit.

Research limitations/implications – The fact that this paper is based on literature review may be seen as a weakness to some extent.

Originality/value – Even though previous researchers have looked at the relationship between landed property registration and agricultural investment in the developing world, they fall short of critically explaining why land registration has been found not to enhance agricultural investment. This paper fills the gap through a combination of various theoretical and practical arguments which could call for a rethinking on the policies for promoting agricultural growth. The rigorous theoretical argument may also provide the basis for further empirical research.

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