ActionAid report says intl. aid & public policies facilitate corporate land grabs, leaving farmers impoverished & vulnerable

We invited the following companies mentioned in the report in the context of allegations to respond:

  • Addax Bioenergy responded
  • Daewoo Logistics has not yet responded - we will indicate here whether it responds
  • Diageo did not respond
  • Dominion Farms did not respond
  • Mitr Phol did not respond - previous response provided
    Note: Mitr Phol is linked to Angkor Sugar Company, Tonle Sugar Cane Company, Cane and Sugar Valley Compan according to past reports
  • Kenya Jatropha Energy (part of Nuove Iniziative Industrali) has not yet responded - we will indicate here whether it responds
  • LYP Group did not respond - previous response by Phnom Penh Sugar provided
  • SABMiller referred to a previous response
  • Senhuile referred us to a previous response (only available in French)
  • Standard Bank did not respond
  • Sun Biofuels ceased to exist since the allegations

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Report
16 July 2014

Full ActionAid report

Author: ActionAid

"The Great Land Heist: How the world is paving the way for corporate land grabs", May 2014

In The Great Land Heist, ActionAid presents cases highlighting how land grabs in Cambodia, Kenya, India, Mozambique, Senegal, Sierra Leone and Tanzania are leading to forced evictions,human rights violations, lost livelihoods, divided communities,destruction ofculturally significant sites, rising food insecurity and, ultimately, increased poverty. Crucially, it also shows how women, who undertake the majority of household food production in many countries, often fare worst from land grabs. But this disastrous trend can be stopped. Reforms are urgently needed to remove the array of public finance and policy incentives that buoy land grabbing, and redirect resources into types of agricultural production that are both more equitable and more sustainable...[Refers to Addax Bioenergy, Angkor Sugar Company, Cane and Sugar Valley, Cargill, Dominion Farms, Phnom Penh Sugar, Kampong Speu Sugar, Kenya Jatropha Energy (part of Nuove Iniziative Industrali), Koh Kong Sugar, Sénéthanol, Senhuile, Sun Biofuels, Tonle Sugar Cane]

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Article
16 July 2014

World Bank and aid donors accused of enabling land grabs

Author: Ellie Violet Bramley, Guardian (UK)

"World Bank and aid donors accused of enabling land grabs", 21 May 2014

In a report published on Tuesday, the NGO ActionAid says public money and policy incentives such as tax breaks and cut-price loans are facilitating land deals that threaten the lives and livelihoods of small-scale farmers in poor countries. ActionAid warns that the consequences of such deals, which are too often happening behind closed doors and with little or no consultation with local communities, include "forced evictions, human rights violations, lost livelihoods, divided communities ... rising food insecurity and, ultimately, increased poverty"...A spokesman for the World Bank said it was also concerned about the risks of large-scale land deals and stressed that it did not support investments that took advantage of weak institutions in developing countries. ActionAid's report says weak governance and regulation of land use and agricultural investments have left millions of smallholder farmers and indigenous people in vulnerable situations "lack[ing] recognition over their land rights, even if they have resided in or used the area for generations"...ActionAid's report also looks at how governments of developing countries are facilitating large-scale land deals through direct intervention in sales and lease agreements, and by introducing public policy incentives such as tax holidays for agribusiness investors.

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Company response
15 July 2014

Addax Bioenergy responded

Addax Bioenergy referred us to a letter to ActionAid available here.

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Company non-response
15 July 2014

Diageo did not respond

Company non-response
15 July 2014

Dominion Farms did not respond

Company non-response
15 July 2014

LYP Group did not respond

Previous response from Phnom Penh Sugar available here.

Company non-response
15 July 2014

Mitr Phol did not respond

Previous response available here.

Company response
15 July 2014

SABMiller referred us to a previous response

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Company non-response
15 July 2014

Standard Bank did not respond

Company response
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Author: Senhuile S.A., Dakar (Sénégal)

L'objectif du projet Agro-Industriel est d'assurer un rendement agricole élevé, tout en respectant l'environnement, mais aussi en prêtant attention à l'amélioration de la situation sociale des communautés rurales intéressées et impliquées dans le projet; donc au développement socio-économique de tous les villages concernés. Nous voulons apporter quelques éclaircissements sur certains points qui ont été relevés par les médias et par les organes d'information de manière générale...Concernant les événements malheureux survenus à Fanaye en Octobre 2011 que nous déplorons fortement, nous tenons à préciser qu'ils se sont produits au niveau des bureaux de la Communauté Rurale de Fanaye lors d'une réunion interne sur la répartition des budgets. Aucun agent ni représentant de Senhuile n'y était présent... [Concernant]...la mort par noyade des 03 enfants, nous voulons aussi préciser que ce drame est survenu en dehors des périmètres de Senhuile...Aucun drame de ce genre ne s'est produit au niveau des canaux de Senhuile...nous assurons qu'à ce jour aucun village ni amont n'a été déplacé par Senhuile. Notre projet n'envisage pas la délocalisation des populations. En outre, Senhuile attribue à chaque famille impactée par le projet, 0,3ha de terre entièrement aménagée et irriguée à ses frais. Ces familles peuvent aussi bénéficier de notre aide pour l'accès aux semences et aux intrants.

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