NEW ACTORS POUR ONTO STAGE
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CTA. 1998. NEW ACTORS POUR ONTO STAGE. Spore 75. CTA, Wageningen, The Netherlands.
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In many ACP States, the pressure of tourism is leading to hotel development and the establishment, or expansion, of 'nature reserves' for photo safaris and hunting. It causes land prices to rise. In Kenya alone, income from tourism reached US $450...
In many ACP States, the pressure of tourism is leading to hotel development and the establishment, or expansion, of 'nature reserves' for photo safaris and hunting. It causes land prices to rise. In Kenya alone, income from tourism reached US $450 million in 1996. Speculation for agricultural land in peri-urban zones is being encouraged by urban growth. A Beninese consultant, Euloge Awede, reports 'a land grab competition by top civil servants, politicians and military officers in the outskirts of Cotonou and Porto Novo'. Irrigation schemes also create new waves of interest ? and give rise to redistribution of land along vote-catching lines. In Mauritania, tension grew when the rice-growing area of Gorgol, on the banks of the River Senegal, was opened up. The land was due to be divided into three parts: one for the owner, one for the company operating the site services (canals, dykes) and one for growers. The latter complained that 'the agreement was not respected. The parcels of land that were supposed to be allocated to us went to traders and civil servants, mainly Moors originally from the north of the country.'1 The response of the official agency for allocation was that 'the land belongs to all Mauritanians. The key point is that it gets used.' There is no doubt that the development of irrigated areas requires investment, but such a response would be more convincing if an active parallel market in re-selling and renting had not started up the day after the area was opened. 1 see 'Les privilégiés des terres irriguées' (Syfia, Bulletin mensuel 108, January 1998)
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