T54a Land management policies and family farming (WT54) - 中欧社会论坛 - China Europa Forum

T54a Land management policies and family farming (WT54)

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- In autumn 2007, as part of the Second China-Europa Forum, a workshop on “Soil Management and Land Policies” was organised in Paris by AGTER (an NGO to contribute to improve the governance of Land, Water and Natural Resources), in collaboration with the Department of School of Land and Real Estate Management of the People’s University, Beijing1. In association with European and Chinese partners who already expressed their interest, AGTER proposes to continue the dialog on land tenure policies.


- Preparatory documents for the workshops - meeting in Paris in July 2009

- China-Europa Forum catalogue

Workshop presentation

Workshop on Rural Land Policies and family farming


- From the Second to the Third China-Europe Forum: continue the dialog and focus on crucial challenges regarding land tenure

Presentations and discussions that took place during the 2007 workshop raised many questions which could not be answered during the limited time of the workshop, underlying the need for further thinking and exchanges. In particular, challenges crucial for the future of China and Europe were pointed out that became even more important since then, in the context of the on-going land and rural development reforms in China and of the recent food and financial crisis. These challenges are the following:

Topics for debates

Modalities for regulation and governance of natural resources, especially land, at central and local level

- The workshop highlighted the diversity of land tenure policies in China as well as in European countries in the past and at present. The ways land tenure policies are implemented in China are not known well enough: How are implemented the land tenure policies at local level? What is their practical impact on people, on the society, on agricultural production, on environment? What are the obstacles facing the implementation of these public policies? What are their successes? These questions would deserve further studies and sharing of information. Finally, the issue of governance, including the relationship between persons, households, local communities, local and central government appears essential.

Rural labour force and migrations

- the areas of arable land available per capita is very limited and even further shrinking these last years in China. On the other hand, the major part of rural income comes from off-farm migration activities. What future for farmers?

- After the Second World War, massive rural migration occurred in Europe, which was accompanied by a rapid increase in urbanisation. Which measures were taken in Europe to facilitate (and encourage?) the settlement of rural households in the cities?

- How do migrations of the rural population in China impact land tenure, land structure, land distribution and access to land? Local adjustments have been going on (rent, exchanges, etc.) formally or informally. Field surveys, case studies or examples from experience would be very useful to draw lessons and further understand the on-going dynamic.

Food security, rural development and environment

- Food security as well as addressing environmental challenges are main priorities of the Chinese government,. Did Europe face such challenges? If yes, which solutions have been found? Are there further issues facing Europe?

Farming structures

- Why do the European countries seem to encourage small farms which, theoretically, are less productive than larger ones?

General remarks

- In China and in Europe, what are the status, concepts and believes related to land tenure?

- The question of vocabulary and translation was considered as essential for mutual understanding and further practical understanding of the situations: to which history, to which reality do the words refer to? In which circumstances are these words employed?