China's Historic Land Reform

China's Communist ruling party has agreed to allow farmers to transfer land use rights for farming. The plan is designed to consolidate landholdings, discourage uneconomic farmers, and boost rural incomes for 750 million people.
October 29, 2008, 2pm PDT | Chris Steins | @urbaninsight
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While the decision does not actually privatize agricultural land, which remains collective property, "it marks a huge improvement in tenure security for farmers.." says Li Ping, a lawyer with the Seattle-based Rural Development Institute, which advocates wider land rights for peasants.

"Building on experiments around the country, like the one Mr. Zheng is supervising, the new decision sets a policy framework to 'establish and improve a market for the transfer of land-use rights ... and allow farmers to transfer their rights by subcontracting, leasing, swapping, or using them to form a joint-stock company.'"

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Published on Monday, October 27, 2008 in Christian Science Monitor
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