Governments creating “Growth corridors” and “Special Economic Zones” facilitate the acquisition of great expanses of land by large corporations, both foreign and domestic, in the name of development. While these public-private partnerships are claimed to have beneficial developmental effects on local communities, such enclaves historically have generated not zones of growing prosperity for ordinary people, but pockets of persistent poverty.
Kaarhus? paper deconstructs the notion of Agricultural Growth Corridors as value-chain mechanisms and as means to promote an African Green Revolution, using the example of the Beira Agricultural Growth Corridor in Central Mozambique, with a special focus on questions of accountability when things go wrong. Two papers explore the political economy of Special Economic Zones in India. Levien?s overview essay argues that the accumulation by dispossession represented by SEZs is an extra economic process by which states use eminent domain to overcome the barriers to capitalist accumulation posed by insufficiently capitalist rural land markets. Raway, Bhushan and Surepally analyse the case of Polepally SEZ (Andra Pradesh). This case, they argue, stands as a warning against claims that SEZs will benefit local communities through the creation of jobs and infrastructure, or that land acquisition processes are consensual and compensation adequate.
Chair: Ben White, International Institute of Social Studies (ISS)
- Randi Kaarhus, Associate Professor, Department of International Environment and Development Studies (Noragric), UMB – Norwegian University of Life Sciences: Agricultural Development Corridors equals Land-grabbing? Models, roles and accountabilities in a Mozambican case (Presentation)
- Michael Levien, University of California at Berkeley, The Land Question: Special Economic Zones and the Political Economy of Dispossession in India
- Rawat, V.B., Bhushan, M.B., Surepally, S., Special Economic Zones in India with particular reference to land acquisition in Polepally, Andhra Pradesh (Presentation)