Policy Forum

The Future of Chinese Land Rights

April 29, 2011 12:00 PM to 1:30 PM EDT

1st floor/Wintergarden

Featuring Roy Prosterman, Founder and Chairman Emeritus, Landesa; and Keliang Zhu, Attorney, China Team, Landesa; with comments by Xiaobo Zhang, Senior Research Fellow, International Food Policy Research Institute; moderated by Ian Vasquez, Director, Center for Global Liberty and Prosperity, Cato Institute.

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China now has one of the largest rural‐​urban income gaps in the world, with the vast majority of its 120 million extreme poor living in the countryside. A fundamental cause of enduring rural poverty is that many Chinese farmers do not have secure property rights to land. Roy Prosterman and Keliang Zhu will review the findings of Landesa’s recent large‐​scale survey of the status of farmers’ land rights. They will describe advances in the protection of such rights, the emergence of a land transactions market, and the growth of long‐​term investments by farmers. They will also discuss significant, ongoing violations of farmers’ property rights and the impact on Chinese stability and food production. Xiaobo Zhang will comment on China’s uneven protection of property rights.