LAND ACCESS WORKING GROUP
Following a quick land access study which produced the Land Access Study Report, a Land Access Working Group was established and held its inaugural meeting on 5 February 2020. The top three priorities for the Group are:
LAND ACCESS GUIDE FOR LANDOWNERS AND AGRIBUSINESSES
The Guide (and Appendices) seeks to provide advice and resources to help customary landowners, investors and agribusinesses reach a durable agreement for agriculture investment in crops cultivation and production on customary land.
BUSINESS CASE FOR NEW LAND DISPUTE MECHANISM
An alternative dispute resolution mechanism that will support the dispute settlement authorities of Incorporated Land Groups (ILGs).
LAND AUDIT DATABASE
Contact has been made with the regional land office and the Department of Lands & Physical Planning to gather the required data and verify the landholdings vested with the ILGs. This database will complement the satellite and soil information of the Markham region to generate interest from farmers and agribusinesses.
Other Activities Under Land Access
The LAWG also took note of other issues and proposed work program contained in the Land Access Study Report. While not all activities will be implemented, there is a clear indication in that study and subsequent conversations during the Land Agreements Guide consultations, that besides a practical guide on land agreement, landowners and farmers require business development support. A comprehensive work program will be developed around all those key issues which have been identified as limiting farmer participation in agriculture development.
Grow PNG hopes that the user guide, complimented by better land dispute mediation system and hard data on land assets in the Markham will unlock the growth of the agriculture sector in this rich area of the country.