The livelihoods of millions of smallholder farmers in the Mekong region are tied to their land. But the demands for land for large-scale agriculture, industrial and energy development schemes such as monoculture plantations, special economic zones, and hydropower projects are taking away land from smallholders, giving rise to more landless farmers and increasing land inequality.
Meanwhile, national policies often fail to protect the rights of smallholder farmers who are poorly positioned to compete with these developers and to benefit from the outcomes of the investments.
This indicates a precarious future for smallholder farming-based livelihoods in the Mekong Region, the situation exacerbated by the failure of current labour markets to provide decent, secure jobs for the increasing number of landless people. Continue reading “Are rural youth in the Mekong region losing interest in farming?”