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Now showing items 1 - 13 of 13

  • Land tenure insecurity and rural-urban migration in rural China

    Ma, Xianlei   Heerink, Nico   van Ierland, Ekko   Shi, Xiaoping  

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  • Farmland tenure in China: Comparing legal, actual and perceived security

    Ma, Xianlei   Heerink, Nico   Feng, Shuyi   Shi, Xiaoping  

    This paper examines the magnitudes of legal security, actual security and perceived security of farmland tenure, and the causes of currently prevailing land tenure insecurity in rural China. Two farm household surveys conducted in the northwest of Gansu province in 2010 and in the northeast of Jiangxi province in 2011 are used as case studies. Although recent land tenure reforms have significantly improved legal tenure security, we find that farm households still experience substantial insecurity of actual and perceived land tenure. We argue that social security considerations, ambiguous formulations of laws, and village self-governance rules are three important underlying causes. Actual and perceived land tenure security is lowest in the case study region in Jiangxi province even though the share of off-farm income in rural household incomes is much larger in that region. We explain this finding from investments in land quality improvement made by rural households in the Gansu case study region, the larger per capita land resources in that region, and the limited social security provided by off-farm employment. (C) 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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  • Land tenure security and technical efficiency: new insights from a case study in Northwest China

    Ma, Xianlei   Heerink, Nico   Feng, Shuyi   Shi, Xiaoping  

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  • The demonstration effect of transactions between strangers on those between acquaintances:evidence from land rentals in rural China

    Qiu, Tongwei   Luo, Biliang   Choy, S. T. Boris   Ma, Xianlei   He, Qinying  

    Over the last decade, introducing outer village lessees has been an important approach to increasing the marketization of land rentals in rural China. However, with large numbers of informal features among acquaintances, the effect of introducing outer village lessees is ambiguous. In this paper, data from the 2015 China Household Finance Survey are used to analyse the demonstration effect of land rentals between strangers on those between acquaintances, and land rent is used to represent the marketization of land rentals. The estimated results indicate that with the emergence of outer village lessees, lessors transacting with acquaintances are more likely to obtain high land rents and to rent out farmland for profit. Evidence shows that profit motives are the key pathway by which the presence of outer village lessees affects land rents. The analysis using the sample of lessees supports our findings. Our analysis implies that the demonstration effect exists in land rental markets, and also provides a feasible instrument for promoting market-oriented land rentals between acquaintances.
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  • The effect of land tenure governance on technical efficiency:evidence from three provinces in eastern China

    Zhou, Yuepeng   Shi, Xiaoping   Heerink, Nico   Ma, Xianlei  

    This study aims to identify the mechanisms through which land tenure governance affects the technical efficiency of grain production in an integrated framework and to examine the impacts of the public governance, village self-governance, and relational governance of land tenure on the technical efficiency of contracted land and rented-in land. Farm-level survey data collected from Liaoning, Jiangxi, and Jiangsu provinces covering the years of 2014 and 2015 is used for the empirical analysis. The findings indicate that (i) public governance associated with land certification significantly increases the technical efficiency of grain production; (ii) village self-governance and administrative land reallocations can serve as substitutes for the land rental market in optimizing the distribution of land resources and improving technical efficiency; and (iii) compared to multi-year transfer contracts, both annual and open-ended transfer contracts have negative impacts on technical efficiency.
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  • Perceived land tenure security in rural Xinjiang,China:The role of official land documents and trust

    Rao, Fangping   Spoor, Max   Ma, Xianlei   Shi, Xiaoping  

    The role of formal tenure institutions in reducing land tenure insecurity has been long debated in the development economics literature. This study examines and compares the key determinants of perceptions of security of tenure over contract land and wasteland, two types of land that are characterized by tenure being formally and informally ascribed. The material is drawn from the Chinese region of Xinjiang, an ethnically heterogeneous region which has more complex tenure systems than elsewhere in China. Empirical estimations based on a survey of 352 households, complemented by interviews with key informants, demonstrate that formal institutions (measured by official land documents) do not significantly contribute to households' perceptions of tenure security on either type of land, and that both interpersonal trust and political trust significantly enhance perceived tenure security on either land type in our research area. The empirical evidence further shows that perceptions of tenure security on both types of land are more sensitive to trust towards village cadres than trust in villagers. (c) 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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  • Property rights integrity,tenure security and forestland rental market participation:Evidence from Jiangxi Province,China

    Zhou, Yuepeng   Shi, Xiaoping   Ji, Dengyan   Ma, Xianlei   Chand, Satish  

    The decentralization of property rights is the focus of the forest tenure reforms in several developing countries. In China, it was achieved by the launch of a new round of collective forest tenure reform beginning in 2003, which provided farmers with more integrated and secure forestland rights. Drawing on household data collected in Jiangxi province in 2011 and 2013, this paper examines the impacts of households' recognition of property rights and improved tenure security on forestland rental activities. Our empirical results show that households with higher perceptions of more complete use rights and mortgage rights have a lower probability and intensity of renting-in land, while households with lower expectations of future forestland redistribution or expropriation are more likely to rent in forestland and more of it. These results imply that the development of a forestland rental market leading to better forest management requires an integrated forestland management approach consisting of decentralization of property rights and village governance. In particular, the central government may further clarify the rights and obligations affiliated to forestland ownership, contractual rights, and management rights; while the village collective may shift from direct intervention in the integrity and security of forestland rights to the supervision and protection of decentralized forestland rights to increase efficiency from the decentralization of property rights.
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  • Social relations,public interventions and land rent deviation:Evidence from Jiangsu Province in China

    Tang, Liang   Ma, Xianlei   Zhou, Yuepeng   Shi, Xiaoping   Ma, Jia  

    The price mechanism plays an important role in allocating resources and enhancing economic efficiency and equity of land markets. In this paper, we examine the impacts of social relations between rental partners and public interventions imposed by local governments or village collectives on land rent deviation and discuss efficiency and equity impacts as well. Household-level data collected in 2014 covering 907 households in 30 villages in Jiangsu Province, China, are used for empirical analysis. We find that social relations based on blood ties and geographical location increase the levels of land rent deviation and lead to a loss of efficiency and equity of the segmented land rental market. However, public interventions, i.e., land use limitations, collective permission and collective organization, may contribute to reducing land rent deviation and improving the efficiency and equity of the market. Further evidence suggests that public interventions induce land rental transactions among partners other than relatives or familiar villagers.
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  • Does Property Rights Integrity Improve Tenure Security? Evidence from China's Forest Reform

    Zhou, Yuepeng   Ma, Xianlei   Ji, Dengyan   Heerink, Nico   Shi, Xiaoping   Liu, Hongbin  

    The purpose of this paper is to examine the impact of land property rights integrity, subdivided into use rights, mortgage rights, and transfer rights, on household perceptions of long-term tenure security in China. To this end, we establish a theoretical framework that links China's collective forest tenure reforms undertaken since 2003 to property rights integrity and two sources of tenure (in)security based on property rights theory: forestland reallocation and expropriation. Probit models are applied in the empirical analysis to household data collected in Jiangxi province in 2011 and 2013. The results indicate that household perceptions of tenure insecurity resulting from forestland reallocation expectations are affected by transfer rights, whereas household perceptions of insecurity resulting from forestland expropriation expectations are not affected by forestland rights. We thus suggest that it is crucial for policymakers to identify the sources of local property rights insecurity before they take steps to strengthen land tenure security. This paper contributes to the available literature on the relationship between property rights integrity and tenure security by identifying different sources of tenure insecurity, emphasizing the effect of property rights integrity on long-term tenure security, and taking into account the potential endogeneity problem.
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  • Decisions by Chinese households regarding renting in arable land-The impact of tenure security perceptions and trust

    Ma, Xianlei   Heerink, Nico   van Ierland, Ekko   Lang, Hairu   Shi, Xiaoping  

    Policies aimed at strengthening tenure security through the elimination of land reallocations and provision of land certificates have been implemented with different degrees of success in rural China. In this study, we examine the impact of tenure security perceptions and trust on household decisions to rent in land in a region where tenure security is high and in a region where households face much lower land tenure security. Our regression results suggest that when land tenure is less secure, household perceptions of tenure security positively affect decisions to rent in additional land and the size of the rented land, whereas trust is important for the choice between oral and written contracts. When land tenure is relatively secure, household tenure security perceptions are less relevant, and trust becomes more important for land rental decisions. However, tenure security perceptions do seem to play a role in the choice between oral and written contracts in such high tenure security environments.
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  • Land tenure security and technical efficiency:new insights from a case study in Northwest China

    Ma, Xianlei   Heerink, Nico   Feng, Shuyi   Shi, Xiaoping  

    Improving technical efficiency in agriculture can play an important role in meeting present and future demands for agricultural products, at the same time enhancing the long-term sustainability of land and water use. This paper examines the impact of household perceptions of land tenure security on technical efficiency using detailed household-level data collected in Minle County in northwest China. The authors find that the (perceived) tenure security provided by land certificates encourages part-time farming with relatively low technical efficiency. The renting out of land by households with migrant members can only partly make up for this negative effect, because land rental markets are thin and highly fragmented. Therefore, the provision of land certificates to rural households has a negative impact on technical efficiency. For tenure security provided by the expected absence of land reallocations in the near future, on the other hand, the authors find that it reduces temporary migration and thereby contributes to higher technical efficiency.
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  • Heterogeneity in interventions in village committee and farmland circulation:Intermediary versus regulatory effects

    Shi, Xiaoping   Chen, Shujie   Ma, Xianlei   Lan, Jing  

    Through comparing the intermediary regulatory effects, this paper investigates the effects of the village committee on farmer households' participation in farmland circulation based on rural household survey data from Jiangsu and Jiangxi collected in 2014. Our results indicate that farmers' lack of trust in the village committee probably weakens the intermediary effect, and so reduces the possibility of households' participating in renting lands. In addition, farmland circulation information provided by the village committee can promote farmland circulation in terms of renting out lands, but it demonstrates a "discriminatory" effect on households' renting decisions as the significant effect can only be found for participants who are renting large-scale farmlands. Furthermore, the regulatory effect induced by the village committee tends to reduce households' participation in farmland circulation with respect to both renting and renting out the lands. Finally, the "heterogeneous" regulatory effect is inclined to distort the household's expectations of risk from participating in farmland circulation.
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  • Land tenure security and land investments in Northwest China

    Ma, Xianlei   Heerink, Nico   van Ierland, Ekko   van den Berg, Marrit   Shi, Xiaoping  

    Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to examine the effect of perceived land tenure security in China on farmers' decisions to invest in relatively long-term land quality improvement measures, taking into account the potential endogeneity of tenure security. Design/methodology/approach - Data from a survey held in 2008 and 2010 among 259 households in Minle County, Gansu province, covering the years 2007 and 2009, are used to estimate the factors affecting land levelling investments, irrigation canal investments and perceived land tenure security. The authors use the 2SCMIL technique and the IVLS method to estimate a selection model and a non-limited regression model, respectively, and use WP methods to examine the robustness of the results. Findings - The authors' results indicate that perceived land tenure security significantly affects self-governed investments but does not affect individual investments in land quality improvements. In particular, the authors find that households that consider land certificates as important for protecting land rights invest significantly more in irrigation canals construction and maintenance. The authors' results further provide evidence that individual investments in land quality improvement contribute to higher perceived land tenure security. Originality/value - The paper contributes to the available literature on the relationship between land tenure security and land investments by examining the role of perceived (instead of formal) land tenure security and by making a distinction between individual household investments and self-governed land investments. The authors' results provide an explanation for the phenomenon that land readjustments still take place in some parts of China, but not in others.
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