Brazilian megaproject in Mozambique set to displace millions of peasants

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(Maputo, Mozambique - 29 November 2012) - The Brazilian government and private sector are collaborating with Japan to push a large-scale agribusiness project in Northern Mozambique. The project, called ProSavana, will make 14 million hectares of land available to Brazilian agribusiness companies for the production of soybeans, maize and other commodity crops that will be exported by Japanese multinationals. This area of Mozambique, known as the Nacala Corridor, is home to millions of farming families who are at risk of losing their lands in the process.

The Nacala Corridor stretches along a rail line that runs from the port of Nacala, in Nampula Province, into the two northern districts of Zambézia Province and ends in Lichinga, in Niassa Province. It is the most densely populated region of the country. With its fertile soils and its con-sistent and generous rainfall, millions of small farmers work these lands to produce food for their families and for local and regional markets.

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Mozambican Farmer´s Union (UNAC) hosts a National Conference on Land Management

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Press release

(Maputo, 19 November 2012) – UNAC, the National Farmer’s Union (União Nacional de Camponeses), will host a national conference on land management on 27 and 28 November this year. It will be a public event which will aim to discuss the issue of land as a resource and how misuse of it perpetuates poverty and the erosion of the social fabric of the country’s rural communities.

In recent times Mozambique has become a stage for large-scale investments, attracting businessmen and companies from all over the world. Nevertheless, agricultural policies and large-scale investments in this sector have not benefited Mozambican farmers, although they are the social group that accounts for more than half of food production in the country.

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France, 30 000 to oppose Notre Dames des Landes airport construction

 

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On Saturday, November 17, 2012 after 3 weeks of evictions, more than 30000 persons joined the mobilisation to re-occupy the ZAD (1700 hectares of land near Nantes where the future airport of Notre-Dame-des-Landes is planned to be). As soon as the demonstration arrived, 5 pre-assembled structures started to get built: a meeting-room of 80m², a kitchen house, 2 dorms, a toilet and bath block and a workshop. Thanks to a sum of ingeniosity, mutualised know-hows and endless human chains to bring the tons of planks, as well as cross beams, metal sheets and straw needed for the work, the construction showed rapid progress.

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Land Grabbing for Agribusiness in Mozambique: UNAC statement on the ProSavana Programme

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We, peasants of the Provincial Nucleus of Peasants in Nampula, the Provincial Nucleus of Peasants in Zambezia, the Provincial Peasants Union of Niassa and the Provincial Union of Peasants of Cabo Delgado, and who are all members of the National Peasants' Union (UNAC), met on the 11th of October 2012, in the town of Nampula with the aim of discussing and analyzing the ProSavana Programme.

The ProSavana Programme is a triangular project between the Republic of Mozambique, the Federal Republic of Brazil and Japan, for the development of large-scale agriculture in the Nacala Development Corridor, affecting 14 districts in the provinces of Niassa, Nampula and Zambezia, covering an area of approximately 14 million hectares. The project was inspired by an earlier agricultural development project implemented by the Brazilian and Japanese governments in the Brazilian Cerrado (savannah), where large-scale industrial farming of monocrops (mainly soybeans) is now practiced. This Brazilian project led to a degradation of the environment and the near extinction of indigenous communities living in the affected areas. The Nacala Corridor was chosen because its savannah has similar characteristics to the Brazilian Cerrado, in terms of its climate and agroecology, and because of the ease with which products can be exported.

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