land disputes

Land ownership has always been a hot issue in Colombia, and it is regarded as the underlying cause of the internal armed conflict that has left nearly a quarter million people dead and millions displaced over fifty decades.

The debate is keener than ever, with recent agricultural protests that have rattled the country. Now, according to a report released by Oxfam late last week, there appears to be a new actor fuelling the fire of that debate: US commodities trader Cargill. Read more

Any legislation on land acquisition involves a careful balancing act, protecting landowners while encouraging development. It is an important and sensitive issue in any emerging nation.

So it is perhaps not surprising that India’s Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Bill, 2011 (LARR) has faced repeated delays. Once again, an all-party meeting to discuss the bill last Thursday failed to reach consensus and another is set for March 20. Read more

They don’t call them the “Fishing” islands for nothing, it seems. The territory at the centre of the protracted Sino-Japanese-Taiwanese islands dispute is known as Diaoyu in Chinese, which means fishing, and now Beijing is making sure that Chinese citizens get a taste of the islands – just in time for Chinese New Year when fish is usually high on the menu. Read more

Violent protests over the ownership of some uninhabited islands have brought the fractious relationship between Japan and China into the spotlight. From both sides of the East China Sea, the FT’s Mure Dickie examines the issue of rising nationalism.

Shares in leading Japanese car makers slipped on Friday as evidence mounted of the scale of the customers’ revolt in China prompted by the territorial row between the two countries.

Whether the clients are genuinely angry about the disputed islands, or simply worried about what the neighbours might think, matters less for the hard-pressed sales executives than the hard numbers. Reuters reported on Friday that Chinese sales at Toyota Motor, the top Japanese carmaker, plunged 40 per cent last month. Read more

It has not taken long for the China-Japan dispute over a few uninhabited islands in the East China Sea to affect business.

Following a wave of anti-Japan protests in China, including attacks on Japanese property, some Japanese companies with operations in the country have temporarily closed their plants and offices. And with China on Tuesday marking the anniversary of the 1931 Japanese occupation, there are fears that the public anger provoked by the territorial row could fuel more outbreaks of violence. Read more

A 50-year-old border dispute has reignited between Malawi and Tanzania over ownership of Lake Malawi, Africa’s third largest lake. The reason? Oil and gas.

Malawi’s late president, Bingu wa Mutharika, awarded an exploration contract to UK company Surestream Petroleum during mounting tension over entitlement to the lake last October. Surestream was one of seven companies to bid for hydrocarbon exploration licenses in the Lake Malawi basin. Read more