When Tanzania gained independence in 1961, President Julius Nyerere used the political ideology of Ujamaa ‘African Socialism’ as the basis for transferring customary land right to elected village councils and encouraging collective cultivation. Today, 75% of the country’s population lives in rural areas, with agriculture accounting for 45% of the total GDP.

The Constitution of Tanzania recognizes the right to own property for every person and the right to protect this property in accordance with the law. The Land Act and Village Act of 1999 set the principles for the classification of land and governance of village land. The 1999 Land Act facilitates the granting of mortgages to secure loans, while making is easier for lenders to take possession or sell mortgaged land. In Zanzibar, the Land tenure Act of 1992 established that government can give the rights to occupation that are perpetual and transferable.

Land disputes in Tanzania are mostly due to the uncertainty of tenure caused by the occupation of lands that had been abandoned during the ‘villagization’ program and the occupation of these same lands. Therefore, conflicts are generally between people that occupied land and people returning to the land they historically held. Competition for natural resources, land use, village boundaries and the allocation of common resources, and access to development plans that deny access to land and resources for local communities are all sources of conflict. In Tanzania, both formal and informal tribunals are empowered to resolve land disputes according to Tanzania’s formal law. 

Source of the narrative

Disclaimer: The data displayed on the Land Portal is provided by third parts indicated as the data source or as the data provider. The Land Portal team is constantly working to ensure the highest possible standard of data quality and accuracy, yet the data is by its nature approximate and will contain some inaccuracies. The data may contain errors introduced by the data provider(s) and/or by the Land Portal team. In addition, this page allows you to compare data from different sources, but not all indicators are necessarily statistically comparable. The Land Portal Foundation (A) expressly disclaims the accuracy, adequacy, or completeness of any data and (B) shall not be liable for any errors, omissions or other defects in, delays or interruptions in such data, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon. Neither the Land Portal Foundation nor any of its data providers will be liable for any damages relating to your use of the data provided herein.


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Land Governance Assessment Framework (LGAF)

Please, select year and panels to show the info.

    • Very Good Practice
    • Good Practice
    • Weak Practice
    • Very Weak Practice
    • Missing Value

    Voluntary Guidelines on the Responsible Governance of Tenure

    Legend: National laws adoption of the VGGT principle
    • Fully adopt
    • Partially adopt
    • Not adopted
    • Missing Value

    Note: The Voluntary Guidelines on the Responsible Governance of Tenure of Land, Fisheries, and Forests in the Context of National Food Security (The VGGTs) were endorsed by the Committee on World Food Security in 2012.

    The "VGGT indicators" dataset has been created by Nicholas K. Tagliarino, PhD Candidate at the University of Groningen, with support from Daniel Babare and Myat Noe (LLB Students, University of Groningen). The indicators assess national laws in 50 countries across Asia, Africa, and Latin America against international standards on expropriation, compensation, and resettlement as established by Section 16 of the VGGTs.

    Each indicator relates to a principle established in section 16 of the VGGTs. Hold the mouse against the small "i" button above for a more detailed explanation of the indicator.

    Answering the questions posed by these indicators entails analyzing a broad range of national-level laws, including national constitutions, land acquisition acts, land acts, community land acts, agricultural land acts, land use regulations, and some court decisions.


    Latest News

    Villagers in Kinywang’anga celebrate the completion of land registration efforts in their community. USAID
    11 May 2017

    How two villages are working to redefine the future of land registration.

    22 March 2017


    NYASHANA, Tanzania (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - As Tanzanian widow Ruth Zacharia raised her right arm to protect her skull from a volley of machete blows, her three attackers sliced through her hand.

    She fell to the floor; one leg slid into the kitchen fire.

    "They said: 'We have been sent by our mother because you killed our father so that you could buy that land'," the 63-year-old recalled, fidgeting with her stiff, scarred right hand.

    "I said: 'I am not a witch'... They started cutting me all over."


    By: Kizito Makoye Shigela

    Date: 12 January 2017

    Source: IDN - InDepthNews

    Kiyowela village in Tanzania’s southern highlands, every widow has a story to tell about how community volunteers have helped them solve property disputes with their relatives.


    By: Kizito Makoye Shigela

    Date: 19 December 2016

    Source: Eurasia Review

    Tanzania has adopted a new national land policy which, among others, lowers the ceiling under which foreign investors can lease land from the current 99 to 33 years.

    The new policy comes barely months after the East African nation embarked on a campaign to seize “idle” land and deter “rogue investors” from using it for speculative purposes.

    Latest Blog

    This map draws on Chinese infrastructure project location data from AidData and forest cover loss data from Hansen et al. (2013).

    Conservationists and environmental advocacy groups have warned that the nature, pace and scale of Chinese-funded infrastructure projects in the developing world may lead to unintended environmental consequences, especially in so-called “ecological hotspots.” Until now, there has been no systematic, large-scale evidence that confronts the causal claim that Chinese-funded development projects have

    The Sugar Rush in South Africa - land grabs, land rights, human rights, agriculture
    Southern Africa
    Sub-Saharan Africa

    By Ian Scoones, Professorial Fellow at the Institute of Development Studies, and the Director of the ESRC STEPS Centre at Sussex

    The expansion of sugar production in southern Africa has been dramatic. From its early beginnings in Natal to the huge commercial estates across the region established during the colonial era, new investments are being planned. The land rush in southern Africa is often a sugar rush, with the ‘white gold’ promising riches to governments, local elites and large corporates alike.

    Latest Events

    10 August 2017 to 11 August 2017


    Julius Nyerere Convention Centre Dar es Salaam

    The Institution of Surveyors of Tanzania (IST), The Tanzanian Institution of Valuers & Estate Surveyors (TIVEA)

    in collaboration with The Commonwealth Association of Surveying & Land Economy (CASLE)

    invite you to:- ‘An International Conference’

    31 May 2017 to 1 June 2017


    New America
    740 15th St NW #900
    20005 Washington , District Of Columbia
    United States
    District Of Columbia US
    South Africa


    24 May 2017


    United States





    5 June 2017 to 16 June 2017
    Godfrey Massay
    Lukasz Czerwinski

    From June 5-16, 2017, Landesa and the Land Portal will co-facilitate a dialogue through which a variety of stakeholders will contribute to discussion on the principles and practices of land-based investments, with a focus on the Tanzanian context. This is intended as part of the broader conversation on responsible investment in land principles, guidelines and practices that has proliferated since, at least, the 2009 food crisis and subsequent ‘land grabs’ that swept the global south


    Cover photo

    Parakuiyo Pastoralists Indigenous Community Development Organisation


    Lawyers’ Environmental Action Team


    Women Legal Aid Centre


    Tanzania Women Lawyers Association


    Legal and Human Rights Centre


    Pastoralists Indigenous Non Governmental Organizations Forum

    PINGO's Forum

    Research on Poverty Alleviation


    Ujamaa Community Resource Team



    Displaying 1 - 6 of 716
    Cover photo
    Conference Papers & Reports
    November 2012

    Presentation by the Minister for Lands on the initiatives to ensure full community involvement and environmental safeguards while putting underutilised land to productive use. This is to showcases opportunties in the land sector to investors.

    Cover photo
    Reports & Research
    July 2013

    This report presents findings from the first agricultural policy review conducted by the Monitoring African Food and Agricultural Policies (MAFAP) project in the United Republic of Tanzania. The report reviews key economic issues and the main policy decisions affecting the agricultural sector. In particular, it focuses on price incentives and disincentives faced by farmers and consumers of nine agricultural commodities which make up a significant part of agricultural production, imports, exports and diet.

    Cover photo
    Policy Papers & Briefs
    December 2011

    Despite progress made in adopting a more coordinated sectoral approach under initiatives such as Kilimo Kwanza and the Agricultural Sector Development Strategy, agricultural policies in Tanzania are implemented through a myriad of programs and projects.

    Cover photo
    Policy Papers & Briefs
    May 2017

    In this communiqué, the undersigned Non-State Actors (civil society, pastoralist, research, private, farmers’ unions and other stakeholders) champion a call to action and outline recommendations on livestock policy advocacy strategies that take into consideration the unique conditions and opportunities of the livestock sector development in Tanzania