After the end of the civil war, which lasted 16 years, Mozambique entered a period of national reconstruction and investment. During the war, a significant portion of the population moved to urban areas. However, the rural population nonetheless accounts for 63% of the total.

The Constitution of 2004 recognizes the state as owner of the land and it gives all Mozambicans the right to use and enjoy land as a means for the creation of wealth. It recognizes the rights to land acquired through inheritance or occupation. In addition, the 1997 Land Law protects the customary rights of communities to their traditional territories and these rights are considered equivalent to rights granted by the government. The Rural Land Law Regulations of 1998 establishes the process for the identification, acquisition, registration and transfer of land.

As the registration of land rights is not required by the Land Law, land disputes generally arise because the state or investors fail to recognize the nature of community land rights and uses. Other causes for conflicts are related to boundary disputes, inheritance and intra-family rights and land transactions. A formal court system has jurisdiction over land disputes, although the process is usually lengthy and expensive, and courts are often corrupted.  As a consequence, the majority of the population uses informal mediation and conciliation processes to resolve disputes. 

Disclaimer: The data displayed on the Land Portal is provided by third parties 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)

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    • 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

    Land: Enhancing Governance for Economic Development (LEGEND)
    Sierra Leone

    The winners have been identified of a £3.65m Challenge Fund funded through DFID’s LEGEND (Land-Enhancing Governance for Economic Development) umbrella programme, to drive innovative and responsible investments in land, in particular agriculture. The fund, managed by KPMG LLP, seeks to improve the effects of land investments on communities in sub-Saharan Africa.


    By: Ray Mwareya

    Date: 5 July 2016

    Source: Thomson Reuters Foundation

    Although the law gives men and women equal property rights, the reality is very different in eastern Mozambique, one of the country's poorest regions.

    In the Chikwidzire district of Manica province, which borders Zimbabwe, deeply patriarchal cultural traditions stipulate that a woman without sons must cede her land to relatives upon her husband's death.


    By: Anabel Lemos
    Date: March 2nd 2016
    Source: Truth Out

    This article was drawn from an interview with Anabela Lemos, and conducted, edited and condensed by Simone Adler.

    Anabela Lemos is cofounder, campaign coordinator and board member of Justiça Ambiental, the Mozambique branch of Friends of the Earth.

    Latest Blog

    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.

    A land rights inauguration ceremony in Mozambique, by Lasse Krantz

    Despite certain progress in recent years a large proportion of the world’s rural population, especially in low and middle-income countries, still does not have statutory recognized rights to the agricultural land and other natural resources they have been using for generations and on which they depend for their livelihoods. They are, therefore, vulnerable to today’s escalating demand for land for large-scale commercial investments as well as to other external claims on their landed resources.

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    Displaying 1 - 6 of 440
    Journal Articles & Books
    May 2017

    Este estudo tem por objectivo analisar as estratégias de produção dos pequenos produtores no Sul do Save, em Moçambique. A análise assenta na recolha de dados primários obtidos a partir da administração, em 2015, de 1200 questionários junto da população alvo, no âmbito de um projecto de investigação em curso no Observatório do Meio Rural (OMR) em Moçambique. A reflexão aqui apresentada inspira-se nos contributos das principais correntes teóricas e estudos empíricos relacionados com as estratégias de produção dos pequenos produtores.

    Journal Articles & Books
    April 2017

    Nos últimos anos os estudos sobre relações de género têm gerado muitos debates, principalmente quando o tema está associado ao meio rural, onde os processos de mudança e de aceitação de transformações de atitudes e comportamentos estão relacionados com a iliteracia, os costumes, tabus, bem como com a divisão social do trabalho configurados por relações de poder marcadas por desigualdades.

    Journal Articles & Books
    March 2017

    Date: mars 2017

    Source: Foncier & Développement

    Malgré une littérature abondante, les acquisitions foncières à grande échelle sont généralement  considérées comme des éléments exogènes aux territoires dans lesquelles elles sont réalisées.
    La plupart des analyses ne s’intéresse, en effet, qu’aux processus de consultation et à la reconnaissance légale des droits fonciers des populations locales.

    Journal Articles & Books
    March 2017

    Em vários países em desenvolvimento, a agricultura é a principal actividade e é tida como a base para o crescimento das suas economias. Em Moçambique, apesar do emergente crescimento da indústria extractiva nos últimos anos e da redução considerável da percentagem de pessoas que tem a agricultura como actividade principal (de 60% em 2005 para 54% em 2012, segundo o Inquérito Agrário Integrado de 2012), a actividade agrícola continua a ser o principal sector económico, empregando a maior a parte da população, sobretudo no meio rural.