This paper summarizes results of case studies and panel group discussions carried out in Zimbabwe recently to find out the relationship between land rights and agricultural efficiency, investment and land markets in the smallholder agricultural sector. Results indicate that primary land user rights holders in the three perceived land tenure categories studied do not see security of tenure as a major problem. The major limiting factors cited as reasons for failure to realize full agricultural production potential include lack of or problem with one of the following: draft power, labor, credit, rural-urban migration and the AIDS pandemic among others. The opposite is true of secondary user rights holders such as grown up sons living with parents and some women and other social weak groups who indicate tenure insecurity as a problem of equal magnitude to the other limitations stated above. The results also show some relationship between investment and land rights between the small-scale commercial farming sector and the other two sectors (resettlement and communal). Total credit received is not significantly related to the form of land rights enjoyed by landowners. Land markets in the three categories are thin and 'transaction costs' are high limiting the amount of agricultural land that changed hands. Women access to and control over land, and their bargaining power with their husbands and relatives about land are weak across the three categories studied.


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