Green Scenery Briefing: Land Investment Deals in Sierra Leone

In 2009 alone, the World Bank estimates that around the world, 56 million hectares of farmland – an area seven times the size of Sierra Leone – were acquired by large-scale investors. More than two-thirds of this demand for farmland is in Africa. This wave of land acquisitions has been hailed by some as a “win-win” situation that can bring agricultural and economic development to the continent, while critics of the trend describe it as neo-colonial “land-grabbing”. In this series of press briefings, Green Scenery examines some key assumptions behind the acquisition of farmland in Sierra Leone, to promote informed public debate. This first briefing note looks into land “availability” in Sierra Leone.