After remarkable social and economic reconstruction since 1994, Rwanda aspires to become a middle income country by 2020 with a strong focus on inclusive growth. In this context the Government of Rwanda (GoR) has recognized the critical nature of land policy and agricultural growth. The Economic Development and Poverty Reduction Strategy (EDPRS) identifies higher agricultural productivity and transformation of the sector towards high value added as a key pillar and points towards land registration as a critical element to achieve this goal by increasing productivity of land use, reducing conflict, empowering women, and improving overall governance. Agriculture accounts for about 36 percent of Rwanda's GDP, 80 percent of employment, and, in 2010, 45 percent of foreign exchange earnings. It also provides 90 percent of the country's food needs. Land Tenure Regularization (LTR) program in 2009, was designed-after extensive piloting-to register the country's estimated 10 million parcels. This ambitious program, which has become a model for other countries, has the potential to improve the livelihoods of millions of Rwandans. It also highlights that doing so will require decisions to overcome challenges in a number of areas including: (1) increasing the protection of potentially vulnerable groups such as traditionally married women; (2) ensuring the long term sustainability of the land records by building adequate capacity of the decentralized administration and clarifying law provisions; and (3) linking the mortgage and land registries. Continued monitoring will help ensure that progress in doing so is tracked and obstacles to achieving desired impacts identified early.
Ali, D.A.; Deininger, K.; Duponchel, M.; Ronchi, L. How Land Tenure Regularization can contribute to agricultural growth in Rwanda. The World Bank, Washington DC, USA (2012) [Case Study 73155]