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‘Farm holding redistribution’ ratio: Official land redistribution data in search of corroborating evidence

Dy, Kenneth (2021): ‘Farm holding redistribution’ ratio: Official land redistribution data in search of corroborating evidence.

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The accomplishments of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP) have been criticised for inaccurately portraying the land redistribution in the Philippines. Evidence has largely been anecdotal in nature. Examining the breakdown of the accomplishments as to region and type may reveal several important findings that aggregate accomplishment numbers conceal. But cross-validating official redistribution results with data from a different government agency offers an even more unique way to prove or disprove the claims of agrarian reform authorities. This study complements earlier investigative studies by examining whether the decennial Census of Agriculture and Fisheries can offer corroboratory or contradictory evidence to published accomplishments. A ‘farm holding redistribution’ ratio and ‘land use change’ ratio were computed for this purpose, and analysed together with regional average farm size, farm holding Gini, tenure arrangements across time. Furthermore, it looks at the change in farmland distribution before and during the CARP implementation. After scrutinizing the official accomplishments and CAF data, the findings reveal that indeed, CARP accomplishments failed to translate into landownership for small farm operators. However, there is a dim reflection of achieving its stated goals in regions that implemented more compulsory acquisition and in continuing past programs prior to the enactment of CARP.

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