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Farmland Ownership Restrictions: Between a Rock and a Hard Place

Bell, Peter N (2014): Farmland Ownership Restrictions: Between a Rock and a Hard Place.

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Abstract

This paper explores unintended consequences of policy that restricts land ownership. I describe certain farmland investment funds that are active in Canada, policy in the Province of Saskatchewan that has restricted ownership since 1974, and how the two are related. I argue that global economic conditions from 1974-2002 created pent-up demand for Saskatchewan farmland, which led to growth in farmland investment after the restrictions were relaxed in 2002. I describe how this situation could repeat itself in the future and put policy makers into a tough situation.

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