Agricultural Land Fragmentation And Land Consolidation Rationality

Adopted about one year after the 1989 Revolution, Land Law (Law 18/1991) represented the starting point of
land reform in Romania. As a result of this law implementation, at the beginning of the year 2000 the private
sector owned 84% of total agricultural land: 82% of arable land, 74% of land under vineyards, 67% of land
under orchards and 87% of land under meadows and pastures.

Besides the benefic social and economic effects, the mutations produced represent a distortion source in the rural area, determining the following, among others: a) crisis of ownership relations – a main aspect of this being the confusion concerning the ownership rights. The prolongation of clearing up these rights represents a major obstacle to a good operation of land market, to agricultural land consolidation implicitly; b) managerial
crisis, manifested by the lack of competitive behaviour, which gives an increased importance to the production
function, to the detriment of commercial function; this results in the increased share of small-sized subsistence farms (households), lack of strategic orientations, etc; c) land market crisis – occurred in the context of the lack of legal and institutional framework concerning the land market operation (credits in advantageous conditions for buying land through the banking system or by establishing specialised banks, solving up the problems in connection to using land as collateral for obtaining credits, mortgage credit stimulation); d) crisis of agricultural economic efficiency – mainly generated by land property excessive fragmentation, large area
(about 55%) owned by old persons or by persons not having their domicile in the rural area, lack of main production factors combination, limited circulation of land capital, lack of an adequate legal and institutional framework, etc.

An analysis of the concrete, social and economic situation of land fragmentation and of agricultural land
consolidation opportunity was conducted in the commune Balaciu; this commune is located in the plain area,
with a population of 3540 inhabitants and a total area of 8462 ha.

In order to identify the rural social actors which can favour land consolidation by their structure, behaviour and functionality, the following typology of rural households has been used as methodology: agricultural households (consisting of persons working only in agriculture); pluriactive households (consisting of persons involved in both agricultural and non-agricultural activities); non-active households (consisting of non-active persons); non-agricultural households (only persons working in other non-agricultural activities).

The survey revealed that the main entities which can become the social actors of rural/agricultural
modernisation, of land consolidation implicitly are the pluriactive and non-agricultural households.

In order to consolidate the agricultural land, there is an obvious and imperative need to conceive an well articulated and coherent framework of support measures, understood and treated as a complex of economic, social, legal and technical measures, aiming at rural community development.

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Author(s): RUSU, Marioara


Organizations(s): Institute of Agricultural Economics, Bucharest