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Food Security in the Middle East$
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Zahra Babar and Suzi Mirgani

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199361786

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199361786.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 24 July 2021

Win-Win Versus Lose-Lose

Win-Win Versus Lose-Lose

Investments in Foreign Agriculture as a Food Security Strategy of the Arab States of the Persian Gulf

(p.221) 9 Win-Win Versus Lose-Lose
Food Security in the Middle East

Mary Ann Tétreault

Deborah L. Wheeler

Benjamin Shepherd

Oxford University Press

Food security is crucial for the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries operating a distributive social contract predicated on citizen wellbeing and prosperity in return for political acquiescence. This rentier bargain was threatened by the surge in food prices in 2008, leading some Gulf countries to invest in agricultural projects in developing countries. This study identifies the risks that such foreign land investments pose to the investor as well as to this chapter’s case study countries of Ethiopia and Cambodia. Criticisms of overseas agricultural investment centre on corruption; expropriation of land from local populations who are often subject to forcible eviction with minimal compensation; and a lack of provision for local people’s livelihoods or even access to food after they have been evicted. Yet, GCC states could reshape foreign investment policies as a means of improving productivity as well as bolstering economic development in impoverished rural areas of less-developed countries.

Keywords:   food security, Gulf Cooperation Council, rentier bargain, foreign land investments, Ethiopia, Cambodia, forcible eviction, economic development

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