Bolivia - Context and Land Governance | Land Portal | Securing Land Rights Through Open Data

Land has always been a fundamental issue in Bolivia. It is the backbone of demands by the country’s peasant and indigenous movements. Thus, it also has been part of government programs and of other national actors´ agendas.

The debate was traditionally focused on Agrarian Reform, which establishes that "the land belongs to those who work it.” For this reason, it created tensions between peasants and landowners. However, in recent years, as the rights of Indigenous Peoples were increasingly recognized, the right to territory was expressed as a type of property right. Special attention was also given to the use of natural resources for indigenous populations. This has made agrarian land tenure more complex, with three fundamental actors (peasants, indigenous people and businesspeople) competing against each other for land and rights to land. Now, economic interests are vying for control of the country’s most productive lands, the expansion of agrarian capitalism is in the hands of national and transnational corporation, and national and subnational governments are implementing contradictory policies. There is growing debate over food security and sovereignty, and on the need to produce healthy and nutritious food for the country's population.

According to the latest agricultural census of 2013, Bolivia has 34.6 million hectares that are registered by Agricultural Production Units (UPA, by its initials in Spanish), and these represent 31.5% of the country’s land surface. Of these, 66.1% are located in the lowlands, mainly in the departments of Santa Cruz and Beni.

Within this land total, the area of agricultural use reaches 5.9 million hectares, of which a little less than half is cultivated in summer (2,8) and the rest is fallow or at rest. Livestock activities occupies 13.2 million hectares, of which the majority (82%) are natural pastures and the rest are cultivated. The land that can be used in forestry activities is 13.8 million hectares, mainly forests, and the area for non-agricultural activities is 2.2 million hectares.

For the 2012-2013 period, the crops that used the largest area are agribusiness, agrochemicals and transgenics in the country's lowlands: soybean, with 1.27 million hectares, corn with 0.39 million hectares, sunflower with 0.28 million, sorghum with 0.25 million, rice with 0.18 million, and sugar cane with 0.15 million hectares. In addition, considering valley and altiplano crops, potato plays an important role, with 0.17 million hectares, as well as quinoa with 0.1 million.

In terms of livestock, activities are concentrated in bovine, ovine, porcine, caprine, camelid and other species. Particularly noteworthy is the production of cattle. As of 2013, there were an estimated 8.3 million cows and 6.3 million sheep. 

Forest land owned by Indigenous Peoples and local communities: Forests are considered to be “owned” where communities have full legal rights to secure their claims to forests, defined in RRI’s rese

Measurement unit: 
Million ha

GDP per capita based on purchasing power parity (PPP). PPP GDP is gross domestic product converted to international dollars using purchasing power parity rates.

Measurement unit: 
PPP$ 2011

This indicator presents the score of the "Land Owership" component of the Global Open Data Index (GODI) 2016/2017. 

Measurement unit: 
Index (0; 100)

This indicator measures the weghted proportion (%) of respondants who have been requested to paid a bribe, among those who contacted land services.

Measurement unit: 
1'000 ha

Estimate of the percent of total Indigenous and Community Lands - formally recognised by the State - as a percentage of the country's total land area.

Measurement unit: 
Percentage (%)

This indicator is a sub-component of the Restricted Resources and Entitlements Indicator and measures whether women and men have equal and secure access to land use, control and ownership.

Measurement unit: 
Index (0; 1)

Rural population refers to the share (%) of people living in rural areas as defined by national statistical offices. It is calculated as the ratio between Urban Population and Total Population.

Measurement unit: 
Percentage (%)

This indicator measures the proportion of terrestrial protected areas as a share of the total land area in a country.

Measurement unit: 
% of total land area
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Forest land owned by Indigenous Peoples and local communities: Forests are considered to be “owned” where communities have full legal rights to secure their claims to forests, defined in RRI’s rese

Measurement unit: 
Million ha
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Naturally regenerated forest of native species (1'000 Ha), where there are no clearly visible indications of human activities and the ecological processes are not significantly disturbed.

Measurement unit: 
1'000 Ha
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Arable land (1'000 Ha) is the land under temporary agricultural crops (multiple-cropped areas are counted only once), temporary meadows for mowing or pasture, land under market and kitchen gardens

Measurement unit: 
1'000 ha

It measures the area (1'000 Ha) covered by forest.

Measurement unit: 
1'000 ha

Land area is the total area (1'000 Ha) of the country excluding area under inland water bodies.

Measurement unit: 
1'000 ha

Land used permanently (five years or more) to grow herbaceous forage crops through cultivation or naturally (wild prairie or grazing land).

Measurement unit: 
1'000 ha

Land cultivated with long-term crops which do not have to be replanted for several years (such as cocoa and coffee), land under trees and shrubs producing flowers (such as roses and jasmine), and n

Measurement unit: 
1'000 Ha

Land Governance Assessment Framework (LGAF)

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    Legend
    • Very Good Practice
    • Good Practice
    • Weak Practice
    • Very Weak Practice
    • Missing Value

    Voluntary Guidelines on the Responsible Governance of Tenure of Land, Fisheries and Forests (VGGT)


    Legend: National laws adoption of the VGGT principle
    • Fully adopt
    • Partially adopt
    • Not adopted
    • Missing Value

    Note: The Voluntary Guidelines on the Responsible Governance of Tenure of Land, Fisheries, and Forests in the Context of National Food Security (The VGGTs) were endorsed by the Committee on World Food Security in 2012.

    The "VGGT indicators" dataset has been created by Nicholas K. Tagliarino, PhD Candidate at the University of Groningen, with support from Daniel Babare and Myat Noe (LLB Students, University of Groningen). The indicators assess national laws in 50 countries across Asia, Africa, and Latin America against international standards on expropriation, compensation, and resettlement as established by Section 16 of the VGGTs.

    Each indicator relates to a principle established in section 16 of the VGGTs. Hold the mouse against the small "i" button above for a more detailed explanation of the indicator.

    Answering the questions posed by these indicators entails analyzing a broad range of national-level laws, including national constitutions, land acquisition acts, land acts, community land acts, agricultural land acts, land use regulations, and some court decisions.

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    Disclaimer: The data displayed on the Land Portal is provided by third parties indicated as the data source or as the data provider. The Land Portal team is constantly working to ensure the highest possible standard of data quality and accuracy, yet the data is by its nature approximate and will contain some inaccuracies. The data may contain errors introduced by the data provider(s) and/or by the Land Portal team. In addition, this page allows you to compare data from different sources, but not all indicators are necessarily statistically comparable. The Land Portal Foundation (A) expressly disclaims the accuracy, adequacy, or completeness of any data and (B) shall not be liable for any errors, omissions or other defects in, delays or interruptions in such data, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon. Neither the Land Portal Foundation nor any of its data providers will be liable for any damages relating to your use of the data provided herein.