They don’t have land – Government's role is to make both parties work together to utilize this land, for both to benefit from their respective inputs.
Going back to basics of Capitalism, land labor and capital, is the basic principle that is as old as human beings itself, and in Sri Lanka we have not been able to grasp this, so that it will benefit the owners of each. Seems odd doesn’t?
So I have land, but I don’t have clear title as it is a Swarnabhoomi property, that I am in possession of and am farming, and I can hold onto it as long as I am working on this property, but all I have to show is just one plant on 5 acres of land and say I am planting. However, physically I cannot farm, so I go and do another job to earn a living, say in Colombo, but leave my property empty and uncultivated, as I am afraid that I will lose it if I abandon it or give it to someone else to cultivate, so I don’t do anything. Million hectares of this, YES.
So I am effectively the owner, but my PROPERTY RIGHTS ARE NOT SECURE, so I cannot lend it (RENT IT) to someone else even for even Rs 1,000 a year to farm, as the tenant may claim he is farming and refuse to leave it, and leave me landless, losing that which my father left me!
He is the supplier of labor, but he has no land. He does not have the means (FINANCE) to buy land even though he is unemployed and has a knowledge of farming. I the bank will not lend him to buy the land, as it is a Swarnabhoomi Property that Banks don’t lend on, so I cannot utilize my skills productively.
This is what the Government MUST do as part of the current process of giving deeds to those living on state land. They must at the same time as handing out the deeds give a CLEAR LETTER WITH THE DEEDS, which forms a right, where I can rent my land, to someone else at a rent that I can agree with a tenant farmer, for a time period, which will be an enforceable contract in LAW. So if the agreement says for 5 years I can receive Rs50,000 a year as rent. Then at the end of the 5 years, I either RE-NOGOTIATE on different terms, or if I don’t, I get the land back AUTOMATICALLY as per the agreement and it is enforceable. The tenant has no rights when the contract ends and has to leave.
In this way the the banks looking at the lease can lend the owner based on the title for a business, the tenant farmer can be lent money to work the land, to buy a tractor on the strength of an enforceable lease, and so the ECONOMY BENEFITS. None of this is presently possible. What must the Govt do? Give the present OWNER CLEAR TITLE THAT CANNOT BE TAKEN AWAY (property rights) and allow an enforceable contract to benefit both parties. Result economic activity that previously did not happen starts!!! HEY GDP UP!