This exploratory report investigates how the current surge in land acquisitions and investments by foreign countries, sovereign wealth funds and private corporations, as well as domestic investors, will affect transboundary water management, an area where current knowledge is sparse. The majority of land deals tend to be made in places with low land lease prices, weak legislation, inexpensive labour and relative abundance of land and water and very few include regulations or agreements for water used on the acquired territories. With many of the largest land leasing countries located on the transboundary water basins, shared waters will be affected with unknown implications for regional relations. Two case illustrations in the Nile and Niger basin regions are presented to explore how land acquisitions have affected global, regional, national and local actors in those areas and point out key questions that require more research.
Report published in 2012.