This is really about farmland in the long-run, for food security. If you happen to be in Japan, China, India, Malaysia, Vietnam, or South Korea, or an overseas supporter of any of those countries, you'll notice that investing in the arms of Keiretsus, Chaebols, or SOEs that are quietly buying farmland in places like Africa and South America, is one of the most profitable investments you can make - and one of the most effective ways to show solidarity with those countries (consider it a form of remittance!)
In some cases, you will even notice scenarios where all of them almost look like they are agreeing not to criticise each other for doing what they all know they are doing.
In some cases they even outright collaborate in unlikely ways, like how Japan's Itochu and China's COFCO are in an alliance to help each other carry out farmland acquisitions. Everyone has to kind of tread very softly and put their fingers to their mouths and look bewildered if asked any inconvenient questions.
I'll list the Japanese companies
that I know are involved in this operation and will be good investments:
And Indian companies:
- Tata group
- RJ Corp
- Shapoorji Pallonji & Co
- McLeod Russel India
- Borelli Tea Holdings
- Karuturi Global
- Rana Sugars
I'll leave it up to Verv and Igor to cover China and South Korea's actors, since they'd know those better than I would.
I want to comment on two concerns:
- The concern of accidentally buying infertile land: This is becoming not so much of a concern - what looked like a bubble of possible-infertile land purchases at first, turns out to be less so, since Asian companies now possess the technology to do things such as desalinate land, and other such things (both Japan and India can do it now - I assume China can as well).
- The ethical concern: Isn't it bizarre that in so many African states there are starving people, and yet the leaders of those states turn around and let Asians take up "999 year" (seriously) leases on farmland in large swathes? Well, to quote the fictional female samurai Tsukikage Ran: "Some forms of stupidity can only result in death."
And wait until you hear about the plans to build special Asian-administrated cities in Africa, where Africans will have to apply to enter and get housing and schooling and work there, but it will carry special rules like 'you can only take out health insurance on one child'.
Africans are walking right into this one, so they will have no one to blame but themselves
when they realise it. The logic of Karl Pearson's ethnically-motivated land acquisitions is playing out as we speak.