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Policy Brief: Women Need Secured Lands to Jump out of Poverty

Land is a critical productive asset, especially for people living in the rural part of Ghana. More than a third of Ghana’s adult population is employed in the agriculture sector where secured access to land is important. Secured land guarantees investment, and facilitates access to financing, which are essential factors for increased agricultural productivity. More importantly, access to land determines who can participate in the local economy, income distribution, and allocation of resources, and significantly shape the livelihoods of poor people.

For women, access to secured land increases their potential to have control over decision-making on matters that affect their well-being and that of their children. Women’s contribution to economic output that could have been missed due to exclusion norms is sustained and ensures that the benefits of resource allocation reach everyone.

Notwithstanding the enormous benefit of increased land access for women, a greater number of women in Ghana continue to experience discrimination in accessing secured land. Women constitute about half of the 11.3 million population in agricultural households, the difference in the number of women who are agricultural holders (control decision-making of farming activities) is stacked since they constitute only 40 percent of agricultural holders, reflecting the significant gender gap in the ownership and control of the land.

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