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Reconstruction of China’s Farmland Rights System Based on the ‘Trifurcation of Land Rights’ Reform

by Linlin Li 1,2,*, Rong Tan 1,2 and Cifang Wu 1,2
1
Department of Land Management, School of Public Affairs, Zhejiang University, Zijingang Campus, Hangzhou, 310058, China
2
Land Academy for National Development, Zhejiang University, Zijingang Campus, Hangzhou 310058, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 23 December 2019 / Revised: 8 January 2020 / Accepted: 10 February 2020 / Published: 12 February 2020
With the aim of improving farmland use efficiency without damaging the social function of farmland, Chinese policymakers have proposed the ‘trifurcation of land rights’ reform. When it comes to realization of the law, however, neither the Ownership Model nor the Bundle of Sticks Model can adequately explain this reform. The tree concept of property, which provides a new perspective in delineating property rights based on the function served by specific properties, is thus adopted. We find that this tree concept of property helps to better understand and realize the trifurcated rights on farmland in China. Also, a balance between the social and economic functions of farmland can be reached through reconstruction of the property rights involved, a process which comprises three steps: identification of the nature of the newly-established rights; configuration of the rights and duties of relevant entities; and state intervention in the enforcement of relevant rights with the aim of realizing certain social values. Finally, this paper argues that success of this trifurcated structure requires a systematic design of the Chinese Civil Code. In particular, it requests further improvements in legal rules on farmland lease. View Full-Text
Keywords: property rights; tree concept of property; bifurcation; trifurcation; farmland lease; reconstruction property rights; tree concept of property; bifurcation; trifurcation; farmland lease; reconstruction
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Li, L.; Tan, R.; Wu, C. Reconstruction of China’s Farmland Rights System Based on the ‘Trifurcation of Land Rights’ Reform. Land 2020, 9, 51.

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