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Tenure Insecurity

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A wide range of difficulties, including conflict, has left the West African country of Liberia one of the poorest in Sub Saharan Africa. GDP per capita in 2017 was US$817 (PPP, current international dollar) despite the country having significant natural resource wealth. In the same year, agriculture, forestry and fishing contributed 34% to GDP and employed 43% of the total working population.

Land and natural resource allocation were key issues in the 14-year civil war. But since the end of the war in 2003, Liberians have been reconstructing the country, including via land and resource allocation reforms. Unfortunately, progress has been held up by a range of challenges, including the Ebola epidemic in 2014.

The land tenure system in Liberia follows longstanding social divisions: the indigenous population use customary systems, while the urban elite use a Western statutory system of land ownership based on individual titles. Women hold land in much lower proportions than men and tend to access land through their husbands.

Statistical Analysis

Prindex’s results show that 43% of respondents felt insecure about their tenure rights in 2018 – an equivalent of 1 million people aged 18 or over, and the second highest out of the first 15 countries. Fifty one percent of the sample interviewed felt secure about their property rights and the remaining 6% refused or did not know how to answer the question.

The tables and diagrams below show key Prindex results for Liberia or you can download an infographic.


All respondents

All respondents

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Analysing Tenure Insecurity by category

Tenure type
Employment type
Income adequacy


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