Brazil, a nation with incredible amounts of fertile land, is currently undergoing an economic boom in the agricultural industry. However, there is one problem. Two different people claim they own the land. The natives want their ancestral rights to the land, while the settlers who have been farming on them and boosting the Brazilian economy. There are 428 Indian land tracts fully registered and 178 that are in the process, but not registered yet. While the government decides what belongs to the natives and what doesn’t, there has been plenty of tension on the ground. At risk is the $124 billion industry (2011), one-fifth of the entire Brazilian economy.
With the Brazilian economy being the sixth biggest in the world, the high demand for agriculture has sparked a greed for as much land and agricultural products as possible. The National Foundation of the Indian, or Funai, is in charge of deciding who gets to be in charge of the land. This organization was created in 1910 to formulate the government’s policies toward the Indians and the demarcation of Indian lands. The appetite for more land has led to violent clashes between farmers and Indians. On May 2nd, 150 Indians invaded the construction site of the Belo Monte dam due to the impact of the construction on their land that they own. Indians occupy approximately twelve percent of the nation’s territory.
With the rate at which this agricultural economy is growing, the land would be a necessity to the Brazilians to keep up with the high demand and opportunity they currently have. The farmers are worried that Funai is targeting productive farmland to give to the Indians, which will not be able to use any production method besides those of its ancestors. The only way that Brazil will be able to keep this economy booming as it is is if they can keep expanding to more land, which will take cooperation and settlements with the Indians. What do you think is going to happen and how will the agricultural economy stay afloat while keeping the Indians happy?