Vacant Fallow and Virgin Land (VFV) Handbook

This is an instruction manual which sets out the procedure by which you can apply for a use right on Vacant Fallow and Virgin Land (VFV). This document has been written following the passing of a key amendment on September 11 2018 to the 2012 VFV law. VFV as a category of land is contentious. Deciding whether to apply for a use right on VFV land is difficult. Making an application will not be for everyone. The main part of the guide is a technical manual to take you through the process of how to apply. This opening section contains a brief set of pointers to help you decide if you should apply. This instruction manual is intended for small hold farmers and animal breeders all over the country who wish to use this legal process. It only applies to small holder farmers which means those who are claiming less than 50 acres. In September 2018, the Myanmar government passed an amendment to the 2012 Vacant, Fallow, and Virgin Land (VFV) law that stipulated that all smallholder farmers currently using VFV land must submit an application for the right to use the land by March 3, 2019. Anyone who fails to do so may be evicted. This manual serves to help farmers determine if an application for use of VFV land is in their best interest and if so, guides them through the process. It draws on the experiences of Namati and partners’ paralegals who have been helping farmers with cases related to the VFV law since 2013.

This guide was written based on the field experience of Namati’s paralegals who have been supporting farmers and working on cases related to VFV land in Myanmar since 2013.