24/10/2011 Newsnight


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It's just like old times, a Tory It's just like old times, a Tory


rebellion on Europe. How damaged is the Prime Minister's authority, and


why shouldn't the British people have a vote on whether they want to


be part of the EU? The ayes to the right, 111, the no


s to the left, 483, the no nos have it. It looks as if there were about


180 Conservative rebels. This is what you get when you mention Senor


Berlusconi around Brussels. Is the single currency in the hands of a


leader seen as a clown by many of his peers.


Europe's banks aren't laughing tonight. They have been asked to


lose two-thirds of the money they lent to Greece. Can that be done


without crashing the markets. Also tonight: If you increase the


yields in Africa to what the world needs, Africa would become a net


exporter of food. As the world population tops seven billion, can


Africa really Feed The World. The Prime Minister got his way in


Parliament tonight. A few minutes ago, the attempt to get a


referendum on membership of the European Union was defeated, only


with the votes of Labour and Liberal Democrat MPs, and with


dozens of Conservatives rejecting the authority of David Cameron,


saying their primary duty was to constituents. The debate was


passionate, but most passionate as Conservative MPs argued among


themselves. I'm not entirely sure what is the most significant


feature of what went on behind me in the House of Commons today. Was


it the fact that there was no significant Government business at


stake? Indeed, no Government business or any business of any


description, no vote tonight was going to compel anyone to do


anything. Or was it the fact that there was never any danger of David


Cameron losing the vote. As we have seen, he won it by 4-1. He knew


that Labour and the Liberal Democrats were going to offset any


rebellion from his party. And yet, still, he forced a three-line whip


on the issue. There is considerable anger among MPs on that tonight.


But I was speaking to one person, who is particularly close to David


Cameron, a little earlier, who said they had absolutely no choice but


to have the three-line whip, anything less would show you were


not serious. You can't have the House of Commons saying stuff and


pretend it doesn't mean anything. But out of all the nothingness


today, seemingly unpromising material, we have a rebellion.


Something like 80 Conservative MPs defying a three-line whip.


Something like another 15 abstaining, still in defiance of


what the leadership wanted. Out of this today we have people talking


about this being a profoundly important day in the history of


David Cameron's leadership. The hoaxy cokey referendum. Three


options, in, out, or shake it all about. Or as Parliament had it,


renegotiate the terms in order to create a new relationship, based on


trade and co-operation. All day Conservative whips have been trying


to persuade MPs not to shake anything all about, least of all-


party unity. Aiden Burly is one of the ministerial aides or


parliamentary private secretaries, called in for a meeting with the


Prime Minister. I have had a very difficult weekend, I will support


the Government, but as a 32-year- old new MP, I find it strange that


we haven't had a say on this issue since four years before I was born.


I think there is a bit of frustration from my generation of


politicians that the British people haven't had their say on this issue.


It is an issue the people will have to have a referendum on at some


point in the future. Not all were convinced, Adam Holloway was


private secretary to the Europe Minister, not any more he isn't?


I'm not prepared to go back on my word to my constituents. I'm really


staggered that loyal people like me have actually been put in this


position. If Britain's future as an independent country is not a proper


matter for a referendum, then I have absolutely no idea what is.


This aim after a rather conciliatory speech by the Prime


Minister. Mr Cameron was fresh from a row with Nicolas Sarkozy, that


would have no doubt cheered his party no end. In the chamber he


told his MPs, look, we disagree with timing, not objectives.


share the yearning for fundamental reform, and I am determined to


deliver it. Those who are supporting today's motion, but


don't actually want to leave the EU, I say to you this, I respect your


views, we disagree with ends, not about means. I support your aims.


Like you, I want to see fundamental reform, like you, I want to


refashion our membership of the EU, so it better service our nation's


interests. The time for reform is coming, that is the prize. Let us


not be distracted from seizing it. It is tempting to see this


referendum debate as a rekindling of the old Conservative Euro-


sceptic fire that engulfed the party in the 90s. It is not that.


For a start, the Conservative Party today is more united than it has


ever been on Europe. What they are divided on is David Cameron, and


specifically whether he can be trusted to deliver what they want


on Europe. The public debate, and private conversations today, have


been punctuated by this Cameron scepticism. Is it any wonder that


on Conservative home website today, a poll of Conservative Party


members now suggests that two third of Conservative Party members do


not believe that the present Government has any intention of


repatriating powers from Europe. I have to say to Her Majesty's front


bench tonight, shame on you. So it is for us backbenchers, to


say to Her Majesty's Government, stiffen your sinews, summon up the


blood, and imitate the action of a tiger, that is how you should


behave towards our European partners, not like bagpuss. I now


invite David Cameron to the rost trum. Why the mistrust? David


Cameron started off sounding as Euro-sceptic as any of these MPs,


complete with big cat references. They want a federalist pussy cat,


not a British Lion. Once leader of the opposition, remember, he


promised a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty. I'm pushing for that


referendum, that is the case this week, next week, that won't change.


That commitment was dropped once the Lisbon Treaty was ratified. But,


that simply is not good enough, according to some Conservatives.


MPs don't keep their promise, say the cynics, you say whatever you


say to get elected, they cry. Today is our chance to show the cynics


that they are wrong. All three parties until recently promised the


people a referendum on the EU. There is no point in clever word


play, there is no point in reading the clever brief from the Foreign


Office officials. It was what most people understood that we were


going to give them a referendum. That's what MPs in all parties


wanted the people to believe. It is the impression we deliberately


conveyed. This evening we have a chance to keep our promises. There


we have the result, we know the Government has won this very


comfortably, Downing Street is suggesting that something like 81


Conservatives defied their whip. What does it all mean? I was chat


to go one cabinet minister on their way in to vote who seemed to


suggest this would have a very limited shelf life, people would


have forgotten about it in a few weeks. I'm not so sure. The anger


that came out in the dewait today, I think will - debate today, I


think, will take a long time to go away. Rebellion is addictive, we


have seen it in previous administrations. Under Tony Blair,


one of the experts who looked at the rebellions has pointed out it


took him six years where he got to the point of a rebellion of 80


people. His majority was a lot bigger. It will take a lot of time,


from the anger I have heard, from people in private, on the


Conservative backbenches, for that anger to go away.


Standing in a corridor in Westminster, to try to explain


what's going on, Adam Holloway, who resigned today as a parliamentary


private secretary, and the Deputy Chairman of the Conservative Party.


Adam Holloway you have effectively chucked away any ministerial career,


why? I don't think I was being earmarked for secretary of defence.


It is straight forward, since I went to my constituency, seven


years ago, I have been banging on to people when they have asked, and


when they haven't, saying of course we should have a referendum on the


membership of the E. I would personally like to renegotiate. And


frankly, when the opportunity to vote on something, even a non-


binding backbench motion came up, I would have felt pretty ridiculous


with my friends in Gravesend, North Fleet and the villages, for not


supporting it. Do you believe some of your colleagues have not carried


out their constituents' wishes if they have voted with the


Government? I can only talk about my own circumstances and how I feel


about it, having been on their shoulders for the last 17 years.


From my perspective, with the position I have, and the


relationship I have with people in my area, it would be very difficult


for me not to have done what I did today. Is there any resentment on


your part that the way the leadership has behaved has made it


necessary for you to behave like this? They are a lot cleverer than


I am, perhaps they could have found a way out for people like me, who


have actually been extremely loyal to Cameron. I want him and the


country to do well. I'm not being a fish co-fant because I'm Newsnight


and he - and he might be watching. I think he's doing a brilliant job


in difficult circumstances. It is a matter of conscience for you?


a bit grand, but it is about my relationship with my constituents.


Michael Fallon, you voted, loyally, with the Government, what do you


think your constituents wanted you to vote? Our constituents were not


promised a referendum on whether we should leave the European Union,


that was not in our manifesto. On the contrary, they were told we


would do everything we could to repatriate powers, and to make sure


there would be a referendum lock if any further powers were transferred.


That referendum lock is already in place. We passed an act of


Parliament now, stopping any future powers being transferred. So we


fulfilled to our constituents that part of the bargain. There are a


lot of colleagues, Adam, a lot of Conservative and Labour colleagues,


who feel extremely passionately about this, but in the end, that


motion tonight was very strongly defeated. And just remind us, how


far is your constituency from Adam Holloway's constituency? I think


there are a few. We touch. They are a few miles inbetween. How can you


have come to such completely contradictory conclusions then?


Conservative manifesto was clear, we never promised a referendum,


that has never been Conservative policy. Conservatives have never


advocated leaving the European Union, there is too much trade at


stake, there are millions of jobs at stake there. There is an awful


lot of investment in our country at stake, because we are part of this


huge single market. What we have always said and was in the


manifesto is we want a much better deal for Britain from our


membership of the European Union. That is what David Cameron spelt


out tonight. There is a huge prize at stake here, the treaty is now


going to have to be revised, because the eurozone is under


pressure. There is a big opportunity here now to advance


national interests. We think we ought to be seizing that, rather


than going backwards over the old debates of whether we should be in


or out. Talking of seizing opportunities, which powers to you


propose to repatriate, and when? have already spoken about the need


to repatriate some of the quite unnecessary stuff decided at the


union - European level, employment legislation, anything that stops


you employing people or stops the labour force being more flexible.


There was a paper put to the Government this weekend that said


to match the United States Europe had to be more flexible and more


competitive. That is the kind of change we need to see in Europe.


The way to do that, like it or not, is to engage with Europe, and take


this opportunity that is now opening up to ensure that British


national interests are, not just protebgtd, but advanced. How is it


that 80 people who got elected on the same manifesto as you have come


to a different conclusion? That is a minority of the parliamentary


party. It is still a lot of people. Already David Cameron has secured


the repatriation of one big power, which was our involvement in the


bailout mechanism. That is back. We already have an act of Parliament


securing a referendum lock, saying you don't have to trust politicians


in future, if there is any transfer of competence to Brussels, there


has to be a referendum. That is now part of the British constitution.


Two of those pledges in our manifesto have already been put


into practice, I think, therefore, we can trust David Cameron, and his


leadership, now to take this forward, and use the opportunities


that are opening up in Europe, because of the way the eurozone is


now in crisis, to advance our interests and get what we want, a


much better deal for the British economy. All this raises


fascinating questions about what ought to be the relationship with


the organisation that was an economic community when we joined t


and is now a political union. It was all too much for the French


President, who at the weekend, lost whatever patience he possesses and


told David Cameron he should shut up, they are sick of him citsigs


and telling them what to do. What is our role in Europe if not to


carp from the side lines. Once again, Britain seems to be


carving out its own path, a branch line in that great European way


ahead. It is yet another two-track solution that Downing Street wants.


But this time with a twist. The UK seeks, once more, to limit its


integration in the European product, just as it did with the border


control regime, or the formation of the euro. The twist this time now


is that the Britain is trying to tell those at the very centre of


the network how to run their business. Crucially, my European


colleagues need to accept the remorseless knowledge of monetary


union that leads from the single currency into greater fiscal


integration. In Britain's view, the continuing Greek crisis just


underlines the case for greater fiscal union, to even out the


imbalances between north and south. But as the importance of stability


funds grows, and Germany insists on being able to punish countries that


spend too freely, the EU is moving towards a more formal financial


arrangement. Treaty change can only happen if it is agreed by all 27


member states of the European Union, and any treaty change, as the last


treaty change did, is an opportunity for Britain to advance


our national interest. This attitude was too much for President


Sarkozy, who lambasted David Cameron yesterday for trying to


tell the eurozone countries what to do. So what is the UK's national


interest in this eurodebate? first priority, in responding to


treaty changes, aimed at stablising the eurozone, will be to protect


the rights of those countries in the EU, but outside the eurozone,


over decisions affecting them, and to prevent damage to the financial


services industry, so important to the economy of this country. There


are, though, some other British agendas, the financial crisis


increases Germany's clout in Europe. Will the euro increasingly run to a


German timetable? Certainly Poland and Sweden share some of Britain's


concerns. That increased integration means greater German


power. On Wednesday, those inside and


outside the euro will try to find common ground in Brussels. None of


the Governments in the EU wants to see the euro implode, but


increasingly the price of keeping it alive, looks like a profound


realignment of power within Europe. To help us work out where we belong


in this new Europe is the former Chancellor of the Exchequer, Norman


Lamont. The economist, David Rennie, and the Labour MP, Gisela Stuart,


who once was entrusted with the responsibility of trying to draw up


a new European constitution. David Rennie, if this is resolved, this


euro crisis, it will mean at the end of it we are more marginal,


won't it? It will, not just marginal in an in and out sense.


The danger is the 17 countries that use the single currency, if you


look at them and compare them to the whole of the Europe there is a


lot of people missing from the table, the Swedes, the Dutch. This


worries them, they don't want to be stuck with just the French and the


club med countries. Because of the pressures we saw on David Cameron,


he can't come in and shape the rules from the main table. Do you


count yourself as German, British? Bavarian. We have all dark secrets


I suppose! This is part of the onward march of Germany in Europe,


isn't it? You started off by saying if this euro crisis is involved.


is a big if, I agree. You still assume that bailouts and all these


things will solve the problem, which is one of periphery countries


not being able to become competitive again. And what you


have is a construct that simply will not work. It is economically,


in its tensions, not sustainable. Germany is in the dreadful position,


even if they wanted to, their economy is not big enough to


permanentry bail them out. They get no thanks for attempting to bail


out, or trying to tell the other countries how to run things. Do you


think our attitude towards German power in Europe has changed?


don't think our attitude towards German power has changed, I think


Germany has come through a long period where it was reuniting the


east with the west, and we tended to write Germany off too easily. We


tended to talk about the German economy becoming a bit sclerotic, I


e I always felt the same old strong Germany would reemerge. Germany is


by far the most competitive country and export orientated in Europe. It


is natural it is the dominant power in the eurozone.


Is the fact we don't know how this euro crisis will be resolved,


perhaps it makes the whole of this conversation we are having at the


moment completely pointless, because we don't know on what basis


we are predicating the discussion. Assuming some sort of resolution


can be found, and it is a big assumption, everyone agrees, we are


more marginalised at the end of it, aren't we? You are either in


something or not. We are affected by the American economy, you could


say we are marginalised by it. We have made a decision not to join


the euro. We can't grumble then if there are some decisions that have


secondary effects on us. Where our interests lie, and the Economist


Magazine is careful to point it out. We have to make sure we still have


a power of veto on things like tax yaix, things that fect affect us on


the in- taxation, and things that affect us on the European market.


We have to make sure the eurozone doesn't become protectionist on


that part of the European Union. Are we marginalised? I fear we are,


and some of the people in the House of Commons who know less than


Gisela Stuart here. They hear the argument and say it is done let's


not put money into saving it. were in favour of the euro, weren't


you? Not for Britain, we were not in favour of Britain joining the


euro. It doesn't matter who you are in favour of, it is in crisis


without it? If you want a sensible debate, you have to concede that


people like Lord Laming who were sceptical about the way the euro


was constructed look far more correct than the boosters for the


euros, you can concede that debate and move on. When Lord Laming says


we are neither in or out, we are not just next to Europe, we do 50%


of our trade with them, and 40% with the eurozone. And negotiations


that could come out of the hardline France and Germany, grabbing bits


of business out of the City of London, saying if you want to do


euro-dominated business, it has to be done in Frankfurt and Paris.


This affects us an enormous amount. It is too easy to say we will do


what we need to do, it does matter. You think there is a real limit to


how semi-detatched you can become? If you are interested in keeping


jobs here. I wasn't contradicting that, I was saying we have to be


careful by protecting our position in the single market and vis a vis


taxation. When I said we were in or out, I was talking about the euro,


we can't complain if they make some decisions that affect them on their


own. I think, quite honestly, the reaction of Sarkozy to David


Cameron, I'm amazed it hasn't happened before. We can't go around


telling people what to do when we are not part of it. He's right,


isn't he? Of course he's right. can't be more and more


protectionism. We talk about all that matters is trade with Europe,


it is the trade with the rest of the world. The single market is too


protectionist. We have a currency that won't make it competitive.


Even if every member-state in the eurozon was like the Germans, it


would be disastrous, because it is built on export, somebody has to


import. The marginalisation is a red herring, if you are a UK, you


are only central in the European argument if you are economically


successful, geographically you are not. You go back to the his treesm


this is a construct fine in the 1970s - history, this is construct


is fine in the 1970s, it would have been a functioning, proper currency.


It isn't. What is dangerous about what happened in the Commons today,


voters are watching and being offered a full spill. They are told


there is this magical option of this loose free trade option. That


is what the British are always wanted. Can't we have a


relationship like Norway and Switzerland? We are more important


than they are. They don't have a fantastic relationship when getting


what they wanton banking? Switzerland has had a wretched few


years on things like banking secrecy because they are not at the


able. We are bigger than that. We have to be there making sure the


single market works for us. reality is we are a larger


proportion of its GDP is trade with Europe. They, actually, have had a


very successful economy in recent years. Look at the growth statistic,


and the strength of the Swiss franc. Switzerland is a country to be


envied rather than to be pittied and criticised. You just think of


cuckoo clocks and look in amazement, but Switzerland has high-tech and


good growth records. Switzerland is a economy and also Norway to be


envied, but Norway has natural resources. North Sea oil.


change that is important, as a result of this crisis you will see


a degree of fiscal integration in Europe. That changes our


relationship. It also gives us an teent, as the Prime Minister said,


when - an opportunity, as the Prime Minister said, to get some powers


repatriated. What troubles me is the minute David Cameron and George


Osborne started talking about a deeper political integration


between Britain and France for Britain's interest. We accepted a


Europe which had never been the UK's idea of Europe, a Europe


dominated by a few countries. I would say is that how we think the


future looks like. You have the French and Germany block dictating


for everybody. It will happen, not because we suggest it should happen,


but because France and Germany will in the end want it to happen. There


will be more surveillance of other country's budgets. It won't be a


full fiscal union but it will work in that direction. It is what the


Germans are moving towards. don't have a luxury of saying it


doesn't matter if the euro survives or not. If this is what saves it


this will happen. We have to try to make it work some what in its


interests. We can't be Switzerland, the difference is Switzerland is


small and get to be a parasite on the single market. Its absence


makes no difference to free market versus protectionist. Britain's


absence would swing the action towards a French state vision.


David Cameron's trying to take part in this has been weakened by the


result? You have to assume he's going into the room with one hand


tied behind his back. He can't pay- to-play, and advance in the next


stages of saving the euro. You are completely for getting the


electorate of Europe. In Spain you have elections, in Greece you have


elections, Portugal, Ireland, they kick out their Government, they see


no change in policy, they see austerity and no improvement. These


economic models also have a political Israelty. We are storing


up enormous trouble in some - reality, we are storing up enormous


trouble when they see their politicians are being unaccountable.


It will come and bite us. I agree. Don't just listen, tell them the


truth. As was pointed out to the fans of a


referendum. The British debate is like arguing over the winning


diagram for your house, while the roof is on hire. The Financial


Times is reporting tomorrow, that Germany, France, the IMF and the


European Central Bank are asking institutions holding Greek debt to


be prepared to lose nearly two- thirds of their money. In Italy,


meanwhile, Prime Minister Berlusconi even had to skip a court


appearance to hold a cabinet meeting to try to agree measure


that is might satisfy the French and Germans. Mistakes are higher


than - the stakes are higher than they have ever been and rising.


There are three things they need to do on Wednesday at the second


summit, they need to decide how much Greek debt gets written off,


how much money do you throw at Europe's banks to stop them falling


off as the debt write-off hits them. How do you provide a fire blanket


to throw over the European cry staiction Italy out of the crisis


zone. The details in the last 24 hours have become clearer. In the


first case on Greek debt it is 60% of a write-off, a haircut they are


asked for. We reported this on Friday night. Now we have learned


over the weekend officials have begun these discussions with


European banks. On the bank bailout, you have got a recapitalisation


fund for the European banks of 108 billion, that was agreed yesterday


afternoon at the summit. That will be used to prop up banks, from


national treasures and international funds. We are being


to pay 1.4 trillion. They have only got half a trillion, so they have


so make a clever and opaque financial vehicle. We don't know


how they are going to do it. We know the acronym, which is SPIV.


How close are they to sort iting out? I should ask you what -


Sorting it out. I should ask you what it means to. I'm not sure it


translates into another European language. They are close, to do it


they will have to make a bonfire of a lot of the rules, a lot of the


denial they were going through three weeks ago. A lot of the


vanties. In fact, there might even be bonfires. First of all, Athens,


the Greek banks, most have lost 20% of their value today. This is a


signal the Greek banks are more or less finished. They have to be


nationalised rae tappalised quickly. They are the ones in line -


recapitalised quickly, they are the ones that loaned the money to


grease. Then there is the taking of Italy


out of the market so they don't have to keep borough. There was an


emergency meeting in Italy tonight, Berlusconi was there. One of the


great parties in the coalition is the northern league, and has


proposed in the past banning kebab shops on the grounds of cultural


purity. How do you think it went down with them to be told that the


Germans and French had told Italy to impose a retirement at 67, it


didn't go down well. Despite the emergency nature of the Italian


cabinet there were no decisions announced at the end of it.


To try to help shed some light on how much trouble European banks


might be in is Thomas Huertas, who until last month was head of the


European banking authority. How much money do you think the


European banks need? They estimate, as your colleague has indicated,


108 billion euros. That comes about from marking the Government bond


positions of the European banks to market. And taking into account the


money they may need if the economy deteriorates. Where do you go about


finding 108 billion? As your colleague indicated the European


Financial Stability Fund is there as a last resort. The idea is the


banks to access private markets first. If private markets are not


ready to provide the funds, that they could go to their own member-


state and only come to the European Financial Stability Fund as a last


resort. Is there any indication they can get it from private


sources at present? They may be able to. There is also a discussion


that they would potentially shrink some of their asset. There is


discussion as to if they are to shrink assets and therefore reduce


their capital requirements, what type of assets do they shrink. A


very strong indication by the Governments that they should not be


shrinking lending to the real economy. When so many of these


countries are already in debt, where are they going to find the


money to finance their banking systems? The really critical areas


are, again as your colleague has vindicated, Greece and Cyprus,


where they - the write-off of 60% of the Greek sovereign exposure


will reduce the capital of those banks quite severely, and pose an


immediate recapitalisation need. For other banks, French banks,


German banks, UK banks, they have a much smaller exposure to Greece in


relation to their own capital, and even at a 60% write-off of those


exposures they would still be able to maintain their overall capital.


So they can take a 60% so-called haircut, can they? It will depend,


and vary from bank-to-bank. It is certainly not the case that aside


from the Greek banks, and certain Cypriot banks, that a 60% haircut


would needly put banks into a position where they have to be


recapitalised. From what you know right now, are banks prepared to


lend to one another? Banks are carefully looking at the exposures


that they take on. They are differentiating among banks, and


some banks are putting money with the European Central Bank or with


other central banks rather than lending to other banks. Now, why


were these banking crises so unforeseen? To some extent the


first crisis was, that came about from sub-prime was unforeseen.


Let's not go right back to Lehman Brothers and that. Let's talk about


the euro. This banking crisis within the euro, why was it not


foreseen? I think the danger that it could develop into a banking


crisis was certainly foreseen. The spelling it out, and in terms of


will it actually he result in problems, depended on the political


decisions that were being taken at the time. But it was very clear.


You ran stress tests on these banks and you failed to spot this snts


were very much aware that the - Spot this? We were very much aware


that the sovereign debt issue was an area of concern. When we ran the


stress test earlier this year, there was a political decision not


to say certain countries would default and the loss that would


occur would be a certain percentage of the amount of the debt. Who made


that judgment? The judgment was the national supervisors of the euro.


Essentially politicians were deciding that there were certain


things that wouldn't be investigated, which in the end,


would be their own decision? There was a decision not to say certain


countries would default and the lost would be such and such per


cent. There was a decision by the superviser to say we needed a


disclosure that to what the exposures are. There was


unprecedented level of disclosure of the sovereign detects in the


test. It enabled the market to run its own calculation as to what the


possible...It Was very small wasn't it? One can debate it, it was the


best that could be done in the circumstances. It was a very full


disclosure of the extent of sovereign exposures. It came out


very clearly that banks, not surprisingly, had taken on the


sovereign debt of their own countries.


Thank you. Some time in the next few days,


according to the United Nations, the seven billionth person will be


born. It is just a number, but it is unarguable that the population


is growing, and the earth has never supported as many people as it has


now. We will look at the questions raised, starting with Zambia. Dave


McKean has been there to investigate the phenomenon of


private equity firms buying up swathes of farmland. At what price


can it be made profitable. It is not what we have come to


expect of Africa. The imagery of plenty, offering a tantalising


vision. The idea that Africa might not only


solve its own food problems, but help the world as well. Here in


Zambia, foreign investors are bidding to buy vast tracks of


arable land. What was once a basket case, now presented as a golden


opportunity. If you just increase the yields in Africa to 80% of what


the world averages are, Africa would become a net exporter of food.


Across Africa, land offers both a unifying symbol and the impetus for


conflict. Africa, for the Africans, was the rallying cry of liberation.


But across much of the continent, the conflict and drift of the post-


colonial age saw many condemned to poverty.


The agriculture of slash and burn still dominates. Once the burning


is over the farmer will borrow some oxen from a friend, they will


plough up the land, and with any look tell have enough maize to feed


himself and his family and some to sell to the market. What happens in


these fields isn't just about yield and about cultivation. For


centuries people in Africa have built their villages, their


community, their sense of identity around the land.


For the subsist tense farmer, this is an age of pressing questions


about the invests scrambling for Africa. There is a lot of talk


about foreigners coming, Chinese, and Britain, coming to take the


land, what do you feel about it? the Government can give the land OK.


If they feel those people, they are going to give, they are going to


develop and they are not going to disturb those people staying there.


Otherwise we are worried, because they are going to grab the whole of


the land, and even those people who are staying here with nothing.


In an age of food insecurity, as prices rise across the globe, there


is growing pressure to dramatically change the way the land of Africa


is cultivated. 50 years after the end of the colonial order, Zambia


is opening its doors to foreigners once more. A political environment


that is stable, there are excellent conditions for agriculture, so the


climate, the amount of water, the quality of the soil. If you are an


agriculture investor, Zambia is where you want to be. This is the


zambeeian bush. Here the British Private Equity


firm Chayton Capital, has leased an existing farm of 25,000 acres.


Their aim is to maximise profit, by maximising yields. We have achieved


in maize 14.2 tonnes. Stuart runs the operation in Zambia, he used to


farm in Zimbabwe before being driven off the land. He thinks it


is possible to get 30-times the yield obtained by traditional


farming. They achieved this through economies of scale, better


irrigation and a new approach to soil. It is the moisture and the


organic carbon that increases the yield potential of the crop. So the


plant can extract the nutrients. Unskilled labour is acutely


vulnerable to more efficient farming. In Africa the farm


labourer depends on his employer for accommodation, med ka care,


education for his children. This project, backed by the Government


and tax breaks promises to create jobs. In a country where 60% live


below the poverty line, it is a seductive argument. At this dam on


the farm, we met part-time workers. We have families, but if we are not


working anywhere we are suffering. You want long-term employment?


But since they have taken over the farm, there have been significant


job losses. Wherever in the world you have had farming being


industrialised, people have lost their jobs, already here you have


people losing their jobs on this farm? The last skilled jobs, yes -


the less skilled jobs, yes, as a result of mechanisation, some of


that work goes away. Through time, over building a large scale


business, is to train people up, to do highly value-added jobs, so they


can continue to build a career in agriculture or transport the skills


into other sectors as well. It is a fact that the majority of your


profit will go abroad, it won't benefit people here? Profit is the


way in which investors are compensated for putting their


capital at risk. But the value that's created by that capital


investment stays right here. When Zambia began to welcome big


commercial operators, a compelling argument would be they pass on


skills to neighbouring subsist tense farmers, everybody would be a


winner. But these small holders told us they had no help from the


big farms. And with no access to capital, these men and women


struggle to increase their yields. I'm a small farmer, I have to


source my own capital, but how to source it. You can't get a loan?


What about being able to farm in a more efficient way, do you get any


help from the commercial farmsers here, do they teach you? No, there


is nothing of that nature. In fact, there is no interaction between the


small skilled farmer and a big commercial farmer. I get the sense,


listening to your complaints, that you feel the Government is kinder


to the big farmer than they are to you? That they look after them


more? Yes. There really isn't any of the


racial edgyness, the antagonism towards whites that I found in


places like South Africa and Zimbabwe. Broadly speaking, most


people seem to welcome the idea of big commercial farming. But the


resentment at what is perceived as favouritism towards big farmers,


that is something that could prove very troubling in the long-term.


Chayton Capital leased an existing commercial farm, they displaced no-


one. But elsewhere, vast tracks of land, occupied by peasant farmers,


are being offered to bigger scale investors.


This is one of nine proposed developments, where several


thousand people live. Locals are being told the forest


must be cleared, and families are already being moved off their


farmland. TRANSLATION: Our house was on a demarcation line, a road


is supposed to pass through the area, we were forced to move.


Our house has been demolished, they didn't offer us any alternative


land, and we haven't had any compensation.


Here they already produce enough grain to feed themselves and sell a


healthy surplus. Seven years ago these people were


given a written promise by the Government that they wouldn't be


moved from the land where their ancestors are buried.


TRANSLATION: We saw people coming with machinery, they started


marking out the roads. They told us we would be moved off the land, and


that the land would be used for development.


The problem is most Zambians have no legal title. Nearly all land is


owned by the state, which can lease to whoever it wants. At the moment,


a lot of people do not know their rights on their own land, all they


know is we are the owners of this land, they do not have pieces of


paper or titles to land, therefore, they are not adequately protected.


Across Africa, Chinese, Indian, middle eastern, American, European


companies are investing in huge tracts of farmland. But we found


signs of a change in the official mood in Zambia. You can't be purr


people out and lofg them to their own - push people out and leaving


them to their own devices, that is inhuman, even if the world's hunger


were to hinge on it. In the capital there is a new Government.


Championing the poor is the vice- president. A white farmer, who


scrutinises land deals and the claim made by investors that they


will bring jobs. I would like that evaluated by more than a roaming


television crew. I would like it evaluated properly. The truth of


that claim. You sound very sceptical? I am, I have been around


a lot. I know what proposals look like, and justifications look like.


I would say 90% of what's promised 0 projected turns out not to be


true. Will you be much tougher about the way land is parceled out


in this country b the kind of deals done? Absolutely. I can answer as


an individual, yes, we're going to change the way, we will be far more


circumspect about the land issues. About land use issues.


And a lot more circumspect about what happens to the dispossessed


prop laigs. There is a genuine dilemma here, as the demand for


food grows, there is mounting pressure to make African land more


productive. But the danger is that a volatile new dynamic is created.


Of landless mass, driven by resentment of those who wish to


make a property from feeding the world. Tomorrow night in his second


report on food security, Dave McKean will be reporting from


northern - Fergal Keanewill be reporting again.


It is the coldest most merciless kind of corruption. Because, like


this time, people are dying now. That's, sadly, all we have time for


topt. It seems there were about 8 - tonight, it seems there were 82


Tory rebels, including two tellers. Hello, after today's deluge across


western areas, a quieter day thankfully on Tuesday. The


attention tourns the north-east, where further heavy and persistent


rain for eastern parts of Scotland. For the rest of us nothing too


serious. Showers around, but plenty of dry and bright weather, through


the heart of England. One or two sharpish showers will develop from


the English Channel into the some southern counties. For South-West


England, thankfully mopping-up process, apart from the odd shower


and a dry day. The winds won't be as strong either. A good thing. For


Wales as well, largely dry and bright afternoon in prospect. For


some showers but nothing of the scale we have seen over the last


few days. Things getting a chance to dry out. For eastern parts of


Scotland, in particular, it doesn't look good. Heavy and persistent


rain, warnings have been issued, go on-line for detals. Dry weather for


most of the UK, in the middle of the week, a bit of patchy fog


lingering into the afternoon. Sunshine inbetween, nothing too he


canstsive in erms it of rainfall.S this the picture on Wednesday, the


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