As an impact study, it looked at the effect of remittances on land use and particularly whether remittances contributed to the development of the agricultural sector or if they acted as an incentive to move out of agriculture by leasing or selling the land to corporate farms in Moldova. It also explored the most migration affected regions in the context of land use and the differences between them in the way remittances were invested in the agricultural sector, such as buying land, machinery, seeds, fertilizers, etc.,; and how migration influenced efficient allocation of land via consolidation. Particularly, the study explored the possibility to legitimately pass these plots to more efficient users by either sale or lease and analyze the amount of land left uncultivated. Therefore, the study explored the cause of high rural outmigration in highly migration affected regions and the proportion of migrants who decided to invest or not to invest in agriculture and what were the determinants that affect rural migrants’ investment choices. Did their investment choices in agriculture depend on the amount of the remittances sent, type of migration, previous agricultural activities, daily need expenditures by region, or on their willingness to return or not to return home?
The study aimed to investigate whether migrant households invested in capital intensive technologies to compensate for the labour loss on-farm activities. While some studies on Albania (McCarthy et al. 2006) documented a drop in the quantity of agricultural labour effort they also proved that migration had an impact on land use, thus transfer of land to less labour-intensive production systems, ultimately resulting in greater agricultural and total household income. Since more peasant farms in Moldova decided to lease their land, it was important to see if these corporate farms were in the position to absorb this land.
Although rural outmigration had an important impact on the development of rural areas, regional empirical evidence on this issue regarding Moldova was scarce. The study aimed to explore and establish the link between the impact of migration on rural development and specifically on land use and proposed recommendations and scenarios based on other countries’ experience. Findings emerging from this study were used to draw conclusions, and draft recommendations about region specific strategies, and interventions that could assist rural migrants in their land farming decisions.