Chapter 4 Assessing and addressing betterment and compensation: international experiences
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Given the lack of experience of China in addressing betterment and compensation, it is highly desirable to gain an understanding of international experiences. The purposes of this chapter are to highlight some techniques adopted in other countries and to explore their potential applicability in China. In reading about national experiences from different countries, the author has been struck by the differences in national responses and the diversity of approaches. Britain has played the leading role in land value capture across the world, and it is well known for its volatile policies and various attempts to deal with compensation and betterment. While the whole emphasis of the Labour government was on preventing landowners benefiting from the ‘unearned increment’ in land by means of national taxes, the Conservative Party went to the other extreme and simply abolished them during the 1960s and 1970s (Hallett, 1985). In the USA, by the end of the 1960s, ‘unearned increment’seemed to arouse no concern at all, and correspondingly, no compensation was payable to owners whose property lost value as the result of a planning decision (Delafons, 1969).

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