How to broaden farm ownership for successful transformation in South African

Agricultural Business Chamber of South Africa (Agbiz) Chief Economist, Wandile Sihlobo, delivered a keynote address at Large Herds S.A. Conference in KwaZulu-Natal on 07 June 2022. The address focused on the topic of How to broaden farm ownership for successful transformation in South African agriculture. The presentation is based on a paper co-authored with Professor Johann Kirsten of Stellenbosch University. For background, one of the dominant questions in South Africa's agricultural policy since the dawn of democracy is the need to accelerate land reform to ensure the inclusion of black farmers in the sector. The failures in this attempt prompted some political parties to call for a need to expropriate land without compensation from December 2017 through an amendment in section 25 of the Republic of South Africa constitution. This is a motion that was tabled in the National Assembly and failed. On the margins, some began to ask, "Is farm ownership a requirement for success in the South African context?". Of course, this is a broad question and answers to it would depend on each individual's financial status. But using the principle that farming is a long them endeavour with intensive capital investment, farm ownership is crucial. For this fundamental reason, South Africa still discusses the subject of land ownership, which we aim to explore in this paper/presentation, not the historical perspective but the options to accelerate land reform from now on.

Published: 07 June 2022