CDE the growth agenda roundtable

  • Land reform requires balancing the need for visible redress against a realistic assessment of what is possible. Agriculture, land reform and jobs focuses on the agricultural sector’s ability to generate growth, jobs and affordable food within the current political and economic context. It draws on an expert roundtable on this important topic held at CDE in June 2018.

  • The report is divided into 4 sections: the potential to expand sub-sectors where significant job creation opportunities are located; what can realistically be achieved through small-scale farming in terms of improved incomes and creating additional jobs; the role of established farmers and other private-sector institutions in supporting land reform; and new black farmers.

  • The number of South African commercial farmers dropped from 57 357 to 35 250 with nearly 60% of these farms generating turnover of less than R500 000 a year. Employment in South African agriculture has also been on a steady decline since the 1970’s.

  • Without secure and individual property rights, the private sector will withdraw from production and investment. Insecure property rights make it impossible for farmers to invest because they cannot be certain that they will reap the rewards for the risks they take and the work they do. There is also the threat that this will spill over into the rest of economy.

  • Any discussion with respect to agriculture needs to be built upon what should be South Africa’s national priorities: increased investment, faster economic and employment growth, and transformation through the emergence of large numbers of successful black farmers.

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