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SA budgets for land purchases even as expropriation looms

R3.7bn has been set aside to help black farmers who want to purchase land and acquire title deeds.

South Africa has set aside R3.7 billion ($261 million) to help black farmers who want to purchase land and acquire title deeds even as the country is changing its laws to make it easier to expropriate land without compensation.

That stands in contrast with demands from the opposition Economic Freedom Fighters, which wants all land under state control.

Read: #Budget2019 in a nutshell 

Lawmakers last year approved a proposal by the ANC to change the constitution to enable taking land without paying for it in certain circumstances as a way to address skewed ownership patterns created during white-minority apartheid rule. The country’s main commercial farmers’ lobby group says the move will deter investment and has invoked investor concerns of Zimbabwe-style land grabs.

South Africans who support the move argue it will go some way to addressing economic injustices. Many black citizens who live in squatter camps and travel long distances to get to places of work hope to receive land to build homes.

Read: Tito Mboweni’s complete budget speech 

Finance minister Tito Mboweni announced the spending measure in his budget speech on Wednesday, adding that the country will also allocate R1.8 billion to implement 262 priority land-reform projects over the three fiscal years.

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The government plans to introduce two grants in the fiscal year starting in April 2020 to upgrade informal settlements. The funds will total R14.7 billion and affect 231 000 households, it said.

© 2019 Bloomberg L.P
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Expropriations unlikely to happen simply because it will take ANC several years to agree to the nuts and bolts of how to do it.

Right now, it just makes a great campaign promise to hijack votes from the EFF.

South Africa globaly has become that old tatty magazine at the doctors room, you see it, it doesn’t interest and you twiddle your fingers on your cell for more titivating experience than the hagged print rag

Internationally the markets don’t care about South Africa and its pathetic chest thumping demands to be taken seriously

There are more exciting places for business to prosper, where land rights and business values are respected

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