Mail & Guardian Land Reform

Thu Mar 28, 08:30 - Thu Mar 28, 15:00
Glenhove Conference Centre

Land is a huge issue in South Africa (SA) where racial inequality remains entrenched more than two decades after the end of apartheid when millions of the black majority were dispossessed of their land by a white minority.

To resolve the racial inequality, it is now a reality that Section 25 of the SA Constitution will be amended to allow for expropriation of land without compensation (EWC).

President Cyril Ramaphosa, State Of the Nation Address (Sona) 2019

"The government has identified land parcels owned by the state for redistribution as part of accelerating land reform..Strategically located land will be released to address human settlements needs in urban and peri-urban areas... SA still had large areas of underutilised or unproductive land...Our policy and legislative interventions will ensure that more land is made available for agriculture, industrial development and human settlements... Agricultural exports are an important source of revenue for our economy, and developing our agricultural sector is key to enhancing our food security and for attracting investment…. Through an accelerated programme of land reform, we will work to expand our agricultural output and promote economic inclusion...Government would continue to prioritise targeted skills development and capacity building programmes for emerging black farmers...An advisory panel of experts headed by Dr Vuyo Mahlati was established to advise government on its land reform programme.."

However, fixing the land problem is not as simple as dealing with legal necessities or simply handing out land to new owners. It is much more complex. Furthermore, land redistribution is also not limited to farmland but extends to urban areas to include land for human settlement.'

Amid the optimism, there are also skepticism, anxiety and concerns on how effective the process and procedures will be, as well as if the desired outcomes will be achieved. If land reform is not carried out successfully, it can deter foreign investment into the country, reignite racial tensions and even provoke ‘land extremism’ – illegal land grab.

South Africans and international investors need clarity and updates on the land issue.In this regard, Mail & Guardian (M&G) will host a one-day conference, bringing the relevant stakeholders - government, private and public sector, businesses, professionals, consultants, legal, academia and civil society to come together to engage, collaborate and provide updates on the future of land reform. 

Contact Wan on [email protected] if you wish to be a Speaker at event.

Contact TJ on [email protected] or 11 250 7300 for more information, to book seat/s and for group discount.

  • Agricultural economy, land policy and expropriation of land without compensation (EWC)
  • Dealing with land inequality, unsatisfactory land and agrarian reform as well as uneven urban land development
  • Effective policy on rural and urban land reform in respect of restitution, redistribution and tenure reform
  • Progressive models and seamless procedures for government to implement a fair and equitable land reform process
  • Ensuring an orderly, predictable and market-based land reform
  • Lessons learned – did Zimbabwe, Kenya, Ghana, Nigeria and Venezuela achieve the intended results?
  • Achieving desired outcomes of an increased in agricultural output, promoting economic growth and protecting food security in SA
  • Role of land reform in protecting, expanding property and legal rights
  • How will the law cater for the assets on a farm and improvements on the land?
  • What about property rights of black people? Should they not be entitled to compensation?
  • Transformation through ownership – securing title deeds
  • What about the legal and financial security of property investments?
  • Will land reform threaten individual home ownership?
  • Which types of property will likely be expropriated? Productive farms, urban land owned by parastatals, unused or underutilised land, abandoned buildings, informal settlements, unused mines and mine dumps, underused smallholdings?
  • What happens to municipal debt associated with such buildings?
  • Transparency about beneficiaries - who are eligible and will benefit?
  • Ensuring beneficiaries include small-scale farmers, women and the poor
  • Role of government and institutions to ensure politics will not hijack EWC
  • Implications on the entire agricultural value chain
  • White farmer’s role and land reform challenges
  • Protecting interest of farmers and agricultural sector
  • Expropriation of land occupied by labour tenants
  • How best to use land and redistribution of skills?
  • Addressing the prevailing challenges of aspiring black commercial farmers first
  • Promoting market access for SA agriculture
  • Focusing on processing and marketing agricultural products to create jobs rather than exporting raw produce for processing abroad
  • Commitment and collaboration by farmers to be part of the solution

  • How can both public and private sectors cultivate successful partnerships to enable successful land reform process?
  • Role of private sector to ensure land reform works
  • Government’s role to provide assistance to small-scale farmers and ensuring land reform is done in a sustainable manner
  • Ensuring growth and sustainability in the agriculture sector

  • What are the likely outcomes of land reform in the next 10-15 years?
  • Can land reform process progress fast enough to achieve goal of a minimum of 30% of land redistribution to be attained by 2030 as set by the National Development Plan (NDP)?
  • What are the cost implications and what is government’s financial plan to a satisfactory land resettlement programme?
  • Will it produce equitable outcomes? Whose interests will be served? What will be the impact on food security and South Africa’s democracy?
  • Looking at the potential scenarios for 2030?
  • Ensuring beneficiaries of land reform establish commercially viable partnerships between investors and the communities
  • What are the risks to banks? Lower collateral values and higher credit risks?
  • Will EWC lead to defaults that could cost the government?
  • Protecting banks’ rights as creditor
  • Will land reform trigger default and how banks can recover loans?
  • Will there be compensation to banks?
  • How will financial institutions partner in mobilising resources to accelerate land redistribution programme?
  • What are the appropriate and new financial products to support new emerging farmers?
  • Accelerating transfer of land to black citizens
  • Promoting food security and supporting commercial agriculture
  • Agriculture and agribusiness outlook for 2019
  • What kind of impact will land reform have on the future of food security and economy?
  • Will land redistribution ultimately create jobs and alleviate poverty?
  • How will this influence the investment into SA’s already slow economic growth environment?
  • Will it impact on SA’s already weak currency?
  • How will the rating agencies see the outcome?
  • What will be the overall impact on business community?
Speakers include:
  • Nomfundo Ntloko-Gobodo, Chief Land Claims Commissioner, Department of Rural Development and Land Reform
  • Dr Vuyo Mahlati, Chairperson, Advisory Panel on Land Reform; Member, National Planning Commission & President, African Farmers' Association of South Africa (AFASA)
  • Thabi Nkosi, Executive Director: Research, Business Development & Investments, AFGRI Group Holdings
  • Wandile Sihlobo, Agricultural Economist Advisor; Member, Advisory Panel on Land Reform & Head of Agribusiness Research, Agricultural Business Chamber of South Africa (Agbiz)
  • Pierre Vercueil, Deputy President, Agri South Africa & grain and livestock farmer from the North West province 
  • Leon Louw, Executive Director, Free Market Foundation
  • Bennie van Rooy, Acting Chief Executive Officer, Land and Agricultural Development Bank of South Africa (Land Bank)
  • Sifiso Ntombela, Trade Economist, National Agricultural Marketing Council
  • Pierre Venter, General Manager, Human Settlements, Market Conduct Division, The Banking Association of South Africa
  • Prof Ferdi Meyer, Director: Bureau for Food and Agricultural Policy, Associate Professor in Agricultural Economics, University of Pretoria
  • Peter Setou, Chief Executive, Vumelana Advisory Fund
  • Bulelwa Mabasa, Director, Head of Land Reform Practice, Werksmans Attorneys & Member, Advisory Panel on Land Reform
Event is moderated by Michael Avery, Anchor, Classic Business, Classic FM

Every stakeholder in the following:

  • Agricultural and agribusiness sectors
  • Commercial farm owners
  • Mining land owners
  • State-owned land owners
  • Businesses that own land and properties
  • Government, municipalities, regulator and policy makers
  • State-owned-enterprises
  • Property group/real estate
  • Banks and financial institutions
  • Capital markets and financial services providers
  • NGOs, civil society
  • Industry/trade associations
  • Lawyers/Attorneys for property rights, land reform
  • Economists
  • Consultants
  • Risk managers
  • Academia
  • Individual land and property owners
  • Embassies and consulates


To contact [email protected] if your organisation is keen:
- to be the event Partner or Sponsor 
- to sponsor M&G special supplement (print & digital) via advertorial placement/featured article

Registration and refreshments start at 7.45 am
Conference starts from 8.30 am and ends at 4 pm with breaks for refreshments and lunch.


Mail & Guardian Land Reform
Glenhove Conference Centre
114 Grayston Dr, Sandown, Sandton, 2031, South Africa
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