TP Nchocho, CEO, Land and Agricultural Development Bank of South Africa: Interview
What scope is there for land restitution and redistribution to improve the use of fertile land?
NCHOCHO: Land reform needs to be addressed in a way that supports the viability of farming units. From a bank’s point of view, the scale of production matters when financing loans, as this is required to generate production levels that will make a farm financially viable. In some cases, an entire land parcel may not necessarily be productive, perhaps due to efforts to preserve a certain plant species. The economics of the farm unit are therefore integral to driving land reform. You can’t just provide 100 ha of land when half of it ends up being infertile. In development financing, the economics of production and farm viability are important guiding principles for the sizing of the land reform initiative and other considerations.
Going forward, cooperation and support between government institutions, programmes and the Land and Agricultural Development Bank of South Africa should be improved. Land Bank is certainly positioned to be the central implementing agency in the sector.
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