On Tuesday (21 August) Agri SA met with senior ANC officials to discuss a way forward on South Africa’s plans for land.
In a statement released by Agri SA, the association said it was encouraged by the ‘productive discussion’ regarding agrarian reform and agricultural property.
It added that it was pleased by a number of specific policy commitments which where made by the ANC.
According to Agri SA these include among others:
- No land grabs will be allowed;
- The protection of productive agricultural land will remain a priority;
- Optimising the use of fallow land in deep rural areas;
- Property rights will remain a key priority in agrarian development;
- Government is finalising an audit of state land for transfer to black farmers;
- Initiating production on 4,000 farms currently in government possession to unlock commercial value and create farming opportunities.
“Agriculture is asking for a collaborative framework for growth, similar to what the motor industry has achieved,” said Francois Strydom, Agbiz chairman. “All the players in agriculture are keen to take this process forward.”
“This historic meeting sets a foundation for a lasting partnership with the aim to sustainably transform and grow agriculture,” said Omri van Zyl, Agri SA executive director. “However, our focus will remain on negotiating for tangible benefits for producers.”
All agreed that those factions who are purposefully polarising society with regards to land question, should be resisted.
“The commitments from the ANC is important, but Agri SA also committed to assist with the roll out of a pragmatic plan to grow the sector and assist black farmers,” said Christo van der Rheede, Agri SA deputy executive director.