Current proposals on land reform are too vague for the Reserve Bank to panic about them, although a policy shift that leads to “more fundamental changes to property rights” could pose a risk to the financial system, the Bank's deputy governor Kuben Naidoo says. The banking system has a gross exposure of R125bn to the agricultural sector, with R41bn of this held by the state-owned Land Bank, he told journalists in Johannesburg on Friday. He was speaking on the same day that President Cyril Ramaphosa announced the appointment of a panel to advise the government on policy matters associated with land reform. Land reform has emerged as one of the most controversial issues of Ramaphosa’s presidency, after he announced late on July 31 that the ANC would seek to change the constitution to make explicit the conditions under which expropriation of land without compensation can take place. The announcement spooked markets, fueling a decline in the rand amid concern that property rights might ...

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