The beleaguered Land Bank, which defaulted on R50bn of its debt in April last year, appears set for another state bailout even as the government battles to stave off a fiscal debt crisis amid a worsening Covid-19 pandemic that has strained its finances to breaking point.

The state-owned bank, SA’s biggest agricultural lender, reported an annual loss of more than R2.8bn for the year ended March 31 2020, according to financials posted on its website shortly after the early 12pm market close on New Year’s Eve. The results showed nonperforming loans almost doubled to R8.18bn, accounting for 18.1% of the Land Bank’s total gross loan book of R45.142bn...

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