UBS’s belief that expropriation without compensation will be handled “sufficiently well” (Land seizures will be handled well, says UBS, January 14) is a poor substitute for assurance of prudent policy and competent implementation. As a policy, expropriation without compensation is inimical to property rights and thus to investment. The expropriation without compensation “debate” has already hurt the economy — President Cyril Ramaphosa’s investment envoys have indicated as much. In a best-case scenario, expropriation without compensation will impose a burden on the country’s prospects for some time until investors, domestic and foreign, determine that it is being undertaken “sufficiently well”. Whether that will, in fact, be the case is an open question. Expropriation without compensation is propelled by profoundly political and ideological drivers; the lure of greater state discretion to intervene in ever more lucrative assets may prove tempting. We have long seen this in often coun...

BL Premium

This article is reserved for our subscribers.

A subscription helps you enjoy the best of our business content every day along with benefits such as exclusive Financial Times articles, ProfileData financial data, and digital access to the Sunday Times and Times Select.

Already subscribed? Simply sign in below.

Questions or problems? Email or call 0860 52 52 00. Got a subscription voucher? Redeem it now