Advice and Opinion

Comment: SONA 2017 reaction: Lew Geffen Sotheby’s Int.

Lew Geffen, Chairman of real estate group Lew Geffen Sotheby’s International Realty, says from an international business confidence perspective the real state of the South African nation was demonstrated by the chaotic and violent scenes in and around Parliament before President Zuma delivered his address.

“Those images will make their way around the world. They will no doubt further dent investor confidence and place our rating status in an even more perilous position – neither of which augers well for Zuma’s optimistic economic growth forecast this year of more than 1.5% after a near flatline 0.4% last year, according to Treasury estimates”.

“And while the president’s call for greater economic transformation and land investment is commendable, unless it is predicated upon sound policy that supports economic growth and job creation it’s simply populist pie in the sky”.

“A weak economy hurts every citizen and every business sector, including the property industry. On the back of this, national house price inflation has slowed significantly over the past year and the picture is unlikely to change in 2017.”