DURBAN – Finance Minister, Tito Mboweni’s maiden Budget Speech was always going to be tough given the extent of the economic challenges, said Samuel Seeff, chairperson of the Seeff Property Group.
This, with particular reference to corruption and mismanagement of state-owned entities (SOEs), not least of which the Eskom debacle, and the shrinking tax base.
That said, Seeff views the budget as measured and in the best interest of the country right now. While disappointed that there has been no relief for the property sector or for consumers, the budget was largely as expected by the market, he said.
We expected a bail-out package for Eskom as part of the budget, and in view of this, are encouraged that this is not in the form of higher direct personal or property taxes, although not adjusting the tax brackets will inevitably still cost consumers.
The property market has had to absorb the effects of higher taxes along with cost hikes in recent years, which has manifested in lower transaction volumes and the value of transactions in the upper price bands, said Seeff. Additionally, the market is feeling the effect of concern about land security and the general outlook for the country going forward.