Like most of you, I also receive a lot of negative sentiments about South Africa in my inbox and on Whatsapp, as well as in the media.
Perhaps we shouldn’t listen to the whiners and instead, rather listen to the winners. Two of the best-known, wealthiest people of the world had this to say about seeing opportunities where others saw mayhem.
“The way to make money is to buy when the blood is running in the streets” – John D. Rockefeller
“Be fearful when others are greedy and greedy when others are fearful” – Warren Buffet
Today, the focus in South Africa is on the political play for the next General Election, and keeping the focus on the populist land expropriation without compensation debate.
The ruling political party has kept the election pot boiling on an issue that any intelligent person knows will be resolved amicably once the 2019 General Elections are done and dusted, and Cyril Ramaphosa can fill his Cabinet with people of his choosing.
No leader of a country wants to see foreign investment disappear and, with it, local investment capital flee the country too as happened in the past when the fears of the New South Africa were raging in the late 1980s and early 1990s.
Having been involved in property for more than 45 years as a property economist, developer and investor, and having seen the mayhem that resulted from such events as the Soweto Riots in 1976, The Rubicon Speech in the mid-1980s, the Codesa talks in the early 1990s and the global financial crisis of 2008, those who bought property when the blood was running in the streets were laughing all the way to the bank when the cycle turned and prices rose meaningfully after these events.
We are currently at such a crossroad and those people buying now will undoubtedly be the ones with smiles on their faces when the inevitable cycle turns upwards in a country blessed with amazing people and the opportunity to be the leading country in Africa.
In fact, by 2050 the World Health Organisation projects that one in four people in the world will be Africans, and they will need a strong leader and economic giant in Africa. South Africa has the power to be that leader and economic giant.
South Africa will attract the right people, skills and the capital it needs to lead Africa economically and politically. It’s time we all believed this and joined the winners and not the whiners and make it happen.
This article has been written by Neville Berkowitz (66) in his personal capacity at the invitation of David A Steynberg, editor of HomeTimes.co.za