Calgary, Canada, August 29, 2013 --(PR.com
)-- Political pressures to increase restrictions on foreign ownership of farmland have been rising in developed markets such as Australia and New Zealand, in addition to large emerging markets for foreign agriculture investment such as Brazil, Argentina. According to a poll by Vote Compass, “more than 75 per cent of Australians believe the Government should tighten the rules on foreign ownership of Australian farmland.” Support for the proposition appears to be evenly spread between urban and rural voters and across the political continuum - "Vote Compass respondents were asked for their view on this statement: "The Government should further restrict foreign ownership of Australian agricultural land."
Stephen Johnston, founder of Agcapita Partners LP, a Canadian farmland investment fund, commented that "Agcapita believes that political risk will be a key determinant of the returns to agriculture investments hence our focus on a stable market like Canada. Foreign governments and institutional investors have only recently been moving into the space and in a very limited way and yet they have already generated considerable controversy and political backlash where they have deployed capital into the emerging markets. We believe that this will only become worse over time as agricultural commodity prices increase and the issues of domestic food security and foreign control move to the top of the political agenda in the emerging markets."
Agcapita’s series of farmland funds continue to show great appeal to conservative investors concerned with inflation and the volatility of their existing public equity investments. Farmland has similar inflation hedging qualities to gold but with an ongoing cash yield that gold lacks. Farmland returns exhibit low volatility and this combined with the high absolute returns from farmland equate to a favorable Sharpe ratio. Agcapita’s funds directly hold diversified portfolios of farmland in western Canada, and in particular in the highly price competitive province of Saskatchewan. Investors are provided with the comfort of a direct investment in farmland combined with a model of front-end loaded cash rents. Agcapita believes farmland is a safe investment, that supply is shrinking and that unprecedented demand for "food, feed and fuel" will continue to move crop prices higher over the long-term. Agcapita is one of Canada's most experienced farmland fund managers, launching its first fund in Q1 2008.
This news release may contain certain information that is forward looking and, by its nature, such forward-looking information is subject to important risks and uncertainties. The words "anticipate," "expect," "may," "should" "estimate," "project," "outlook," "forecast" or other similar words are used to identify such forward looking information. Those forward-looking statements herein made by Agcapita, if any, reflect Agcapita's beliefs and assumptions based on information available at the time the statements were made (including, without limitation, that (i) the demand for agricultural commodities will continue to grow at a pace that is unlikely to be matched by growth in agricultural productivity, and (ii) investment demand for tangible assets such as agricultural commodities and farmland will continue to increase for the foreseeable future). Actual results or events may differ from those anticipated or predicted in these forward-looking statements, and the differences may be material. Factors which could cause actual results or events to differ materially from current expectations include, among other things: risks associated with the ownership and operation of farmland, including fluctuations in interest rates, rental rates and vacancy rates; general economic conditions; local real estate markets; supply and demand for farmland; competition for available farmland; weather; crop diseases; the price of grain and other agricultural commodities; changes in legislation and the regulatory environment; and international trade and global political conditions. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on any forward-looking information contained in this news release (if any), which is given as of the date it is expressed herein. Agcapita's undertakes no obligation to update publicly or revise any forward-looking information, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.