In the South African context, REITs did not exist until April 1, 2013. However, comparable investment vehicles included Property Unit Trust (PUT) or a Property Loan Stock Company (PLS company).
The new dispensation was introduced through the amendment of the tax legislation and the JSE listing requirements. Considering the introduction of special taxation rules in respect of the taxation of REITs vs PUT and PLS, the JSE was requested to facilitate the introduction of the REIT structure and regulations.
With effect from May 1, 2013, a REIT is regulated by the JSE listing requirements and rules.
From this date, PUTs were automatically considered to be REITs (Trust REIT) and listed on the JSE REIT board. PLS can adopt the regulatory framework set out by the JSE to qualify to list on the REIT board of the JSE. The new dispensation does not apply to an unlisted PLS.