India-SA business summit to increase investment relations between countries

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The India-South Africa business summit has officially been launched and is underway at the Sandton Convention Center in Johannesburg. The two-day event themed United by Legacy, Unified for Prosperity, is aimed at maximising the potential of the economic and commercial partnership between the two countries.

The summit will be marked by a Memorandum of Understanding, MOU, that will be signed between Invest South Africa and Invest India.

Addressing business delegates and other dignitaries at a gala dinner on Sunday night, Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies says the summit will help solidify trade agreements and deepen investment relations between the two countries.

“South Africa is seeking a big push on investment. We both see that there are opportunities. We can now make a big push to expand mutual beneficial relations. We are seeking in a number of sectors work that will happen and that we have identified platforms and opportunities for further engagements along the way, so that we keep up the pressure as ministers to make sure that whatever happens in terms of business people actually does translate into meaningful economic relations.”

India says it is confident that South Africa has the potential to double its trade figures with its country in the coming years. High Commissioner for India to South Africa, Ruchira Kamboj, says since the change of political leadership in South Africa, India had somewhat gained confidence in South Africa’s potential as an investment destination

India’s Minister of Commerce and Industry Suresh Prabhu says the two countries can benefit from each other economically:

“For the first time, we are discovering what we can do together, something which will benefit SA and will benefit India. There is entrepreneurship on both sides which has done so well in some sectors. SA has huge natural resources so does India, so can we use the same technology in India? India has done very well in pharmaceuticals; can we use those technologies, that knowledge for SA? Can we use those ideas for developments of small and medium-sized enterprises in SA?

Davies says they have had fruitful engagements with the CEO forum leaders from India and South Africa. The minister says Invest SA and Invest India will this week sign bilateral trade agreements and identify projects and opportunities from both countries…

“South African companies are also investors in India, so we have the Airports Company of South Africa (ACSA) which was awarded the contract to rehabilitate and it now runs and manages the airport in Mumbai. While we have seen progress we have also taken our foot off the accelerator in recent years and this is the time when India is poised to improve its economic performance and as South Africa now stands to improve its economic performance, we address the challenges that we have had in the last few years as our rates of growth are much lower than our peers and as are warranted.”