Pretoria: The Minister of Trade and Industry Rob Davies will today officially open the South African Expos 2012 in Beijing, China where 68 local companies from different sectors are participating with a view to expanding their exports to that country.
The expos are an initiative that seek to expand the basket of export products into China, and change the current structure of trade to comprise more value-added products over the long term. The minister will open the expos together with his Chinese counterpart, Cheng Deming.
“These particular expos are special in that we chose a number of companies that have the ten value-added products identified in the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership Agreement (CSPA) signed by both countries in August 2010, prioritising the improvement of the structure of trade between the two countries,” said Davies
He said companies should take this opportunity provided by the government to represent South Africa in a good light and act as ambassadors for their products.
“There is a need to establish capacity for South African companies to supply a larger market in China especially in the agro-processing and space aviation sectors that have prospects in Asia,” added Davies
China and South Africa are both part of the BRICS bloc and have a number of co-operation agreements in place. The two countries have secured a number of important networks with both the Chinese government and business community.
Johannesburg Central Business District-based company; Ithemba Diamond General Manager, Mosibudi-Jo Mathole, said China was one of the few countries where there was abundant market for the diamond industry.
“China has a 40 percent consumer ratio of all diamonds in the world in that they have more retail branches of jewellery stores and are one of the leading countries involved in beneficiation of diamonds stones. So it is very clear that this is the market where we can grow Shrenuj as a brand and Ithemba Diamond as a diamond manufacturer,” said Mathole
She also said that she was positive about the expos and was looking forward to the one-on-one business meetings with potential partners or distributors.
The Director of Right Side Marketing Company, who has been producing juice for the past ten years, Tony Singh from Germiston, said he was looking forward to the business to business meetings.
“I have been to several missions organised by the Department of Trade and Industry and China has never been one of them. I’m therefore looking forward to meeting potential inventors and credible distributors who are already in the market and have set of networks with big supermarkets, hotels and wholesalers,” said Singh.
Davies will also witness the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between the Department of Trade and Industry and the International Brand Management Centre pertaining to the promotion of South African products in China on Monday.
It is envisaged that this particular initiative will substantially enhance the trade relationship between China and South Africa. The Expo will be held in Shanghai from Thursday until Friday.