Cape Trade with Key African Markets Boosted by R268 million
Event Africa Contributor 31/08/2018 Industry News
Western Cape trade with key markets in the rest of Africa has been boosted by R268 million, following two successful trade missions by Wesgro’s international trade unit.
Wesgro receives its trade promotion mandate from the City of Cape Town and the Western Cape Government.
The unit’s mission to Senegal, which took place at the end of July, recently resulted in 7 export declarations signed with an estimated economic impact of R172m over the next 5 years – the result of which has the potential to create 45 new jobs in the Western Cape.
Similarly, the unit’s mission to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, in late June, has seen the signing of 5 export declarations with an economic impact estimated at around over R96m in the next 5 years, with the potential to create 17 jobs.
Wesgro CEO, Tim Harris welcomed the signing of these trade declarations. “The rest of Africa is now the Cape’s single biggest trading partner, with trade valued at more than R45 billion. This is precisely why our trade team treats the continent as a key priority, and we will continue to do so in the future. We are excited to be part of Africa’s exciting growth, as we establish ourselves as an international gateway into the continent.”
The mission to Senegal in late July featured Halal companies operating in the agribusiness sector. During the visit, Senegal’s Head of International Relations for the Senegal Chamber of Commerce, Mr Papa Cisse, expressed the chamber’s willingness to bring a delegation to Cape Town to take part in the upcoming Africa Halal Week 2018, from 15-18 October 2018.
Forming part of Wesgro’s International Trade and Outward Investment Programme for the rest of Africa, the delegation to Addis Ababa comprised of 11 companies from a number of sectors including telecom, agribusiness, manufacturing and services.
Wesgro’s partnerships with key institutions such as the Addis Ababa Chamber of Commerce and the Ethiopian Investment Commission are pivotal for such missions as they are able to help alleviate some of the major challenges facing trade and investment with the country.
Minister of Economic Opportunities, Alan Winde, commented: “The results of these two missions show the untapped potential of the African market. Ethiopia was the world’s fastest growing economy in 2017 according to the World Bank, and Senegal is one of the fastest growing economies in Africa. Both of these countries are registering excellent growth and have strong agricultural sectors, which ties in with our Project Khulisa goals to develop agri-processing in the Western Cape, and grow jobs in this sector. We look forward to developing and expanding our trade partnerships with these two countries going forward.”
Commenting on the outstanding results from the trip into Africa, Wesgro’s Head of International Trade and Development, Denan Kuni, said: “It is the ultimate reward to see such outstanding results off the back of the team’s tireless work. The Trade unit has set the bar high in Quarter 1 of this financial year and we will continue to strive to strengthen our trade and investment relationships with the rest of Africa while further boosting the economy and creating jobs.”
Michael Tiam-Gamwo, Wesgro’s Head of International Trade in Africa, added: “It is promising to have such a positive response and commitment from these two key markets, reflected in the signing of export declarations. We will remain committed to forging new and lasting relationships between our Province and our neighbouring African counterparts, as well as assisting local businesses expand their local footprint.”