SA set on boosting investments with China

DECEMBER 3, 2014

President Jacob Zuma has arrived in China where he is leading a delegation of ministers and businesspeople on a State visit aimed at strengthening bilateral relations, the Presidency said on Tuesday.

The two-day visit, scheduled for Thursday and Friday, signals a further consolidation of South African-Sino relations.

This is President Zuma’s second State visit to China. In 2010, he took 17 Ministers and about 300 businesspeople and signed the Beijing Declaration on a comprehensive strategic partnership with China.

“One of the major objectives of the State visit is to ensure that our relations with China remain central to realising our developmental agenda through our foreign policy, as we increase our efforts to implement the National Development Plan (NDP), cooperating in the areas of agriculture, environmental affairs, trade and industry, including finance,” said President Zuma on Tuesday before his departure.

During this visit, President Zuma -- who is being accompanied by the Minister in the Presidency, Ministers of Finance, Trade and Industry, Environmental Affairs, Transport and Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries as well as the Executive Mayor of Tshwane -- will meet with his Chinese counterpart, President Xi Jinping, and exchange views on regional and global issues.

The visit will afford President Zuma and his delegation an opportunity to also engage with the Chinese government on various areas such as the adoption of  the China-South Africa 5-10 Year Framework on Cooperation that will further entrench the implementation of agreements entered into since the conclusion of the Beijing Declaration in 2010 and expand on the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership.

According to the Presidency, the visit will also offer an opportunity to obtain support for South Africa’s industrialisation agenda by securing investment in the development of science and technology, agro-processing; mining and mineral beneficiation, renewable energy, finance and tourism.

Other issues will include the reviewing of the progress and cooperation in infrastructure development. This includes reviewing progress in the locomotive procurement project, particularly cooperation in equipment manufacturing and the localisation of procurement through joint ventures with South African companies.

South Africa and China share a political and economic relationship, as China has become South Africa’s single largest trading partner in the world, while South Africa is China’s largest trading partner in Africa.

“The accession by South Africa to the membership of BRICS was an important milestone in the relations between the two countries. It was in December 2010 during China's tenure as Chair of what was then BRIC, that South Africa became a member of this important grouping, BRICS,” the Presidency said.

This is also cemented by the recent establishment of the BRICS Development Bank to be headquartered in Shanghai and the decision to locate its African Regional Centre in South Africa. This not only raises the level of cooperation between China and South Africa in addressing global challenges, but it is yet another clear indicator of South Africa’s growing significance in driving the African Agenda. -


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