'India poisedto play key role in South Africa'

The South African Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry Elizabeth Thabethe, on Monday said that India’s emerging economy is expected to play an important and growing role in South Africa and the global economy in coming years.

 “World trade patterns are changing, and trade with India is of growing importance to South Africa. Since establishing bilateral relations in 1993, trade between India and South Africa has grown steadily and consistently. The potential of India’s economy and the country’s growth trajectory is forecast to recover to previous levels in the coming years.

This is good news for South Africa,” Thabethe said.

 Thabethe is in India on the 5-day Investment and Trade Initiative since 23 February 2014. She is leading a delegation of 27 businesspeople representing a variety of sectors including agro-processing, capital equipment, automotive, clothing and textiles, mining and energy. They are partnering with the Southern India Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SICCI) in Chennai.

 She said South Africa’s trade with India has doubled over the last five years, with minerals base metals, chemical products and machinery making up the bulk of exports.
 “India has been one of our top 10 trading partners for the past few years and is now our fifth-largest export destination and sixth-largest source of imports, according to the latest data,” she added.

 More and more Indian companies are setting up business in South Africa following Mahindra, Ashok Leyland, Bank of Baroda, Godrej, Marico and Infosys.

These companies are testimonies to the lucrative business environment South Africa offers them. “We encourage more companies to come forward and explore the opportunity provided by a fellow BRICS nation.”  she said.

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