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South African Business Delegation Off to Algeria for African Investment and Business Forum

A delegation of over 80 South African businesspeople has been invited to participate in the African Investment and Business Forum taking place in Algiers, Algeria from 3 to 5 December 2016. The forum will be attended by over 2000 delegates from different African countries.

The Minister of Trade and Industry Dr Rob Davies says the main objective of participating in the forum is to strengthen bilateral economic relations between South Africa and Algeria.

“Algeria has been South Africa’s largest export trading partner in the North Africa region, having accounted for 43% of SA’s total trade with North Africa in the period from 2011 to 2015. The value of trade between the two countries reached over R13.4 billion, from 2011 to 2015. South African exports estimated at R13 billion while imports from Algeria were R463 million,” says Davies.

He highlights that the composition of South Africa’s top five exports to Algeria included vehicles, prepared foodstuffs, vegetable products, machinery, base metals and other products. Meanwhile South Africa’s top five imports from Algeria consisted mainly of mineral fuels, chemicals, ceramic products, vehicles and other products.

Davies says despite a trade balance that is skewed in favour of South Africa, a closer analysis of bilateral trade trends illustrates that the volume and value of trade is generally declining. He adds that this indicates that South Africa is gradually losing its import market share in Algeria.

“In 2011 roughly 72% of all South Africa’s exports to North Africa were destined for the Algerian market and in 2015 the figure dropped to only 24% which is the lowest record in the past five years. Algeria is seeking more trade and foreign investment to diversify its economy especially in light of the current low oil prices, which have adversely affected Algeria’s GDP growth rate in the past years,” says Davies.

He emphasises that taking part in this forum will afford South African companies first-hand opportunity to network, identify partners for joint ventures, and create opportunities for the export of value added goods and services to Algeria and the North Africa region.

Distributed by APO on behalf of The Department of Trade and Industry, South Africa.