UAE to Participate in Africa Trade Week in Johannesburg

A high-level trade and investment delegation organised by the Ministry of Economy under the chairmanship of Sultan bin Saeed Al Mansouri, Minister of Economy, will participate at the Africa Trade Week, set to be held in Johannesburg, South Africa, from 23th-25th June, under the theme ‘Africa - The New Home for Trade.’ The delegation includes Abdullah bin Ahmed Al Saleh, Under-Secretary of the Ministry of Economy for Foreign Trade Affairs; Mohammed Nasser Hamdan Al Zaabi, Director of the Trade Promotion Department at the Ministry of Economy; as well as senior officials and representatives from the federal and local authorities and the UAE’s private sector.

More than 10,000 participants from the ministries of Commerce, Industry and Economy, senior investors, businessmen and heads of major industrial companies from 53 countries will participate in the Africa Trade Week. The Minister of Economy will also preside over the UAE-South Africa Business Forum next Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, which will review investment opportunities in both countries in the presence of major investors.

The UAE delegation’s participation in the exhibition and the Forum aims to support the UAE’s exports and enhance its penetration into major African markets and promote national products and investments in Africa in general and South Africa in particular.

The Ministry of Economy, represented by the Department of Trade Promotion, organized a meeting in Dubai for the trade and investment delegation participating in the Africa Trade Week. Mohammed Nasser Hamdan Al Zaabi, Director of the Trade Promotion Department at the Ministry of Economy reviewed the action plan of the Emirate’s Pavilion at the Africa Trade Week. He pointed out that the pavilion will effectively highlight the UAE export companies’ products before African investors and business communities.

Furthermore, it will also provide them with a wide range of opportunities to explore African markets, as the expo is set to host more than 10,000 officials and professionals from different sectors of the industry from 53 countries to showcase their latest products, services and innovations in all sectors. These include food and beverage, retail, industry, tourism and hospitality. The delegation includes representatives of around 30 investment companies operating in various sectors such as investment, banking, energy, real estate, renewable energy and petrochemicals.

The participation of the UAE delegation in the expo aims to strengthen the ties of friendship, economic, trade and investment cooperation with one of the largest countries in the African continent, in addition to exploring the available investment and trade opportunities. Besides, it will also be a good opportunity to explore the investment opportunities that are available to the UAE investors in South Africa in many fields, as well as to promote the attractive investment environment in the UAE.

The economic and trade relations between the UAE and South Africa witnessed a large development especially during the past years. The value of non-oil trade between the two countries reached AED 14.1 billion in 2018. The value of free trade between the two countries increased to AED3.3 billion, the value of re-exports to AED2.3 billion for 2018 and the value of direct trade increased to AED 10.7 billion.

The UAE is one of the most important trading partners of South Africa, with UAE imports worth more than US$2.88 billion in 2018.

Besides, 65 percent of South Africa's exports to Arab countries come to the UAE, which ranks first in the Arab world.

In addition, the UAE is the most important Arab trading partner for South Africa in non-oil commodities, accounting for 50 per cent of total non-oil trade between Arab countries and South Africa. In terms of non-oil exports to South Africa, copper wires, sugar, gold, raw aluminium and copper products dominate, while imports are dominated by diamonds, gold, citrus, coal (carbon) and fruits. Re-exports include diamonds, cell phones, ornaments, jewellry and automobiles.