On June 10, a meeting of the Russia-South Africa Business Council was held at the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Russian Federation.
Vice President of the Chamber Maxim Fateev and Russian Ambassador to South Africa and the Kingdom of Lesotho Ilya Rogachev delivered a welcoming speech.
In his speech, Maxim Fateev noted that the Republic of South Africa is traditionally one of the five largest trading partners of Russia among African countries. At the end of 2021, the trade turnover between the two countries amounted to $1.14 billion.
Despite the current difficult international situation, Russia and South Africa have every opportunity to fulfill the potential of bilateral cooperation, primarily in such areas as energy, processing and transportation of hydrocarbons, and information technology.
“The Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Russian Federation receives a lot of requests from regional businesses interested in establishing contacts with African entrepreneurs. Moreover, the main problem is the lack of up-to-date information about markets, potential counterparties, local legislation,” Maxim Fateev emphasized.
The Chamber is ready to contribute to the organization of bilateral business meetings at the sites of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry, to facilitate business missions and exhibition events on the basis of the subsidiaries of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Russian Federation - Expocentre and WTC.
Ilya Rogachev drew attention to the global shifts in world trade caused by the tough sanctions regime against Russia. In this situation, South African entrepreneurs have a unique opportunity to significantly intensify trade and economic cooperation with the Russian Federation.
“Seize the moment - establish direct deliveries of goods from Russia, primarily food and oil products. These positions, as you know, are in great demand in the country's market,” Ilya Rogachev emphasized.
Trade Representative of the Russian Federation in South Africa Maxim Bureev spoke about the peculiarities of doing business in South Africa. According to him, business in African countries is still built primarily on personal contacts. Therefore, building a business at a distance simply will not work - you have to come, get to know each other, and negotiate long-term relationships. In addition, the South African market has changed markedly, it is necessary not only to deliver the goods, but also to establish a “end-to-end customer service”. And for this you need to build relationships with local entrepreneurs.
The meeting of the Russia-South Africa Business Council was attended by South African Ambassador to Russia Mzuvukile Maketuka, head of the royal house of Kei Koran Khobaha Melvin Arendse, as well as representatives of Russian and South African companies.
Summing up the results of the meeting, Pavel Yakovlev, Chairman of the Russia-South Africa Business Council, Director General of AZ Ural, noted that several appeals to federal authorities would be prepared on issues that hinder cooperation between the two countries.
Press Service of the Chamber