The South African Ambassador to Russia, Nomasonto Sibanda-Thusi says the unlimited trade and investment opportunities that are available in Russia for the South African companies require perseverance and patience from businesspeople who want to explore them. Ambassador Sibanda-Thusi was addressing a business delegation that arrived in the Russian city of Novosibirsk today for the 10th Investment and Trade Initiative (ITI) to Russia.
The mission is organised and funded by the Department of Trade and Industry (the dti) with the aim of increasing the volume of exports of agro-processing and clothing and textile products, as well as built environment and capital equipment goods and services to the Russian market.
“South Africa and Russia have very cordial and strategic bilateral relations that companies from both countries can take advantage of. But we always emphasise to business people from South Africa that it is important to recognise the fact that you cannot come here once and expect to get business immediately. You need to build strong relations and keep coming here and knocking at the doors until they are opened,” said Ambassador Sibanda-Thusi
She added that the Russian economy has a lot to offer for the South African company, as much as the SA economy has a lot to offer for the Russian companies.
Speaking at the same briefing, the South African Foreign Economic Representative in Russia, Mr Moloko Leshaba said there was an opportunity to diversify the South African exports to Russia.
“Our export basket to Russia has been dominated by agricultural products for some time but now the Russian economy is providing opportunities in other sectors such as wine, which has seen growth of 58% in 2016 from 2015, as well as capital equipment and mining, for our companies to explore,” said Moloko.
The SA business delegation will attend a business seminar tomorrow where presentations will be made on trade and investment opportunities in both Russia and South Africa. About 100 Russian business people are expected to attend the seminar which will be followed by business-to-business meetings.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of The Department of Trade and Industry, South Africa.