SA businesses explore opportunities in Côte d’Ivoire

Gauteng-based company, Etion Limited aims to grow their client network and sell high-tech digital solutions during the Outward Trade and Investment Mission (OTIM) to Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, scheduled to take place from today.

The mission, which is organised by the Department of Trade and Industry (the dti), aims to profile and market South African expertise and capabilities to Cote d’Ivoire in an effort to advance the levels of intra-Africa trade and investment.

Group Chief Executive Officer for Etion, Teddy Daka, said they want to grow significantly beyond South African borders and identify potential partners that can represent them in the Western African market.

“As we have never been in Cote d’lvoire before, this mission will also be a good opportunity to get a view of the economic landscape and to meet with different entities that may be interested in our products and services. Our main goal is to make a meaningful connection with one or more government agencies that we could get interested in our Cyber Security portfolio,” said Daka.

They will also be on the lookout for candidate customers in the electronic engineering space that may be looking to establish local capabilities within Cote d’lvoire, and “with whom we could engage as a technology partner to assist in build local capacity”.

“Our participation in this mission represents a vote of confidence in our ability as Etion to showcase how South Africa is at the forefront of digital transformation on the African continent. We are in the midst of a technological revolution that will fundamentally alter the way people live, work, and relate to one another.

“This OTIM gives us the opportunity to extend our reach and expand our business,” he said.

Etion employs 313 people across the group and provide diversified digital technology solutions in South Africa, Europe, Middle East and Africa.

The participating companies are funded by the dti through its Export Marketing and Investment Assistance Scheme (EMIA). The objective of the scheme is to support both market access for South African products and services and to recruit new foreign direct investment into the country.

The programme for the OTIM entails a trade and investment seminar, targeted business-to-business meetings, site visits and a roundtable discussion at the African Development Bank (AfDB) headquarters.

Meanwhile, Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry Nomalungelo Gina will lead another group of businesspeople on an Outward Trade and Investment Mission to Pemba and Maputo, in Mozambique from 24-29 November 2019.

The objective of the mission is to increase bilateral trade and investment between South Africa and Mozambique by exposing South African companies to opportunities available in Mozambique.

Mozambique is South Africa’s third largest trading partner on the continent. Total trade between the two countries has remained strong over the past five years, growing from R43.9 billion in 2013 to R52.4 billion in 2018.

According to the Deputy Minister, the mission is an ideal platform for South African companies that would like to export value-added products and services, as well as those that are seeking investment opportunities in Mozambique.

“The specific focus of the mission will be on designated industrial and infrastructure projects as envisaged in the Memorandum of Understanding on Economic Cooperation between the two countries. These include the liquefied natural gas projects in the Northern Cabo Delgado Province; electricity generation, transmission and distribution systems; water supply systems; transport infrastructure such as ports, rail and roads; and the industrial development zones,” said Gina.

She said the projected economic boom associated with the development of the gas sector in Mozambique is expected to have multiple positive spin-offs for the rest of the economy.

“Natural gas discoveries are attracting investments and provide numerous opportunities for South African firms looking to expand into Mozambique,” said Gina.