President Pozza meets Shirish M. Soni, Ambassador of South Africa

Pozza: «The awaited reinforcement of South Africa economy confirms the strategic role and the big business opportunity that such market represents for Veneto enterprises»

Economy - published on 30 August 2018

Source: Unioncamere del Veneto

Venice, 29thAugust 2018 |The President of Unioncamere del Veneto Mario Pozza, together with the vice Secretary-General Valentina
have met on Wednesday 29th August at Unioncamere del Veneto premises, Shirish M. Soni, Ambassador of South Africa, in order to establish a fruitful dialogue
targeted to increase the business exchange between the two markets.

In 2017 the Italian export towards sub-Saharan Africa increased by +5,5%, reaching 5,2 Billion Euros. The increase has showed a turnaround after the decrease in 2015-2016, and it
anticipates a relaunching of the Italian sales. South Africa is giving force to the new business opportunity, the first market for Italy in the sub-continent, where the good
performance in 2017 (+15,8%) scored more than 1,8 Billion Euros of sold goods and it has allowed a strong recovery of what lost in 2016 (-16,2%). The surplus of
the trade balance has reached 306 Million Euros. According to SACE, the export rate will increase by +6,7% in 2018 and by +4,5%, in annual average, in the three-year period 2019-2021.

Regarding Veneto, in 2017 the Region has exported goods in South Africa of 276 Million Euros, about the 15% of the Italian export towards the Country. For the
second year running sales have showed a decrease (-4,6%) driven by a drop of sales in machinery for special use, engines, electrical generators and transformers. In the first quarter 2018, however,
there has been a new increase in sales (+9,6%) that have reached more than 71 Million Euros. More than 22% of export in South Africa is represented by jewelry and related articles,
sector that in 2017 has accounted for 62 Million Euros, +14,5% over 2016. Export of medical-dental instruments and equipment, machinery, industrial
equipment and furniture
follow. The South Africa government aims at promoting investments that generate technology transfer and supporting an export-oriented industry. Referring to
imports in 2017, Veneto Region has purchased from South Africa goods amounting almost 87 Million Euros, decreasing in comparison to the previous year, as result of
the import collapse of anthracite, basic precious metals and permanent crops products. Imports of tanned and dressed leather, principal source of import from South Africa (about 16
Million Euros, +22,2% in comparison to 2016), steel industry, stone, sand and clay products have instead increased. The trade balance in 2017 stabilised around 138 Million Euros.
The first quarter 2018 has showed a recovery of the Venetian imports from South Africa, with an increase by +14,6% (25 Million Euros).

The Ambassador Shirish M. Soni is determined to develop the business relations between Veneto and South Africa.

«In the mechanical-industrial sector, where Veneto Region is leader, there are great opportunities for the regional enterprises that count products with high technological content, exactly what
the South Africa industry strongly needs – explains Mario Pozza, President of Unioncamere del Veneto -. We have to work towards the strong complementarity of these two markets,
taking into consideration also the growth forecast for South Africa in the next years (+1,4% in 2018 and +1,8% in 2019 according to the World Bank estimates). In addition, in recent months, South
Africa has experienced a deep political and institutional change, and the new government gives priority to the fight against corruption and the relaunch of the economy by means of liberal and
market-friendly reforms. The Chambers of Commerce – continues the President and Councillor of Assocamerestero – have developed a strong functional specialization in the delivery of services to
local enterprises, in the field of supporting in foreign markets, partnership meetings, assisting in contracts, taxation, duty, relief instruments. In Veneto Region, the promotion of “Made
in Italy” is starting again on September thanks to Nuovo Centro Estero
, the dedicated Chamber department that will be in charge of sustaining the regional enterprise system in the
internationalization process, in strict cooperation with Veneto Region, trade associations and all stakeholders, in order to identify the needs expressed by the local companies».

The meeting of today is part of the international appointments that the President of Unioncamere Veneto is carrying out from last April. He came across the Ambassador of Senegal Seynabou Badiane,
the Autralian Ambassador Greg French, the President of the Chinese Group Maylink Holding Group Limited Li Yongping, the General-Consul of the Islamic Republic of Iran Amir Masoud Miri, the vice
Minister for Economy of the Belarus Republic Dmitry Matusevich.

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