Tshwane Pretoria
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The Department of Trade and Industry says Algeria is a strategic country for South Africa, with the North African country accounting for 43% of South Africa’s total trade with North Africa.

Speaking on the side-lines of the African Investment and Business Forum in Algiers, Algeria, the department’s Director of Africa Bilateral and Economic Relations, Lebogang Makoloi, said Algeria is South Africa’s largest trading partner in North Africa for the past five years from 2011 to 2015.

« South Africa has been championing a developmental integration agenda which rests on three pillars: market integration by promoting more intra-Africa trade, industrialisation by building more productive capacity, and infrastructure development. We want to see many South African companies investing in Algeria as the country is opening up for opportunities, » said Makoloi.

Algeria Ambassador to South Africa, A-EL-N Belaid, said there are opportunities for strengthening bilateral economic relations in all sectors and there is opportunity to effectively promote bilateral economic relations in Africa.

« The South African delegation is the biggest in this business forum and that is an indication of our commitment to doing business with South Africa, » said Belaid.

He highlighted that the Algerian government wanted the South African businesspeople to participate in the business forum because of the historical relationship that the two countries share.

Belaid also urged South African companies to maintain contact with the partners they will meet with during the forum and utilise the services of the embassies to do that.

« Algeria is historically committed to Africa. We are proud of belonging to this continent. You are our brothers and sisters, let us work together, » he added.

South African companies are taking part in the Forum which started on Saturday and ends today. One of the objectives of this forum is to facilitate intra-Africa trade which speaks to the African Union’s agenda of 2063.