The Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (dtic) is today hosting the South Africa – Bulgaria Business Forum as part of activities during the official Bulgarian working visit to SA.
The session brings together business representatives from both countries to explore areas of cooperation.
dtic Minister Ebrahim Patel said bilateral trade between Bulgaria and South Africa has grown significantly overtime, specifically last year, where a sharp rise was recorded.
“Imports from Bulgaria to South Africa amounted to R4 billion and exports from South Africa sat at R2 billion,” Patel said.
Patel said due to South Africa’s commitment to addressing issues of climate change, the green energy trajectory is unlocking new opportunities. In this regard, government would like to see more joint ventures and greater collaboration with Bulgarian business counterparts.
“As the South African government, we would like to forge partnership with Bulgaria,” he said.
Patel said trade numbers are still modest, leaving enormous opportunity to expand.
“This requires that we find ways of exporting more products to the growing market in Bulgaria.”
The Bulgarian Deputy Prime Minister, Hristo Alexiev, said Bulgaria’s automotive sector is very strong and currently contributing 11% to the GDP.
Alexiev said Bulgaria would like to explore joint ventures with South Africa.
“Bulgaria considers South Africa as a gateway to the rest of the African continental market due to its strategic position, therefore, cooperation with South Africa is critical for us in Bulgaria,” he said.
The Business Forum takes place on the sidelines of the official two-day visit to South Africa by the President of Bulgaria, Rumen Radev.
The Bulgarian delegation accompanying President Radev includes that country’s businesspeople, who are engaging their South African counterparts at the business forum.
Source: South African Government News Agency