Cape Chamber of CommerceDecember 10, 2020
Tourism MonthDecember 10, 2020
The SA Chamber USA participate in the SA Investment Conference
SA Chamber USA was invited to participate in the 3rd South African (SA) Investment Conference. Due to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, the 2020 conference was held in an immensely more challenging environment. In previous years, more than 1 500 delegates attended the SA Investment Conferences. But this year that was not possible due to social distancing. Government rather opted for online delegates to join in for the first ever virtual conference. Especially from different parts of the world.
The conference demonstrated that South Africa remains an attractive investment destination. In addition, the President shared what progress South Africa is making to improve the business climate. South Africa continued to build on the positive momentum on investment. That is, the momentum created in the years before the onset of the Covid pandemic. Foreign direct investment flows into South Africa increased from R26.8 billion in 2017 to R70.6 billion in 2018. President Ramaphosa said in his speech that the 2020 conference was about implementation. As well as turning commitments into brick and mortar projects in South African cities and towns.
Driving economic reform
The President highlighted that South Africa need more progress on driving the economic reforms to unlock investment and growth. The establishment of the Infrastructure Fund boosted investor confidence. Governments continuing implementation of the structural reforms also improved confidence. In addition, the finalization of industry masterplans in sectors such as clothing and textiles, sugar and the automotive industry supported a positive investor sentiment. The Government showcased South Africa’s strengths as a country. Especially how they can leverage these strengths to attract investment.
Most of all, one such strength is that International investors voted South Africa the second most attractive location for business. Specifically for process outsourcing for the third year in a row. With Covid-19 pandemic continually disrupting business, the private sectors perfectly placed South Africa to capitalize on the growing need of businesses for remote contact centers. South Africa positioned itself as a hub for digital services.
Following up on the commitment that Amazon Web Services made at last year’s investment conference, the company opened its first cloud data center in Africa, in Cape Town, earlier this year. South Africa is already a preferred energy investment destination. So, many of the projects implemented through the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Program have been successful. The Government acknowledged that South Africa is not the only country trying to attract investment. Firstly as part of its economic recovery efforts in the aftermath of COVID-19. So, achieve the goal of the investment conference, South Africa will have to take hands. Government has to work together with business, labor and all of society. Especially, to ensure that the seeds of local and international investment, land on fertile soil. In his remarks the President said
“Our national objective is that the investments we secure at the third South Africa Investment Conference must lead to more jobs. And improved living standards, and ultimately build the highway that leads to a better, more inclusive future for all.”President of South Africa, Cyril Ramaphosa
SA Chamber USA will be taking hands with the government of South Africa. And work together to stimulate and grow investment between SA and USA.