The Hindu BusinessLine : February, 2014
Chennai: South Africa is pitching its burgeoning auto-component manufacturing industry to Indian automakers for partnerships.
Accompanied by a delegation of 27 companies, Elizabeth Thabethe, the country’s Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry, met Indian companies in a trade summit facilitated by the Southern India Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
She said the country has been integrating its automotive supply chain through partnerships with Japan and Germany over the last decade.
“There are many original equipment manufacturers in our country who source components from the local industry,” said Pumla Ncapayi, Deputy Director-General, Trade and Investment, South Africa.
South Africa boasts the presence of top companies such as BMW, Chrysler, Ford Motor Company, and General Motors, and also a significant Indian footprint with Tata Motors and Mahindra & Mahindra selling their cars in the country, she added.
Total investments by Indian companies in South Africa are close to $7 billion. Bilateral trade touched $14 billion during 2012-13.
The country is bolstering its rail and road network through a $400-billion infrastructure plan that is expected to attract foreign investors to set up factories.
The country is training and advising entrepreneurs in an emulation of the Indian business incubation model devised by National Small Industries Council – the number of such centres in South Africa is expected to touch 250 by 2015.
A preferential Free Trade Agreement between the two nations, which is under negotiations, will help cut tariffs and promote partnerships.