China’s investment and project financing in South Africa has reached more than $25 billion, which has created over 400,000 jobs for locals.
With the South Africa-China trade volume having last year reached $43.55 billion (about R642.6 billion) – amounting to a 11.18% year-on-year increase – China has officially been South Africa’s largest trading partner for 10 consecutive years.
Addressing a packed Chinese enterprise job fair in Midrand aimed at linking young South African job seekers with potential employers, Chinese ambassador Lin Songtian yesterday said a surge in trade between the two countries – now accounting for a quarter of the total volume of China-Africa trade – was 27 times higher since the establishment of diplomatic relations in 1998.
Songtian said China’s investment and project financing in South Africa reached more than $25 billion – covering manufacturing, finance, mining, agriculture, information and communication technologies and commerce.
This, he said, has created over 400,000 jobs for locals.
“Cooperation on human resources training enjoys broad prospects. Since 2015, China has trained more than 2,700 South Africans in various fields.
“This year, China hosted 14 bilateral training programmes for South Africa, reaching a new record in the number of programmes and trainees.
“Since November this year, more than 580 South African applicants have travelled to China to participate in various professional training programmes,” said Songtian.
The event, which also showcased the China-South Africa economic and trade achievements exhibition, was attended by 60 Chinese companies, with Songtian assuring that 130 posts for more than 238 jobs would be created for young locals, some of whom have recently returned from a year-long training in China.
“It is our sincere hope that the Chinese enterprises can become the major investor, taxpayer, employer and foreign exchange earner in South Africa – making a greater contribution to the country’s economic development and social stability,” said Songtian.
“I am glad to see that under the leadership of President [Cyril] Ramaphosa, South Africa is embracing a new era of development and renewal.”
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