A working delegation of the Vietnamese Embassy in South Africa led by Ambassador Hoang Van Loi visited KwaZulu-Natal province from April 20-24 to seek measures to strengthen economic and trade partnership between the two countries.
This was the first trip by the ambassador to South Africa’s southeastern coastal province, aiming to lay the foundation for Vietnamese firms to penetrate into one of the localities with largest economic scale and fastest growth of the country.
During his trip, the diplomat had working sessions with local policy consultative agencies and logistics businesses.
Speaking at a working session with representatives of the Trade and Investment Agency of KwaZulu-Natal (TIKZN), Loi briefed participants on the economic situation of Vietnam in 2020 as well as major socio-economic development orientations in the future.
He underlined that Vietnam and South Africa should continue to bolster the already-sound bilateral partnership, especially in trade, investment and tourism.
The embassy was ready coordinate with authorised agencies and companies at home to tap cooperation opportunities with South African partners, initially by increasing meetings between businesses from both sides, he said.
At the meeting, Director of the TIKZN Neville Matjie updated the Vietnamese side on the locality’s policies to attract foreign investors, especially the model of "One-Stop-Shop" that provides quick and effective response to administrative requests and legal support to investors.
He agreed with Loi on the need to increase visits among enterprises of both sides to turn business opportunities into reality.
At a working session with the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Durban city (Durban Chmaber), the economic hub of KwaZulu-Natal, Loi and CEO of the Durban Chamber Palesa Phili agreed to coordinate closely in organising and supporting visits by businesses of both sides to each other's country to promote trade cooperation.
Palesa Phili asked the embassy to introduce Vietnamese partners for the chamber to sign a deal on collaboration in trade promotion.
During the trip, the embassy’s working delegation also visited Durban port and the Dube Tradeport Special Economic Zone.
The Durban port is the busiest port in South Africa and one of the four most important gateways to Africa. Loi proposed to leaders of the port a plan on coordination and delegation exchange between the two sides to share experience in seaport management and logistics activity operations.
According to the Vietnamese Trade Office in South Africa, trade between the two countries reached US$1.4 billion in 2020, a considerable rise from US$1.1 billion in 2019. Vietnam mostly exported phones and components, footwear, computers, electronic products and spare parts to South Africa.