News

24.10.2018
Discussions on prospects for cooperation with countries of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) were held
On October 23, the city of Moscow hosted the Russia-SADC Investment Forum (Southern African Development Community). 

The Forum’s participants consisted of the diplomatic corps of South Africa and Zambia, representatives of the SADC secretariat, members of the business circles of the Democratic Republic of Congo, South Africa, Tanzania and other countries. In total, more than 100 participants from Africa attended the forum. The Heads of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Economic Development of Russia took part in the event.

About 80 participants, including such companies as AK “Alrosa” and “Rosatom-International Network”, as well as the Heads of the Moscow, Moscow Regional and Ural’s Chambers of Commerce and Industry, represented the Russian business interests. 

The SADC’s Executive Secretary, Dr. Stergomena Lawrence Tacks, informed the participants about the current achievements in implementing strategic development programs in the region, presented new projects, and set final goals in the development of local and regional infrastructure, energy and diverse branches of selected industries. 
The Vice President of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Russian Federation, Mr. Vladimir Padalko, welcomed the participants to the event. He noted that in order to strengthen business relations between Russia and the SADC countries, it is necessary to engage in active development of interregional cooperation, participation of African entrepreneurs in Russian exhibitions, bilateral informational exchange, and organization of business missions for Russian entrepreneurs to sub-Saharan Africa, including the SADC countries.  

The Forum’s participants noted that there is a growing interest in African countries within the Russian business community. At the same time, despite consistently positive trends in the growth of commodity turnover, there is a significant, untapped potential in the trade and economic relations between Russia and the SADC. Promising areas for cooperation are industrial production, the mining sector, health care, energy, transportation and logistics, and finance. 

The advisor to the President of the Moscow Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Mr. Artem Dalevich, took part in the work of the “Regional production Industrial-marketing communications, the mining sector”. He presented the software of the Chamber – the "Business Market". “We want international and interregional business interaction with the countries of Southern Africa to become even more vigorous and steadily active, despite the distance between our business centers. 
For this purpose, we offer a ready-made solution: our design of a digital platform, the “Business-Market”, which has already received the approval and support of the Chambers of Commerce and Industry of eight business centers in the Russian Federation and the CIS. Moreover, we will be happy to provide the access to this platform gratis for organizations that unite businesses in southern Africa. We are confident that business representatives from Southern African Development Community will find useful partners for themselves on this site - buyers, contractors, investors”.
 
Already in its existing phase, the “Business Market” allows interregional industrial cooperation through the monetization of idle companies’ resources. That is, some companies, experiencing a temporary shortage in their own resources (specialists, equipment, premises), can acquire or lease these assets from companies that are currently not using them.

  On October 24, the SADC’s Executive Secretary, Dr. Stergomena Lawrence Taks, met with the Vice-President of the MCCI, Mr. Suren Vardanyan, and representatives of the business circles of Moscow. 

Mr. Vardanyan presented the economic potential of Moscow. “Today, Moscow is the leader in terms of attracted investments due to the systematic work on the development of high-tech industries and the creation of an appropriate infrastructure. The government of Moscow has developed a concept for polycentric development of the city, which includes improving the transportation infrastructure, advancing the living conditions of Muscovites through a program of renovation, digitalization of basic city services, improving comfort, while enhancing peripheral districts of the capital,” said Mr. Vardanyan. 

Olga Shtemberg, the Head of the MCCI’s Committee on Supporting Entrepreneurship in the Conditions  of New Quality of Life and Sustainable Development, noted that the 17 goals of the UN on sustainable development, particularly health and well-being, quality education, rational consumption, clean water, affordable and clean energy, the elimination of poverty, et al. – are very relevant for Russia, and that the Committee is engaged in helping business and society to achieve these goals. Ms. Nadezhda Kustova, the Deputy Head of the Russian Franchise Association, noted that Russian brands are doing well in international markets, of which the African market is also of interest. The Head of the public organization "Women of our city", Ms. Larisa Gorchakova, spoke about her activities, aimed at supporting women in business and society. 

The participants discussed opportunities for cooperation in various sectors of economy, including the establishment of imports of fruit and the South African wine. The idea was proposed for holding a Forum with the participation of business in 2019, supported by Dr. Taks. She explicitly stressed that the program of the Forum should focus, as much as possible, on the practical issues of doing trade and investing in Russia. In addition, the meeting participants spoke in favor of renewing the Days of African Culture in Moscow. 

Mr. Vardanyan noted that in establishing constructive economic and scientific-technical cooperation it is especially important to take into account cultural particularities.

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