French President Francois Hollande arrived at Waterkloof Air Force Base in Pretoria on Monday morning for his first state visit to South Africa.
Hollande was greeted by International Relations Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane before setting off for the Union Buildings, where he will be received by President Jacob Zuma.
The visit is expected to "take relations between the two countries to a higher level," the Presidency said on Sunday.
"South Africa will engage France informed by the country's new socio-economic blueprint, the National Development Plan (NDP), which spells out what society in South Africa should be by the year 2030, prioritising inclusive economic growth, job creation and prosperity," the Presidency said in a statement on the weekend.
Hollande's visit "will particularly be used to deepen cooperation in areas such as manufacturing, skills development, energy, maritime, agriculture, science and technology, arts and culture and development cooperation."
The two leaders are also expected to discuss cooperation on peace and security on the continent, and the promotion of Africa's regional infrastructure development programme and economic integration initiatives.
Zuma is scheduled to attend an African peace and security summit due to be hosted by Hollande in France in December.
Hollande arrived in South Africa accompanied by a high-powered business delegation who will be meeting with their local counterparts in Johannesburg on Monday to explore French involvement in Africa's industrialisation drive.