South African companies will partake in an Outward Trade and Investment Mission (OTIM), which gets underway in Angola today.
An initiative of the Department of Trade and Industry (dti), the OTIM will see 25 local companies partake in the trade mission through the department's Export Marketing and Investment Assistance (EMIA) Scheme.
The mission aims to promote South African value-added products and services, while creating partnerships between the business communities of the two countries.
The objective of the scheme is to develop export markets for South African products and services and to recruit new foreign direct investment into the country.
Optimism among business representatives was the order of the day ahead of the start of the OTIM.
The Business Development Manager responsible for Africa at Johannesburg-based steel manufacturing firm, Burncrete, Saalim Jallal, expressed excitement about the opportunity to travel to Angola.
Director of Aberdare Cables Johannes Mpotu said the weeklong OTIM will provide them with an opportunity to source a new market in Africa for exporting their manufactured electrical and power cables.
The mission will also help the company to forge new business relationships with potential buyers.
Basil Phupha, Managing Director of Basils Business Opportunities, said his company is keen to expand its brand footprint across the continent.
"Our strategic objective for participating in the mission is to find the market for our products that we can export to other Southern African Development Community (SADC) regions and beyond. Presently we are rolling out a plan to increase the number of African countries that our products are exported to," said Phupha.
Currently, the company's biggest clientele is in Botswana, eSwatini, Lesotho, Mozambique and Namibia.
The Deputy Minister of the dti, Fikile Majola, said the mission is an opportunity for South Africa to position itself as a preferred trade and investment partner through structured, focused and sustained commercial engagements in the targeted sectors.
The participating companies will represent the following strategic sectors which have been prioritised in the South African government's re-imaged industrial strategy: infrastructure, construction and rail, aerospace and defence, built environment professions, mining, agro-processing, agriculture and agri-business.
Taking place in the Angolan capital of Luanda, the trade mission will conclude on Friday.