EEC and relevant ministries of South Africa discussed prospects for cooperation

On January 25, the Eurasian Economic Commission's delegation held negotiations with representatives of the Ministry of Trade and Industry and the Ministry of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development of the Republic of South Africa.

Building joint work in priority industries, as well as special aspects and trends in developing the industrial complexes of the Eurasian Economic Union and South Africa were discussed by Nikolay Kushnarev, Director of the EEC Industrial Policy Department, and Malose Letsoalo, Director General for Bilateral Relations of the Ministry of Trade and Industry of South Africa. The sides agreed on mutual exchange of public analytics, including on key investment opportunities and developments in various industries, and identified priority steps for developing constructive and mutually beneficial cooperation.

Nikolay Kushnarev and Gerhard Fourie, Director General for Sustainable Renewable Energy at the Ministry of Trade and Industry of South Africa, reviewed the best international practices of technology transfer in the field of equipment, components and materials for alternative and renewable energy sources. The EEC representative gave a detailed account of the Commission's work to promote the renewable energy industry in the Union.

The Director of the EEC Industrial Policy Department and his colleagues also discussed the creation of the Eurasian Economic Union's industrial zones, which could provide access for the Member States' manufacturers not only to the South African market, but also to the entire African continent. Besides, during the negotiations, the sides considered the possibility of organizing a meeting between the Ministers of Industry of the EAEU and BRICS countries.

A wide range of issues of mutual interest in the field of agriculture, in particular the issues of crop and seed production, certification of organic products, precision farming, digitalization of agriculture, the use of innovative technologies to improve the efficiency of agriculture, and the competitiveness of crop production, were discussed during the meeting between Armen Harutyunyan and Phindiv Dinghile, Director General for International Relations and Trade at the Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development of South Africa.

The sides exchanged information and agreed to study possible mechanisms for increasing the supply of agricultural products to the South African market and forming a list of agricultural products with the highest potential for export to the EAEU countries and South Africa, and confirmed the need for an exchange of views between government agencies and business circles of the Union and South Africa on intensifying trade and economic cooperation, including by holding meetings via videoconferencing, thematic seminars and conferences.

Armen Harutyunyan informed on the EAEU activities in the agricultural sector to position the Union as a promising trade partner at the international level, the EAEU programs of sustainable agricultural development, and the Union countries' interest in the transfer of technologies and knowledge in the field of agriculture to the African region.

For reference

The work on enhancing the EAEU international cooperation in the African direction is carried out by the EEC as part of implementing Instruction No. 27 of the Eurasian Economic Commission's Council dated August 29, 2023.