Johannesburg - Trade between South Africa and France is showing signs of recovery following the global economic crisis, President Jacob Zuma said on Monday.
“There is already a lot of economic activity between the two countries,” he said at a South Africa, France business forum luncheon in Johannesburg.
“South African companies have shown an interest (in France).... I know our companies are looking forward to increasing their export into the French market.”
French president Francois Hollande is in South Africa on a state visit with business representatives, who attended the business forum.
Zuma said the countries were working from a strong base and that the visit would increase trade.
He said France's visit came at a time when South Africa was starting to implement its National Development Plan (NDP).
“The advantage of having a national vision document like the NDP is that our nation and also our development partners will know exactly what we are trying to achieve and where we want to be by the year 2030.
“It removes doubt and uncertainty,” Zuma said.
He welcomed the presence of French companies in the country.
“You are in the right country, on the right continent at the right time,” he said.
Hollande praised South Africa for its development of the NDP.
“We trust the South African economy, it is transforming itself,” he said in French.
“Any country should have a goal. France as well needs to know where it will be in 10 years' time.”
He said French and South African companies had signed a number of big contracts during the visit.
Hollande said the French business community was convinced South Africa's economy was on the right path to quick and expansive growth. - Sapa