DURBAN – The chairperson of Trade and Investment KwaZulu-Natal Ina Cronje, the newly appointed CEO of Trade and Investment KwaZulu-Natal Neville Matjie and the MEC for Human Settlements and Public Work Ravi Pillay gathered at the Durban ICC for the KwaZulu-Natal Export Week.
Present at KZN Export Week was representatives four African countries, South African export partners India and China as well as Finland.
Pillay who was there on behalf of MEC for Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs Sihle Zikalala spoke about the KwaZulu-Natal export sector and highlighted both achievements and areas for improvement.
Pillay said “As a government, we see this week as an opportunity to cast a spotlight on business leaders involved with the development of our export markets which earn our country much-valued foreign currency”
Highlighted during the session was the slowing down of international trade as well as trade wars. South Africa is volatile to the turbulence in global trade because the country’s export base is small and not diversified.
According to the MEC, our strategic location provides advantages in economies of scale and creates an enabling environment that allows companies to get their products to world markets with relative ease and cost-effectively.
The TIKZN Chairperson Ina Cronje that the KZN Export Week was an opportunity for emerging exporters to gain information on the export industry and it provides the golden opportunity for exporters to network.
According to Cronje, exporters need to be competitive and produce a product that is sustainable.
Here are some facts about the KwaZulu-Natal export industry:
- Durban and Richard’s Bay offer unique benefits to manufacturers and exporters located in KwaZulu-Natal.
- The Durban Port is one of South Africa’s busiest container handling port.
- Richards Bay is South Africa’s biggest break bulk cargo port.
- KwaZulu-Natal boasts a footprint of a world-class, competitive logistics sector.
- The Port of Richards Bay for August exceeded seven million tons.
- A bulk of it - 6.6-million tons - was shipped from KwaZulu-Natal shores.
- The number of vessels entering and leaving South Africa has shown a steady decline since early 2015.
- Regionally, the Port of Durban has shown a decrease in total vessels entering and leaving the port, in line with national trends.
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