JOHANNESBURG - Trade between the United Kingdom and South Africa will not be affected by Brexit.
Rob Davies, Minister of Trade and Industry and Dr LIam Fox, United Kingdom Secretary of State for International Trade had a meeting in Pretoria to discuss the continuation of trade relations between the two countries. In July this year the SACU (Southern African Customs Union) trade ministers had a meeting with the United Kingdom this year and agreed that Brexit should not interfere in trade relations.
Both ministers have committed themselves to a smooth post Brexit in terms of trade and that technical work will be boosted to make sure that the interim plans will be concluded before 2019, when the UK will leave the European Union. The ministers made a commitment to promote trade and investment that is beneficial for both countries. They still have to talk about an arrangement on technical issues to ensure that trade post Brexit is smooth.
The Minister of Trade and Industry said that the United Kingdom is an important investment partner for South Africa in regard to the overall inward FDI (foreign direct investment) flows received from the rest of the world. According to Davies the UK has invested in South Africa 333 FDI projects at an estimated R159.01 billion direct capital between 2003 and 2017. The UK is the 2nd largest EU export country and the 7th largest export partner in the world.
According to Fox the UK’s credit agency, the UKEF (United Kingdom Export Fund), has made extra funds available for UK companies exporting to South Africa and South African buyers of goods from the UK in order to boost trade between the two countries post Brexit.
Fox and Davies also toured the InvestSA One-Stop-Shop, a government initiative to improve the investment environment.
- BUSINESS REPORT ONLINE