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SA and DRC business delegation during the breakfast session in Kinshasa

Robert Mavema, Provincial Minister of Planning, Public Works and Infrastructure in Kinshasa, urged South African businesspeople to take advantage of the opportunities presented in the energy, infrastructure and agriculture sectors in the province.

Mavema said this while sharing the province’s masterplan with the South African businesspeople at a breakfast session hosted by the provincial government.

The session was part of the Investment and Trade Initiative (ITI) undertaken by the Department of Trade and Industry (the dti) to the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

“The sectors mentioned in our presentation clearly indicate that there is a need to heavily invest in infrastructure development which we know will lead to employment of our people, amongst other things. As it stands, the expertise held by South African companies stand them in good stead to take advantage of these infrastructure development programmes which can even be expanded to other provinces,” said Mavema.

Mavema added that the industrialisation and infrastructure development programmes presented to the South African delegation required the formation of joint-ventures with Congolese businesspeople. He said such partnerships would go a long way towards realising the continent’s goals of African Industrialisation.

Mavema pointed out that for the past decade the DRC has worked hard to put laws in place that will protect foreign investors and others who want to form partnerships with the local business people. He said government was more than willing to spend millions of dollars to improve the infrastructure needs for the people.

The Business Development Manager of the Gauteng-based Traction Enterprise, Gareth Smith said the breakfast session gave them an opportunity to interact and meet with the provincial ministers of energy and transport. This, he said, has paved a way for their railway projects that are planned for the Kinshasa Province.

Smith said the company is focused on power and rail infrastructure development which would be of more benefit to the DRC as they move away from diesel locomotives to electricity-powered locomotives.

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