Mpumalanga businesses are being encouraged to take advantage of tourism and agro-processing opportunities in Cuba. Economic Development and Tourism MEC Eric Kholwane identified these areas of potential during a South Africa-Cuba Business Trade and Investment Seminar in Havana this week.
“After attending the seminar, I have no doubt that there are numerous opportunities that our companies back home can take advantage of. The opportunities in tourism and agro-processing are almost tailor-made for businesses in our province,” he said.
He said his department would make an effort to help small and medium enterprises, in particular, to explore these opportunities.
The purpose of the seminar was to identify investment opportunities for both South African and Cuban business people.
Kholwane said that when the Cuban ambassador to South Africa, Carlos Fernandez de Cossio Dominguez, visited Mbombela last week, discussions focused on possible exchange programmes relating to health and housing matters.
The seminar in Cuba was arranged by the Department of Trade and Industry.
At the seminar, Deputy Trade and Industry Minister Mzwandile Masina reiterated South Africa’s commitment to increasing bilateral trade with Cuba, which is low at the moment.
The Cubans presented a portfolio of investment opportunities worth more than R90bn in 12 strategic sectors of the Cuban economy.
These included agribusiness, biotech and pharmaceutical, tourism, renewable energy, construction, oil exploration, mining, and industrial production.
The Department of Trade and Industry has identified 140 products for trade with Cuba in order to increase volumes of SA exports to Cuba.