Chinese show interest in R140m investment in Eastern Cape

Co-operative governance and traditional affairs MEC Xolile Nqatha welcomes the governor of China’s Zhejiang province, Dr Yuan Jiajun, at the airport in Port Elizabeth
Co-operative governance and traditional affairs MEC Xolile Nqatha welcomes the governor of China’s Zhejiang province, Dr Yuan Jiajun, at the airport in Port Elizabeth
Image: Fredlin Adriaan

The Chinese delegation from the Zhejiang province has shown interest in a winery investment worth R140m and an abattoir facility in the Eastern Cape.

This is according to Premier Oscar Mabuyane, who held bilateral talks with Zhejiang governor Yuan Jiajun at the Boardwalk on Monday night.

"We must move swiftly to see these projects and others get off the ground," he said.

Mabuyane said Eastern Cape businesses  had shown interest in partnering with companies from Zhejiang in the construction, agro-processing, and tourism sectors. 

"Our province is rich in safari, cultural and historic offerings, presenting major opportunities for us to share with the people of China and the people of Zhejiang Province in particular."

He appealed to Jiajun to work with the province and start the practical phase of the bilateral agreement.

"As they say, the devil is in the detail. This is the time for us to delve into the details of how we can move from theorising to practical," he said.

He said a shared commitment between both provinces should be to develop SMMEs.

"For us, SMMEs should be the driving force behind the growth of our economy. We want to partner with you on this matter so that our SMMEs can learn from the culture of entrepreneurship that China has built over centuries.

"Our government is taking deliberate attempts to invest in  SMMEs and by consciously encouraging investors to beneficiate local entrepreneurs in an attempt to create an inclusive economy.

"We are pinning our hopes on the co-operation of our provinces to make some headway on this matter."

He said the Eastern Cape had enormous economic potential and job prospects in offshore oil and gas exploration, marine transport and manufacturing, aquaculture and other maritime sectors. 

"We believe the expertise of your province in areas of ship building and bunkering will assist us as we venture into the oceans economy sector."

Meanwhile, the Eastern Cape government hosted South African and Chinese businesses at a networking session at the Coega Development Corporation on Tuesday morning.

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