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Mandela Day

African Union (AU)

South African Development Community (SADC)
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On 10th July 2013, Ambassador Magau and Ms Skolo, Counsellor Political paid a visit to Ninh Binh Province.

Ambassador Magau paid courtesy calls on the Chairman and Vice Chairman of Ninh Binh People’s Committee and the Vietnam Communist Party Chief of Ninh Binh Province which are both responsible for the administration of the Province at different levels.

In addition to the courtesy calls, the purpose was also to discuss possible areas of cooperation between Vietnam and South Africa in general and Ninh Binh and a South African Province in particular.

In the meeting with Mr Bui Van Thang, Chairman of Ninh Binh People’s Committee, he highlighted socio-economic achievements of Ninh Binh and also expressed the hope that the visit is the beginning of cooperation in the fields of trade and tourism between Ninh Binh and South Africa.

Mr Thang said that Ninh Binh has been allocated land to develop Game Parks and was keen to learn from South African experience and expertise in the establishment and management of Game Parks.

During the courtesy call to the General Secretary of Ninh Binh’s Communist Party, and Member of the Central Politburo, Mr Bui Van Nam, he invited the South African Ambassador and South African enterprises to come and explore the potential for investment opportunities in Ninh Binh.

In the meetings with the two senior leaders of Ninh Binh Province both leaders requested South Africa to:

  • support Ninh Binh in building Game Parks or wild life reserve areas with the purpose of attracting or connecting with tourism.
  • to support the Trang An Tourism Area to be recognised as the World Heritage Site by UNESCO which will take place at the beginning of 2014 at UNESCO’s meeting.

In this respect, Ambassador Magau informed the leaders of Ninh Binh that an MOU on Bio-diversity Management and Protection has been signed between South Africa and Vietnam. This MOU will serve as a framework to cooperate in the field of wildlife management and preservation.

Ambassador Magau agreed on the need to bridge the gap that exists in the level of political relations compared to trade relations between South Africa and Vietnam in general and with Ninh Binh in particular. This will entail assisting South African companies wishing to do business with Vietnam, especially with Ninh Binh in the areas of agriculture and bio-diversity cooperation. She also promised to convey the request to South Africa to support Trang An to become the UNESCO World Heritage Site and to share the expertise in wildlife preservation and in building the wildlife park in Ninh Binh.

In the afternoon, the South African Ambassador visited the biggest furniture company, Tai Anh Furniture Company in Gian Khau IDZ. The Director of the company, Mr Tai, expressed the company’s desire to establish a Saw Mill in South Africa and an interest in importing hard wood from Africa through South Africa. The company imports wood from Africa in countries such as the DRC, Gabon; Togo etc.

With regard to opportunities for cooperation in training, Mr Tai said that the company is willing to receive South African workers for training in furniture - making skills. In addition, he is also interested in doing business with South Africa in:

    • Rice, cement and garment export to South Africa/ Africa
    • Furniture skills training
    • Timber import (hard woods such as: tali, bobinga etc.) of about 50,000-100,000m3/ year

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