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Minister Costello to drive trade and investment during visit to South Africa

Trade, Press Releases, Africa, 2013

Minister for Trade and Development, Joe Costello T.D., will examine ways to expand trade and investment between Ireland and South Africa as part of his four-day visit to the country, which begins tomorrow (March 14). 

Minister Costello will meet with the South African Ministry of Trade & Industry, members of the recently established regional Irish business networking organisation Business Ireland Southern Africa (BISA); Enterprise Ireland and prominent members of the South Africa business community. South Africa is a priority market under the Government’s Trade Strategy, with Irish exports to South Africa reaching almost €1bn annually.

Last December, Minister Costello led an Enterprise Ireland trade mission of 37 Irish companies to South Africa. This visit will provide the opportunity for further work to drive the expansion of Irish firms’ exports to the country.

Minister Costello said:  “I will examine how best the Government can support Irish companies to enter this crucial market. South Africa is the gateway to Southern Africa and an important market for Irish goods and services. We are determined to realise further trade and investment opportunities which will benefit Ireland and Africa in the long-term.

“In 2011, my Department launched Ireland’s Africa Strategy, which sets out a comprehensive framework for our business, political and development relations over the coming years.  In South Africa our Embassy is working closely with State Agencies, including Enterprise Ireland, to facilitate business and trade partnerships.  This work supports jobs in Ireland and is an important part of the Government’s Trade Strategy and Action Plan for Jobs.”

Minister Costello will also attend St Patrick’s Day events in Johannesburg and Cape Town, during which Table Mountain will be turned green. Tourism Ireland has designated South Africa as a priority developing market.

Minster Costello said:

”Over 70 million people around the world claim links with Ireland. Saint Patrick’s Day is a truly unique opportunity to reconnect them with their heritage and to showcase Irish hospitality and tourism to a huge global audience.

Africa’s two most famous sites – the Pyramids and Table Mountain – will turn green for St Patrick’s Day. This is a highly visible way for us to illustrate the strong connections that bind Ireland and Africa.”

This visit is the second leg of a three country visit which also includes visits to Mozambique and Tanzania.