South Africa has invited Indian pharmaceutical companies to invest in the country in order to contribute to growing the country’s economy, create employment and accelerate transformation in the sector.
Addressing potential investors at a pharmaceutical investment seminar in Hyderabad, India on Monday, Trade and Industry Deputy Minister Bulelani Magwanishe said South Africa has launched a major investment recruitment drive of $100 billion over the next five years.
“Our visit to India prioritises investment in the pharmaceuticals, medical devices and consumables. These are the main sectors that we have identified for growth and industrial value chain. These provide unlimited opportunities for the Indian companies to invest in as the South African pharmaceutical sector is the largest drug market in Africa,” said Magwanishe.
The engagement session was hosted by the dti in partnership with the Indian Chamber of Commerce.
In 2015 the South African pharmaceutical total market value was estimated at $3.3 billion. By 2019, the South African exports of pharmaceutical products will increase to approximately $526 million.
“This presents infinite opportunities for investors to access multiple markets in Africa,” said Magwanishe.
He said the South African government sought to construct a globally-competitive industrial economy through various initiatives and programmes such as the development of Special Economic Zones (SEZs).
He singled out the Dube Trade Port SEZ in Durban as critical to expanding relations between South Africa and India.
“The Dube Trade Port is developing a pharmaceutical cluster which provides an integrated infrastructure and services for ease of doing business in the trade zone.
“Equipped with shared utilities, this will further enhance competition and access to global markets. The SEZ has about 10 pharmaceutical companies with an estimated value of $370 million worth of investment being negotiated,” said Magwanishe.
He told the businesspeople he was impressed by the public and private sector collaboration he witnessed during the visit to the Genome Valley Knowledge Park earlier in the day.
The ecosystem designed to support the development of research, innovation and the incubation of small, medium and micro enterprises (SMMEs) there is particularly remarkable.
“I wish to encourage the provincial Government of Telangana and Genome Valley Knowledge Park to partner with our research institutions and special economic zones in developing such an ecosystem for South Africa.
“India and South Africa should collaborate on initiatives directly addressing the Fourth Industrial Revolution in order to collectively subdue the triple challenges of poverty, inequality and unemployment.”
Magwanishe urged the Indian Chamber to engage with the South African Chamber to facilitate and enhance direct interaction between businesspeople from the two countries.