Several Dutch companies plan to expand their investments in South Africa in key areas such as health, cybersecurity and agricultural innovation.
At the start of April, 25 Dutch companies visited South Africa to explore business opportunities in these sectors. This was the second physical Dutch trade mission to the African continent since the outbreak of the pandemic. Partnerships and deals were shaped in meetings in Gauteng, Limpopo and the Western Cape, the Dutch embassy said.
“Face to face interaction is crucial for business to flourish. Trade missions are a very effective tool to generate business contacts and contracts. Agriculture, healthcare and cybersecurity are sectors where we see a lot of potential for growth.
“This trade mission saw more than 120 one-on-one business meetings take place in one week.” said Han Peters, ambassador of the Netherlands to South Africa.
He added that it is beneficial to the South African economy and society that the Netherlands and South Africa have strong economic ties, as foreign direct investment (FDI) is a driver of job creation.
The Netherlands is South Africa’s second-largest source of FDI, with 19.3% of all FDI originating from the Netherlands. According to estimates from 2020, around 350,000 people are employed directly by EU companies operating in South Africa.
Data from SARS shows that the Netherlands is South Africa’s seventh-largest trading partner. In 2021, the value of imports and exports between the two countries was R85 billion, with a positive trade balance of R37.6 billion for South Africa.