MINSK, 15 March (BelTA) – Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Belarus to the Republic of South Africa Aleksandr Sidoruk talked about details of an ambitious project Belarus intends to implement in South Arica in a regular episode of BelTA's YouTube project After the Fact: Lukashenko's Decisions.
In his words, South Africa shows a very constructive approach to joint work with Belarus and the approach is demonstrated at all levels. For instance, Belarusian haul trucks BelAZ have been used in open pits in South Africa for over 20 years. “A local company not only sells them but offers maintenance, spare parts and acts as a subcontractor for transporting valuable minerals,” the ambassador remarked.
Belarusian agricultural machines are known well in South Africa as well. “We have resumed deliveries of fully assembled tractors and other kinds of agricultural machines. We are now working on setting up an assembly enterprise in an industrial zone in South Africa where, I hope, our tractors will soon be assembled under a local brand,” the diplomat said.
Aleksandr Sidoruk stressed that this assembly enterprise will be the first of its kind in South Africa. “South Africa assembles cars and trucks but no tractors yet. Once we penetrate the market, we will be able to occupy our niche in order to later on use South Africa as a springboard for advancing into other countries of the region,” he explained. “It is very important to occupy this niche now because a free trade zone agreement has been signed and has come into effect on the African continent. Therefore, if we approach this investment project correctly, later on we will be able to freely export products assembled on the African continent from one African country to all the corners of the vast African continent.”
It is this kind of manufacturing cooperation instead of simple trade that strongly interests South Africa because it gives technologies and investments in addition to creating new jobs. “It is a very important task for them as a state. They focus their attention on it,” the ambassador remarked.
In his words, the project to set up the assembly enterprise is being implemented in a normal manner and is supposed to reach the final stage soon.