The partnership seeks to develop support services for UK and South African companies and promote business environment improvements. The DIT and Wesgro will work alongside stakeholders from the private and public sectors as well as on a national and local level to meet this objective and wider aims.
Integral to this MOU is the UK’s involvement in Wesgro’s Consultative Forum, which will work with UK companies to identify and address barriers to doing business in the Western Cape.
Commenting on the signing of the MoU, The UK’s Trade Director for Southern Africa, Elena Williams said: “Bilateral trade between the UK and South Africa stands at nearly £9bn for 2016. We want to continue to build on this positive relationship through our new partnership with Wesgro, which will help us strengthen ties. By signing this MoU we have taken a concrete step to sharing the insights, expertise and intelligence that will benefit both the Western Cape and the UK as we seek to deepen and strengthen our trade ties”.
Wesgro CEO, Tim Harris added: "Between January 2003 and June 2016, the Western Cape attracted 82 foreign direct investment projects valued at £1.15bn from the UK. The UK is also the Cape's second largest trading partner, accounting for over £431m in exports. Building on this important relationship is therefore critical for our regional economy, its growth, and the many jobs we seek to create. Wesgro looks forward to working with the Department for International Trade, as we build on this strong foundation, and further boost trade and investment between our two economies."