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Don’t let Distance Deter you from Doing Business – Ambassador Mpahlwa Tells SA and Russian Business people


The South African Ambassador to Russia, Mr Mandisi Mpahlwa urged business people from South Africa and Russia not to be deterred by the distance between the two countries in their efforts to do business in either country. Mpahlwa was speaking in Vladivostok, Russia yesterday on the final day of the 6th Investment and Trade Initiative (ITI) to Russia undertaken by the Department of Trade and Industry (the dti) from Monday. The objective of the ITI was to increase trade and investment between South Africa and Russia.

“South African and Russian companies can succeed in doing business across the world. Where there is will there is way. Business people always have to contend with various challenges whenever they do business in various parts of the world. But these are not insurmountable. Dedicated and keen business people do venture out and succeed where not everyone wants to go due to various hurdles, including the distance and lack of direct flights as it’s the case between South Africa and Russia,” said Minister Mpahlwa.

Mpahlwa,also said he was excited about the outcome of the ITI, considering that it was the first one in the eastern part of Russia. He expressed optimism that the interest shown by Russian and South African business people to do business with each other, could result in some South African companies products to the Russia’s Eastern Region in particular. 

One of the South African business people, Mr Grant Rousseauof KAMA Industries said the meetings that he held with the Russians were positive.

Even though agreements and deals could not be signed and sealed in few days, I’m positive that the discussions I had with potential clients and partners will yield positive results soon and we can start exporting our products to Vladivostok,” saidRousseau.

Khonje Designs Jewellery representative, Ms Mariette du Plessis said although she was not coming back to the country with tangible deals, she managed to bench mark with the local jewellers and people liked the products and made comments on how they could better suit the Russian market.

The ITI included a trade and investment seminar which was addressed by Ambassador Mpahlwa, business-to-business meetings, round table discussions and site visits to the Russian companies.

Sidwell Medupe-Departmental Spokesperson                                
Tel: (012) 394 1650
Mobile: 079 492 1774
Issued by: The Department of Trade and Industry
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