GOVERNMENT OF THE KINGDOM OF ESWATINI

MINISTRY OF COMMERCE, INDUSTRY AND TRADE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

ESWATINI IMPLORES TAIWAN TRADE COUNCIL TO SET UP REGIONAL OFFICE IN THE KINGDOM

 

Mbabane, Eswatini – Government’s Economic Turnaround Strategy is already taking shape as the Kingdom has scaled its efforts to promote Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) through engaging international strategic partners.

Minister of Commerce, Industry and Trade Manqoba Khumalo is currently in the Republic of China, Taiwan, where he is having a series of meetings aimed at enhancing trade between the two countries. On Monday, the Minister met with officials from the Taiwan Economic Trade Development Council (TAITRA) as well as the Chairperson of the Taiwan Sugar Corporation, Charles Huang. He is also due to meet the Taiwan Africa Business Association.

Discussions with TAITRA were focused on the following key areas:

  1. Expanding trade across the two countries to optimise the Economic Cooperation Agreement (ECA) by looking for further opportunities and encouraging Foreign Direct Investment into Eswatini;
  2. Lobbying TAITRA to set up their SADC regional office in Eswatini. Eswatini is set to become the economic hub for Africa, which is earmarked to be among the fastest growing economies globally.
  3. Requesting technical assistance in designing Eswatini’s economy and infrastructure to effectively support an export-based economy, which is how Taiwan turned its own fortunes around.

“TAITRA is seriously considering setting up in Eswatini. They also agreed to expand the participation of Taiwanese companies during this year’s Eswatini International Trade Fair (EITF), which we launched only last week, by at least 30 percent,” the Honourable Minister said.

Reciprocally, Eswatini will also increase its participation in the Taipei Trade Fair to be held in June this year. The Kingdom intends to occupy a whole pavilion instead of a stand.

ESWATINI TO SIGN ECA RULES OF PROCEDURE WITH TAIWAN

On another note, the Kingdom of Eswatini will this week finalise the Rules of Procedure for the Economic Cooperation Agreement (ECA).

Apart from finalising the rules of procedures, Minister Manqoba Khumalo also aims to persuade a major Taiwanese company to set up shop in Eswatini.

“A lot of work has gone into persuading this company but they are yet to make a formal commitment. I will spend time at their premises and hopefully persuade them to commit formally,” the Minister said.

Meanwhile, the Minister had a fruitful meeting with the Taiwan Sugar Corporation Chairman, Charles Huang. During their deliberations, they discussed how Taiwan Sugar had diversified its operations and how Eswatini could learn from their example. They also explored the possibility of exporting sugar to Taiwan.

Lastly, they discussed pork production using the latest technology since Taiwan is a net importer of pork. Taiwan Sugar Corporation is the leading pork producer in Taiwan.

The Minister also hopes to discuss beef exports into Taiwan.

Released by: Thabile Mdluli – Communication Officer

21 May 2019

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ESWATINI JOINS BID TO HOST AfCFTA SECRETARIAT

The Kingdom of Eswatini has officially joined the bid to host the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Secretariat.

Minister of Commerce, Industry and Trade Manqoba Khumalo has officially appointed a National Steering Committee to spearhead the process. The committee is headed by Business Eswatini Chief Executive Officer E. Nathi Dlamini.

Commissioning the steering committee at the Ministry’s conference room on February 7, 2019, the Minister said hosting the AfCFTA would come with huge benefits for the country.

“Hosting the AfCFTA would ensure that Eswatini becomes Africa’s commercial hub. The country will become a hive of business activities, through hosting various African Union meetings and thus enhancing tourism. Moreover, this will create about 200 jobs,” the Minister said.

He further assured the committee of His Majesty King Mswati III’s support as well as that of the Head of Government, His Excellency Ambrose Mandvulo Dlamini. The Prime Minister has since appointed a Cabinet Sub-Committee which will provide strategic support to the National Steering Committee.
The Cabinet Sub-Committee, which is led by the Minister of Commerce, Industry and Trade, also comprises Deputy Prime Minister Themba Masuku, Minister of Justice and Constitutional Affairs Pholile Shakantu, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Thuli Dladla as well as Minister of Tourism and Environmental Affairs Moses Vilakati.
“The Steering Committee will call upon the Sub-Committee as a resource. It will be responsible for, among other things, government to government engagements,” Minister Khumalo said.
He added that Eswatini’s Ambassador to Ethiopia Promise Msibi will also be playing a crucial role in the African Union space while Eswatini’s Director International Trade Newman Ntshangase and Under Secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Jennifer Neves will be providing technical support.
He urged the Steering Committee to get to work immediately and draw up a budget and working plan as time was of essence.
Meanwhile, Chairperson of the National Steering Committee E. Nathi Dlamini promised that the team would give it their all to ensure that Eswatini wins the bid to host the AfCFTA.
The AfCFTA National Steering Committee comprises the following members:
1. Mr E. Nathi Dlamini – Business Eswatini CEO (Chairman)
2. Mr Siboniso Nkambule – Principal Secretary - Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Trade
3. Ms Zandile Dlamini – Deputy Attorney General
4. Ms Dudu Nhlengetfwa – CEO - Federation of Swaziland Business Community (FESBC)
5. Ms Linda Nxumalo –CEO - Eswatini Tourism Authority (ETA)
6. Mr Mncedzi Ngomane –Head of Human Resources - MTN Eswatini
7. Ms Jennifer Neves – Under Secretary - Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation
8. Mr Newman Sizwe Ntshangase – Director for International Trade - Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Trade

 

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