Russian-South African trade turnover may be far higher than current $1 bln, says Putin

The trade turnover between Russia and South Africa should be much higher than last year’s $1 bln, Russian President Vladimir Putin said at a meeting with South African President Cyril Ramaphosa on Wednesday.

In 2018, bilateral trade gained 28.5% to $1 bln, he said. “Of course, that is not enough, … that figure is too small. We can do much more and hopefully our today’s contacts will boost that development,” Putin said.

Russia cooperates with South Africa in many areas, such as the development of resources, energy, industry, transport, agriculture and the humanitarian field, Russian President said, adding that he finds it symbolic that the meeting is taking place on the sidelines of the first Russia-Africa summit.

On October 23-24, the resort city of Sochi is hosting the Russia-Africa Summit, co-chaired by Russian President Vladimir Putin and Egypt’s head of state Abdel Fattah al-Sisi. The leaders of all 54 African countries have been invited to come, and at least 40 of them have confirmed their participation. Eight major African integration associations and organizations are also involved in the event. On the summit’s sidelines, an economic forum is taking place, in which the continent’s heads of state and representatives of the business community and government agencies participate. The Roscongress Foundation is the organizer of the event, and TASS is the official photo host agency of the summit and economic forum.