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IETF 2009 - 18th International Engineering & Technology Fair Print E-mail
Written by Vijay   
Saturday, 20 December 2008
South Africa as Partner Country second time in IETF 2009

New Delhi : Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), is organizing the 18th International Engineering & Technology Fair (IETF2009) from 23-26 February 2009 at Bangalore International Exhibition Centre (BIEC), Bengaluru. On behalf of the Republic of South Africa, the Department of Trade & Industry (DTI), Republic of South Africa has accepted the invitation of "Partner Country" status for IETF 2009.  

The 18th IETF 2009 is structured as a comprehensive B2B event segmented into well defined relevant sections of the engineering and manufacturing industry.

These sections are represented by the focused business fairs/pavilions at IETF 2009 namely Automation/Robotics 2009, Energy & Environment 2009, Manufacturing India 2009, ASEAN & IETF Global 2009, Partmart & Autocare 2009, Photoshop India 2009, SAFE 2009. A South Africa Day will also be organized during IETF2009 which will include an Investment Opportunities Seminar, One-to-one meetings,  Cultural Events, dinner etc.

This is the second time that South Africa will be participating as Partner Country in IETF. The first time was in 2005 which was very helpful in generating awareness about South Africa as the producer of engineering and technology products. About 45 companies / institutions from South Africa participated in the IETF2005. Success can be gauged simply from the trade figures as the trade got doubled up in three years from US$ 3.1 billion in 2004-05 to US$ 6.2 billion in 2007-08.

The Department of Trade and Industry, South Africa has identified India as natural trade partner and have adopted aggressive marketing initiatives to tap into the large and growing Indian market and also to seek Foreign Direct Investment from India. The participation in IETF as partner country is part of the above planned strategy to aggressively position South Africa as an alternative supplier of technology products to the otherwise traditional supplier of technology products like OECD countries. Participating at IETF 2009  as Partner Country will provide South Africa with a unique opportunity to focus and showcase industry, technology products and services, government initiatives, trade and investment opportunities and tourism opportunities.

India-South Africa economic relations have been growing rapidly and the momentum has especially picked up over the last five years.  India-South Africa bilateral trade has grown rapidly rising from US$ 1.8 billion in 2001-02 to US$ 6.2 billion during 2007-08. South Africa is India's largest market in Africa and our exports to South Africa have grown from just US$ 352 million in 2001-02 to over US$ 2.25 billion in 2007-08.  India's imports from South Africa have also been growing substantially, rising from US$ 1.44 billion in 2001-02 to almost US$ 2.47 billion in 2006-07.

South Africa, and, in particular, Johannesburg is the preferred location for a number of Indian companies that have based their Africa headquarters here.  Some of the big names include the TATA Group, Ranbaxy and Mahindras, as well as financial institutions like State Bank of India, ICICI Bank and EXIM Bank.  A second important element of the growing bilateral economic relationship is the relative complementarity between the two economies.  This is reflected in the two-way flow of FDI, with several Indian companies making sizable investments in South Africa and major South African companies doing the same in India.  A third aspect is the active exchange of business delegations, and the expanding institutional framework that underpins such exchanges.

Despite the substantial increase in bilateral trade, there is a feeling on both sides that it is still well below the potential.  This is reflected in the fact that India does not figure amongst South Africa's top five trading partners for imports as well as exports.  Recognising the considerable scope for a further expansion in bilateral trade, the Joint Statement by the two sides during the visit of our Prime Minister in October 2006 has set the ambitious target of trebling trade by 2010.  Both the governments are taking lot of initiatives such as PTA agreements, various agreements at industry / sectoral level, strategic level etc. to increase the trade further, which is being well supported by the captains of industry from both sides.

IETF is the biennial flagship event of CII organized since 1975, and is one of the largest events of its kind in Asia. The IETF is used as a platform by countries and companies to showcase entrepreneurial and technological expertise, and for forming strategic partnerships, business networking and international benchmarking.

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