BAGUIO CITY – South African Ambassador to the Philippines Martin Slabber wants businesses in his country to have stronger ties with their Philippine counterparts to boost the robust economy of both nations which is anchored on mining, agriculture and tourism.
Slabber, who was in town with a lean and mean delegation, met with officials of the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry – Baguio-Benguet Chapter (PCCI-BBC) to look for ways on how to enhance future partnerships that will increase trading among both countries in terms of mining, agriculture, tourism and cultural exchange.
“We want to keep our doors open to better ties among our local businessmen. Our country is a strong mining nation which we want to share to our counterparts in the Philippines to make mining vibrant in the coming years.” Ambassador Slabber stressed.
The South African ambassador was also open to suggestions from the PCCI-BBC for the local group of businessmen to have a twinning agreement with one of the chambers in their country to help boost trade and commerce, especially on food and agriculture, among the involved local traders.
According to him, South Africa will also be open for an educational exchange among students of his nation and the Philippines for today’s youth to be fully educated on an enhanced international cultural exchange that will make them fully aware of socio-economic policies applicable for implementation in both countries in the future.
Slabber claimed aside from mining, South African businessmen are looking for potential investment opportunities in the country where they could partner with Filipinos to help or mote locally produced products in the global market and for South African products to be given access to the international scene beneficial to the interest of the people of both countries.
For his part, Godfrey Oliphant, Deputy Minister of the Department of Mineral Resources of South Africa, emphasized the need for both countries to maximize their commonalities considering that the global trend now is economy and economic diplomacy.
Modesto Imayaho, PCCI-BBC president, expressed his gratitude to the South African delegation that visited the city, saying that local businessmen are optimistic that they can explore partnerships among them and their counterparts to help increase the trading between the two countries to be able to effectively and efficiently market their respective products.
Imayaho claimed local businessmen have great interest in the potential partnerships that will be established between the parties concerned to help in the advancement of the businesses in the two countries and for local businesses to be able to expand their network pursuant to the principle of international relatinships.
Joining Imayaho in the PCCI-BCC delegation are PCCI-North Luzon Area Vice President Engr. Alfonso T. Lao PCCI-CAR Regional Governor Juan Johnny dela Cruz, PCCI-BBC Board Secretary Tom Panis, PCCI-BBC Auditor Deimler O. Cuyan, PCC-BBC former president Rhodora Ngolob and PCCI-BBC Director Mario Alzona, Jr. and PCCI-BBC Treasurer Dennis Sy.
By Dexter A. See