Zambia, South Africa trade declines

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JOHANNESBURG – Bilateral trade between Africa’s largest economy, South Africa, and one of the continent’s rising economic stars, Zambia, dropped significantly last year from a high of US$1.5 billion to just under US$1billion though the trade balance remained in favour of South Africa.
But South Africa’s department of trade and industry indicated at the weekend that efforts are being made to recoup the losses and expand trade relations further.
Acting deputy director-general Riaan le Roux said a target had been set to grow bilateral trade by about 25 percent or US$250 million in 2011.
South Africa is Zambia’s principal trading partner in the Southern African Development Community (SADC), while Zambia is South Africa’s third-largest trading partner in the region.
Speaking at a Zambia-South Africa business forum in Johannesburg, Business Unity South Africa chief executive officer Jerry Vilakazi lamented the fact that intra-African trade remained low at around 10 percent of total trade.

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