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SA's new comms minister talks up ICT collaboration with China

SA's new comms minister talks up ICT collaboration with China

Newly-appointed communications minister Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams says collaboration between SA and China is key to drive economic growth and the rapid adoption of ICT.

According to a Department of Communications (DOC) statement, Ndabeni-Abrahams made the comments at a SA-China roundtable discussion on Friday, when she emphasised the value of partnerships between the nations.

The minister's sentiments echo president Cyril Ramaphosa's statement in July on the importance of forging international cooperation to achieve success in science and technology-driven projects, adding that SA will further deepen relations with China.

At the Friday event, Ndabeni-Abrahams was joined by a Chinese delegation that included Gao Xiang, vice-minister from the Bureau of International Cooperation of the Cyberspace Administration of China.

According to the DOC, the roundtable discussion was a way to strengthen relations both at governmental and business levels by sharing information and lessons on the growth of ICT and other related industries.

The areas identified for possible collaboration include the digital economy, cyber security and e- government.

"Delegates agreed that collaboration and partnerships are key to building sustainable industries that are able to create jobs and contribute towards the growth of the economy," says the department.

"South Africa and China enjoy robust trade relations, with bilateral trade volumes reaching $39.17 billion in 2017. According to Stats SA, China has been South Africa's biggest trade partner for nine consecutive years, and South Africa has retained its position as China's biggest trade partner in Africa for eight consecutive years."

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