November 05, 2019


JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA — Today, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s U.S.-Africa Business Center announced plans to revitalize its U.S.-South Africa Business Council with the intent of doubling American commercial investment in the region by 2025. The announcement was made during the South Africa Investment Forum with South African President Cyril Ramaphosa.

Currently, more than 600 American companies are investing in South Africa, contributing to approximately 10% of the country’s GDP. By 2025, the Council wants to see more than 1,000 U.S. companies operating and investing in South Africa, surpassing 15% in GDP contributions.

“When the Council was launched seven years ago, we had strong support from both the U.S. and South African government,” said Scott Eisner, President of the U.S.-Africa Business Center at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. “Today, thanks in part to President Ramaphosa’s commitment to economic reform in South Africa, the U.S.-South Africa Business Council is well-positioned to double down on its foreign direct investment in the region by 2025. We look forward to strengthening investment ties between the U.S. and South Africa by serving as a platform for commercial engagement at the most senior levels of business and government.”

At the event, it was also announced that Farid Fezoua, President and CEO of GE Africa and GE Healthcare Africa, will serve as the Chair of the council effective immediately.

“At GE we are proud of our long-standing partnership with South Africa, including localizing supply chains and supporting broad-based black economic empowerment, as we did through our partnership with Transnet,” said Fezoua. “We look forward to continued collaboration with the government and private sector of South Africa across energy, healthcare and aviation sectors.”

The mission of the U.S.-South Africa Business Council (USSABC) is to enrich investment and trade between the two countries; serve as a platform for commercial engagement at the highest levels of business and government; and enhance foreign direct investment in the Southern Africa region by U.S. and South African companies. As a hub for economic activity in the region, the USSABC is a formal commitment by the American business community to inclusive, long-term growth and investment in the economies of southern Africa. 

The U.S.-South Africa Business Council will offer a routine platform for dialogue between high-level business executives from both countries to exchange ideas, build mutual trust and understanding, and seek common ground on key trade and investment priorities. This will in turn lay the foundation for business leaders to convey more deeply informed views to the U.S. and South African governments; thereby, strengthening bilateral commercial relations.