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SA lobbying for Brics bank location

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Old 07-11-2014, 03:25 PM   #1
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Sa SA lobbying for Brics bank location

Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies says it would be an advantage if the Brics Development Bank was to be located in Johannesburg.

The minister said this when briefing the media on the expectations of the upcoming Brics meeting, scheduled to take place in Brazil next week.

“… South Africa has indicated its willingness and desire to offer Johannesburg as a host domicile for the bank.

“We think that from a point of view of the functioning of the institution, with some of its key roles, funding infrastructure and investing in the African continent, the bank being located in South Africa is going to be a huge advantage from the point of view of the advocacy of the bank.

“It is not limited to that. We do of course have the connections, the facilities and the ability to run an institution that deals with places other than the African continent. We do think that the location in Johannesburg will be a huge advantage in terms of ... a new institution here and jobs. But our prime motivation and our prime argument is in terms of being able to play that role in an optimal manner,” he said on Friday.

Minister Davies said while South Africa has lobbied to have the bank in South Africa, he noted that contrary to media reports, no decision had been taken on the location of the Brics Development Bank.

“It has been agreed by the heads of state that any decision on the location of the bank will be taken by them. Anybody who says there is a decision up to now, there is no such decision and anybody who says there is a decision is simply speculating.”

The sixth Brics meeting follows last year’s meeting in eThekwini in KwaZulu-Natal, where a decision was taken for the bank to be established.

The bank, which the five member countries – Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa – decided to establish at the fifth meeting, will not limit its mandate to funding projects in the Brics countries.

Minister Davies said the bank also had a mandate to invest in infrastructure in other developing countries, particularly in Africa.

He said, meanwhile, that a study that was commissioned by South Africa will be tabled at the meeting of trade ministers next week. The study proposes that value added trade investment cooperation takes place between the Brics countries.

Minister Davies said the study was aimed at ensuring that the countries all achieve mutual trade opportunities that will not be biased or favour trade ambitions of other countries.

Another report on a discussion that has taken place about international investment agreements will also be tabled.

The minister said this report was shaped by a debate taking place internationally and that there is a review in the way that international investment agreements have been structured.

Minister Davies would not, however, detail the contents of the two reports, as he did not want to preempt discussions at next week’s meeting.

Minister Davies said, meanwhile, that the Brics Business Council – launched at the eThekwini summit – would also table its own report on how governments can make it easier for businessmen from the five countries to do business.

The council, headed by billionaire businessman Patrice Motsepe, will also discuss trade opportunities that business people can explore. -
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