Interview: China critical to BRICS’ future development — BRICS Business Council leader

Published 4 September by Xiong Maoling, Mathieu Wintrebert

XIAMEN, China, Sept. 4 (Xinhua) — China is a very important anchor of BRICS and is critical to its future development, chairman of South Africa BRICS Business Council has told Xinhua here on the sidelines of the ongoing BRICS summit.
Despite the sluggish economic situation in certain member countries, “all the ingredients are there for us to be successful,” said Iqbal Surve on Sunday, as leaders of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) are gathering here for the bloc’s 9th summit.
Having visited China 15 times since 2007, Surve said he is amazed every time he comes back by how different parts of the country have developed. “Certainly China is leading the way,” he said.
As Chinese President Xi Jinping called on BRICS to expand the coverage of its cooperation at the opening ceremony of the BRICS Business Forum, Surve said he personally welcomed the initiative. “That can only benefit the people of those countries.”
During the Xiamen summit, China will hold the Dialogue of Emerging Market and Developing Countries, where leaders of Egypt, Guinea, Mexico, Tajikistan and Thailand will join the BRICS leaders to discuss global development cooperation and South-South cooperation.
Surve thinks the idea of BRICS Plus fits the bloc’s aim to help people overcome challenges, lift people out of poverty and support people in meeting their aspirations.
The South African businessman also lauded BRICS’ rapid development in the past decade. “I’m actually astounded by the speed at which we’ve been able to achieve outcomes. I think it’s unprecedented,” he said, citing the BRICS’ New Development Bank (NDB) as an example.
The NDB, which was opened in Shanghai in 2015, approved loans totaling 1.55 billion U.S. dollars last year to seven programs on sustainable development and is expected to offer loans of 2.5 billion U.S. dollars this year. The bank launched its Africa Regional Center last month.
As the chairman of Sekunjalo Investment Holdings, Surve also expressed the hope that when making investment decisions, the NDB will really take into account the fact that the global economy has been digitalized.
“Investment has to take place in digitalization. It has to take place in technology and we can no longer think that investing in infrastructure is sufficient,” he said.
Speaking about the development of African economies, Surve said it’s important to promote the market integration of African economies in areas such as technology transfers, technology investments, green economy, sustainable development, and so on.
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Naspers and BizNews no different from Bell Pottinger

Published 31 July 2017, by Dr Iqbal Survé

I have been reading with interest how Bell Pottinger used, not only their own platforms, but also those of other media houses in an attempt to change South Africa’s narrative.

In essence, Bell Pottinger was peddling fake news on behalf of the much alleged corrupt and money-grabbing Gupta family.

When the tide turned against Bell Pottinger and when they were unmasked as using fake news, they were rightly ridiculed and condemned as agents working against the majority of South Africans.

Bell Pottinger, contracted by the Gupta family, has been condemned for trying to influence the South African narrative around fighting embezzlement, fraud and state and corporate capture.

They manufactured news and promoted the notion of White Monopoly Capital, Black First Land First and others.

his fake news was swallowed and sent out so easily by our competitor, Naspers Media24 and their surrogate, BizNews.

But they also used fake news when the Sekunjalo-led consortium was purchasing Independent Media.

They used their considerable resources to malign Independent Media, me in my personal capacity and as executive chairman both of Sekunjalo and Independent Media.

Their fake news attacks became increasingly vicious and spurious after the sale of Independent Media was completed.

It became clear to me that Naspers Media24 and their surrogate speak with forked tongues when it comes to the creation of fake news. They attacked Bell Pottinger for peddling fake news yet they are guilty of the same.

Please read the full article here.

OPINION : Why Brics is important to SA

Published 31 July 2017, by Dr Iqbal Survé

When you identify an opportunity grab it, steer it and keep it on course with everything you have. I believe in steering true north, and now we have an opportunity to chart a new course for the great SAS South Africa. As the chairperson of the Brics – Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa – business council South Africa chapter; as an innovative entrepreneur and businessman, and above all else, a South African, I have many concerns.Our high unemployment rate, educating our youth, equipping them with relevant skills, building infrastructure, our gross domestic product (GDP) and attracting foreign direct investment are high on my agenda. There is no argument that we are dealing with one of the most important destructive apartheid legacies, second-class education – which led to a myriad of social evils. The results of which need more than just two decades to repair.

We have to credit our government for realising the goal for SA to be a partner in this multinational forum. The state continues to amend policies and laws to create attractive conditions to draw investments.

It was after intense lobbying with economic giants and wealth-creating nations, Brazil, Russia, India and China, that we joined the partnership seven years ago. We set ourselves on a course and to roll back centuries of economic drought.

Brics gives us an opportunity to create jobs, and work in tangent with the partnership to re-skill and up-skill our workforce.

It is not up to the government alone to fix this. The state is not a creator of a lot of jobs. This is where the private sector has a role to play, to work hand in hand with the government. It is without question; for our economy to grow, we need to create jobs for millions of young people, SA has participated in many multinational institutions, such as the UN, the AU, and the G20. Our partnership with Brics is not meant to be at the exclusion of other investment partners such as the EU and North America. It is intended to augment the partnership and draw increased investment.

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