|Follow us on:|
This year, Chinese New Year – The Year of the Monkey – begins on Monday February 8. Chinese New Year sees the largest annual human migration in the world as millions of people in China make the journey home.
“The Monkey is known as an auspicious symbol, thus heralding a year that looks forward to agility, inventive solutions, innovative endeavours, and flourishing business achievements,” said Zuma.
Zuma also exhorted “the South African Chinese community to make increased job creation through the establishment and growth of small businesses and individual entrepreneurs, be one such goal we can set ourselves this coming year”.
“2016 is going to be a hectic year with actions that will include job losses,” Zwane told a business forum.
The government has said 32,000 workers in the sector, which contributes around 7 percent to Africa’s most industrialised economy, could lose their jobs following a slump in commodity prices due to slowing economic growth in China, the world’s biggest metals consumer.
South Africa-China trade jumped by 32 per cent between 2012 from R205 billion to R270 billion in 2013, making China the country’s largest trading partner.
South Africa through its partnership with China is joining in attempts by the BRICS bloc to upend the international order by fashioning a coalition to resist what these countries view as American arrogance.
“While the two countries are strikingly different in their cultural, political and socio-economic orientation, they are very close in the positions they take on key issues affecting mankind,” South Africa’s Foreign Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane said last year, referring to common positions on Syria, Palestine and Iraq.
South Africa, one of Africa’s largest economies alongwith Nigeria, has become an increasingly important port of call for China as a gateway to the continent.
Official Chinese data shows trade between China and Africa exceeded $220 billion in 2014.
China has been Africa’s largest trading partner for six years in a row with diplomatic ties with 50 African countries.