Nam business opportunities in Congo and DRCBy: JAN POOLMAN
NAMIBIAN businesspeople now have the opportunity to spread their wings to West Africa after Government obtained land in Congo Brazzaville and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
The Namibia Development Corporation (NDC) is busy developing designs for establishing trade and industrial estates in Lubumbashi in the DRC and Pointe Noire in Congo Brazzaville for the Ministry of Trade and Industry to create an enabling environment for the local private sector to do business in these countries.
“Three hectares of virgin land were secured at Pointe Noire as a donation and we are in the process of securing 40 hectares of land in Lubumbashi, highly likely to be a donation from DRC as well,” Wessel !Nanuseb, senior manager of human Resources and corporate affairs at the NDC, told The Namibian yesterday.
“The Namibian market is small and Government resolved to facilitate opportunities for Namibian businesspeople to expand their markets into West Africa with the two Congos as gateway,” he said.
!Naruseb added that land owned by Namibia in sovereign countries can serve as a base and footprint for Namibians to establish and expand their businesses in the Congos and vice versa.
“In that case, opportunities for trade and investment are unlimited given the market size of consumers in these two Congos alone. Companies that should grab this opportunity should be the likes of Namibia Breweries, Ohorongo Cement, the salt, meat and fish industries, grain and maize industry, the chicken industry as well as the engineering and financial industries,” !Nanuseb said.
He said in light of increased momentum towards regional integration of the member states of the Southern African Development Community (SADC), as well as global drive for South-South cooperation in trade and economic development, it is prudent for strategic imperatives that usage of these facilities would be inclusive in nature, whilst Namibian businesses will enjoy preferential treatment.
“The land is strategically located to enhance and could foster trade between Namibia and the two respective countries, whereby a market for Namibian products and services is at hand as well as a source of products from the Congos that could be procured by Namibians.”
!Nanuseb said these projects constitute a multi-million investment and budgetary provision has been made for their implementation over a phased period. He added that given the private-public-partnership initiatives, eventual involvement of private sector investment is envisaged in the long run as well.
The NDC has called for expression of interest for demand of business space. The feedback will be taken into consideration when deciding on the designing scope and the type of buildings.
About 30 business entities have already expressed interest to spread their wings to West Africa.
Any other companies interested to expand their business to Congo Brazzaville and the DRC can contact Koos van Staden at NDC or at 081 293 2073.