Dr. Said Jubran Al
Qahtani (left) presenting
a memento to Dr. Iqbal
Surve, co- chairman of
the Saudi Arabia-South
Africa Business Council
Cape Town, South Africa — 11 June 2012 – The governments of South Africa and Saudi Arabia have set up a R20 billion holding company for mining, as well as farming and petrochemical investments, as both countries seek to diversify their economies.

Reuters quotes government officials as saying that Saudi Arabian South African Holdings (SASAH), a 50-50 joint venture company, will help identify potential projects and partners in the top two economies in Africa and the Middle East.

South Africa has been courting Gulf countries, including the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and the world’s largest oil producer, Saudi Arabia, to help offset poor economic growth in major trading partner Europe.

South African petrochemicals group Sasol, the world’s top maker of motor fuel from coal, could be one of the companies potentially interested, said Iqbal Surve, co-chairman of the Saudi Arabia South Africa Business Council.

“The Saudis are also looking to tap into the expertise that we have in specific sectors in South Africa,” he added at a trade ministry briefing.

Source: Reuters Africa. For more information, click here.