Johannesburg - South Africa has a huge advantage as an investment destination, although the nationalisation debate is off-putting, India’s High Commissioner Virendra Gupta said on Wednesday.
“At the moment South Africa has a huge relative advantage... but the nationalisation debate does detract investors,” he said on the sidelines of a seminar in Johannesburg on Indian-South African business relations.
Gupta said he was “not nervous at all” about nationalisation becoming policy and saw the current debate as merely rhetorical.
“I’m advising Indian businesses to come. Various government functionaries have gone out of their way to reassure nationalisation is not government policy.”
However, he did point out that opportunities in the rest of Africa were continuing to improve. The biggest opportunity in South Africa was the size of the market, Gupta said.
At the moment, total investment between South Africa and India was about $7bn to $8bn, although the majority of this flowed into South Africa from India.
Gupta said in five or six years this would be more evenly balanced, at an estimated total investment between the two countries of about $15bn.
The seminar was organised by Business Unity SA and the Confederation of Indian Industry.