Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development Minister Thoko Didiza and United States Ambassador to South Africa, Lana Marks, have agreed to establish a technical task team that will work on facilitating market access of agricultural products.
Minister Didiza and Ambassador Marks made the agreement during a virtual meeting held on Tuesday. The meeting discussed agricultural trade relations of mutual interest to both countries.
At the meeting, Didiza noted and expressed appreciation of the increase in exports of citrus from South Africa to the US market.
Such an increase is encouraging she said while also expressing the hope that this will translate to other agricultural products getting into the US market.
“Increasing agricultural production is important for food security as well as contributing to the economy through trade,” Didiza said.
The Minister said she believes that the transformation of the sector, as envisaged through the Agriculture and Agro-processing Master Plan will ensure that “as a country we can increase our volumes for trade, which will bring great benefits for the country’s economy.”
She also noted the 15% contribution to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by the agricultural sector to the economy, and attributes part of the growth to continued growth in the exports from South Africa.