Saudi Arabia pledges to invest R133bn in SA energy sector

President Cyril Ramaphosa’s ambitious plan to attract $100bn to kick start the country’s struggling economy got a major boost on Thursday, when Saudi Arabia committed to invest $10bn (about R133bn) in the country. This is expected to be invested in the energy and power creation sectors.

Ramaphosa met with King Salman bin Abdulaziz al Saud in the port city of Jeddah on Thursday. 

South Africa imports an estimated 47% of its oil from Saudi Arabia, and Pretoria regards the country as a strategic partner in the Middle East. Total trade amounted to more than R56bn in 2017.

The country is also a large investor in South Africa, especially in the area of renewable energy.

Ramaphosa is on an aggressive plan to woo investors to deal with high unemployment rates and deepening poverty.

He is on a three-country visit that started in Abuja, Nigeria and will end in the United Arabia Emirates.

On Wednesday Ramaphosa met with Nigerian President Mahammadu Buhari in an effort to bolster often tense relations between the continent’s power houses.

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