SA Experts to take part in Russia’s Small Business Forum of the SCO and BRICS


A large delegation from South Africa will attend the 3rd Forum on Small Business of the SCO and BRICS Regions, which will take place om 28-29 September in the City of Ufa in Russia. Speakers from RSA will take part in the plenary session and a number of discussion meetings. Representatives of the business society and governmental bodies will participate in the Forum in order to strengthen and widen ties with entrepreneurs from Russia and other countries, as well as to find new business partners.

The Third Forum on Small Business of the SCO and BRICS Regions takes place in Ufa (Russia, Republic of Bashkortostan) on September 28-29, 2017. Over 1,300 delegates are expected to come from over 20 Russian regions and from abroad, including India, China, Brazil, South Africa, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, and Uzbekistan.

South African experts will speak at the plenary session Peculiarities, Role, and Place of Small Business in the SCO and BRICS Regional Economies. Achievements and Challenge as well as at the sessions Youth Entrepreneurship: A Major Vector of Business Cooperation in the SCO and BRICS, as well as Barrier-Free Cooperation in the SCO and BRICS. Among RSA’s speakers are the following:

  • Тебохо Секлохо Мешак, руководитель молодежной организации Next Generation, координатор молодежной контактной группы БРИКС в ЮАР, представитель Молодежного предпринимательского совета;
  • José Andre,  Managing Director at CAB Capital (PTY) Ltd;
  • Craig Appel, Department of Small Business Development.

The forum is organised by the Government of the Republic of Bashkortostan, State Committee of the Republic of Bashkortostan for Entrepreneurship and Tourism, and the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Republic of Bashkortostan. The forum is supported by the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Russian Federation and the SCO Business Council.

The highlight of the forum is the plenary session Peculiarities, Role, and Place of Small Business in the SCO and BRICS Regional Economies. Achievements and Challenges attended by the Head of the Republic of Bashkortostan, heads of relevant federal and regional ministries, representatives of the expert community and international delegations.

The list of the invited speakers includes the First Deputy Chairperson of the Russian Government Igor Shuvalov, Official Secretary – Deputy Minister of Economic Development of the Russian Federation Oleg Fomichev, Head of the Republic of Bashkortostan Rustem Khamitov, Vice-President of the Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry Elena Dybova, Director General of the SME Corporation Aleksandr Braverman, Director General of the Russian Export Center Petr Fradkov, Director General of the Agency for Strategic Initiatives Svetlana Chupsheva, Vice-President of Business Russia Nonna Kagramanyan, Executive Secretary of the SCO Business Council Sergey Kanavsky, President of the all-Russian NGO for small and medium-sized business OPORA RUSSIA Aleksander Kalinin, as well as the representatives of China and Kyrgyzstan. The session will be moderated by Farkhad Samedov, Deputy Prime-Minister of the Government of the Republic of Bashkortostan.

During the plenary session, the participants will discuss the regional peculiarities of small business development and the most promising market niches for entrepreneurs. The delegates will estimate the role of small business in various economies and analyze incentives for small business in Russian and the SCO and BRICS countries.

The forum will feature sessions on barrier-free cooperation in the SCO and BRICS; financial, legal, and infrastructural support to small business; support to export-oriented business. The participants will touch upon the issues of franchising, youth entrepreneurship, new digital technologies, etc. Special attention will be paid to the best practices of Russian and international small businesses. During the practical session, the participants will discuss the main mistakes of entrepreneurs, investment attraction mechanisms, and solutions to business obstructions.

Additional information support will be provided at the consultation platforms with representatives of the small business supporting organizations: Ministry of Economic Development of the Russian Federation, Corporation on Small Business Development, Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Russian Export Center, Agency for Strategic Initiatives, Business Russia, etc.

Apart from that, both days of the forum the participants will be offered to visit Business Without Borders, an international track of presentations of delegations and individuals. This initiative will help small businesses find interested partners, build relationships with decision makers, negotiate, and conclude promising contracts.

Official website:

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BRICS Bank prioritises raising funds for infrastructure

SABC News reports that the Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS members) New Development Bank (NDB) has its sights on raising 2.5 billion US Dollars within the next year, to put money behind infrastructure projects.

The 8th BRICS Leaders Summit took place at the Indian south west resort of Goa this past weekend (12-14 October) where President Jacob Zuma joined leaders of India (Prime Minister Narendra Modi), Brazil (President Dilma Rousseff), Russia (President Vladimir Putin) and China (President Xi Jinping) for the gathering.

The main aim behind the establishment of The BRICS New Development Bank was to assemble resources that would enable infrastructure for development projects in BRICS member countries.

The BRICS New Development Bank has been described by economists as a “game changer” in the evolution of financing, as well as a tool to “rebalance the global order with respect to development finance”.  The bank’s founding members have pledged to sow 100 billion US dollar capital base into the bank, China being the single largest contributor.

While many eyebrows have been raised about its existence, the bank believes that it is not  a substitute for the established multinational institutions, e.g the World Bank, African Development Bank, Asian Development Bank or the Development Bank of Latin America. Instead, Leslie Maasdorp, Deputy Chairperson of the New Development Bank says the NDB will work hand in hand with institutions already established.

“So we have got structured partnership with multinational banks and there is so much we can learn from these institutions. We were not set up to compete with these institutions but we can learn from them. It has been an exciting year but there are challenges ahead,” Maasdorp told SABC News.

The bank (headquartered in Shanghai, China) has already secured a rating from local rating agencies in addition to raising capital through the bond market and will also look to the private sector for resources into infrastructure development. The Chairperson of the Indian Chapter of the BRICS Business Council, Onkar Kanwar said: “Agriculture and energy are priority area of cooperation of our economies.  We should also collaborate in developing energy efficiency technologies.”

The bank’s Africa Regional Centre will be headquartered in Johannesburg within the first quarter of 2017. “Our Africa Regional Centre is expected to open this quarter and I assure President Zuma that it will work with the objectives he articulated. We are targeting lending of about 2-point-5 billion US dollars for the next year.  Providing local currency financing minimises currency risk for our members,” says President of the BRICS New Development Bank Kundapur Kamath.

All the BRICS leaders are in full support of the bank, looking at it as a reliable tool to strengthen business opportunities, build investments and promote innovation and growth.

-SABC News