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Information & Advice

Trade Missions and International Events


Our programme of trade missions, trade fairs and knowledge events give clients the opportunity to connect with existing and new customers, access key decision makers, increase sales in international markets and exchange ideas. Click here for our Calendar of Events.

Trade Mission to South Africa, 26-29 May 2015

About the Trade Mission to South Africa

Enterprise Ireland’s trade mission to South Africa commences on Tuesday 26th May 2015 and will run for 4 days, taking in Johannesburg and Cape Town.

34 Irish companies are participating on the mission led by Charlie Flanagan T.D. Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade and accompanied by Julie Sinnamon, CEO, Enterprise Ireland.

Underlining the importance Ireland places on Southern Africa as a trade destination, Enterprise Ireland opened an office in Johannesburg in 2012.The mission has been co-ordinated by Fred Klinkenberg, Enterprise Ireland’s Country Manager, South Africa and his team in the market. In advance of the trade mission,  Fred Klinkenberg outlines its importance and how it will build on years of work by Enterprise Ireland to grow Irish exports to South Africa and the wider Sub-Sahara Africa region.

“As the Country Manager for South Africa, I have witnessed many positive changes in the economies of Sub-Sahara African countries since Enterprise Ireland opened an office in Johannesburg in 2012.

South Africa is the economic hub and gateway for access to Sub-Saharan Africa – a market of over 1.2bn people. Ireland’s exports to South Africa now exceed R15 billion, with an annual growth of around 20%.

Enterprise Ireland opened the office in Johannesburg primarily because of the marked economic growth in the Region and the growing  level of trade activity by our clients there. As part of Enterprise Ireland’s continued commitment to grow Irish exports to South Africa the EI office in Johannesburg was recently expanded with the appointment of two additional Market Advisors in 2014.

Supporting Enterprise Ireland’s “hub and spoke” approach to driving exports in other key economic growth areas in Sub-Sahara Africa, Enterprise Ireland opened a Trade Representative Office in Lagos  in 2014. This move is in recognition of the importance of the Nigerian market which is currently the largest economy in Africa.

Africa is transforming from a continent in need of assistance to a continent of opportunity. Sub-Sahara Africa is the 2nd fastest growing region in the world and home to 8 of the world’s 15 fastest growing economies. It currently has GDP growth of 5% and a population of 1.2Bn in 54 countries.

The objective of this Trade Mission is to build on the existing economic links with South Africa and, in a wider context, Sub Sahara Africa. A series of high level meetings will serve to bolster productive political and diplomatic relations necessary for moving forward on the various trade, investment and commercial agendas. It will reinforce the huge potential for innovative Irish companies in the fast growing Sub Sahara Region which will ultimately mean jobs in Ireland.

Ireland aims to be ‘Africa’s Partner in Europe’ and has a number of competitive attributes that are attractive to African businesses:

  • Competitive European source for high quality products and services.
  • Only English speaking Euro country in Europe.
  • Young and skilled workforce.
  • Substantial investment in R&D.
  • 2nd most open economy in the world.
  • 2nd largest exporter of software products.
  • 1st exporter of Pharmaceuticals in the world
  • Producer of 1/3 of all baby formula in the world
  • World class education system
  • Most entrepreneurial country in the world

If your company is interested in exporting to Sub-Sahara Africa please visit our South Africa page where you can read our useful country reports and learn more about the supports and services we offer.



Envelop iconFred Klinkenberg
Enterprise Ireland Country Manager, South Africa

Trade Mission to South Africa, 26-29 May 2015



Previous Trade Missions

Trade Mission to the Czech Republic and Poland, 18-21 May 2015
Trade Mission to the Gulf Region, 19-24 April 2015