His Excellency the Ambassador Dr. Hisham Alalawi met on 13 / 1 / 2012 with Mr. Rob Davis , Minister of Trade and Industry in South Africa at the Ministry of Trade and Industry in Pretoria .
The Ambassador discussed his activities and meetings with officials in South Africa since his arrival in April 2011 in addition to the agreement on the draft MOU on economic and technical cooperation for which South Africa is expected to host the Iraqi Trade Minister in the coming period in order to be signed with the Minister of Commerce and Industry . H.E. also spoke about the potential for developing relations with South Africa and he clarified that Iraq will have the largest budget in its history this year amounting to 100 Billion US Dollars and that a large portion will be allocated to finance investment projects and infrastructure projects. He also highlighted the economic and security improvement over the past four years and explained that Iraq is a country rich in natural resources especially oil and gas stressing the that the Iraqi government has embarked on a plan to increase export of oil during the next five years to 6 Million barrels per day, indicating Iraq's desire to provide part of South Africa's need for oil.
HE the Minister thanked HE the Ambassador for his continued efforts to strengthen relations between the two countries and expressed his government's desire in promoting the interests of the two countries leading to increased areas of cooperation between them following the limited collaboration to military cooperation and oil-for-food program during the period between 1990 And 2003.