China has pledeged $50-billion towards industrialisation projects in South Africa and the rest of the African continent, according to the Department of Trade and Industry (dti).

In a statement on Tuesday, the dti said the pledge was announced during a courtesy visit by the vice-minister of commerce of China, Zhang Xiangchen, to the director-general of the dti, Lionel October, in Pretoria on Monday.

The courtesy visit by Xiangchen also focused on the upcoming Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) that will be hosted in Johannesburg from 4 to 5 December 2015.

Xiangchen says there were several new measures that the Chinese government is finalising to further promote industrialisation and development of the African continent as a whole.

“China-Africa industrialisation partnerships will be at the forefront of any development in the continent followed by agricultural activities. China will also increase investments in Africa especially in the Special Economic Zones and provide training in those sectors,” says Xiangchen.

Xiangchen adds that his government will provide 50 technical experts in building and upgrading of industrial parks, building of new power plants, 40 000 training opportunities in different sectors and 200 000 industrial managers to train and develop local industrial managers.