South African Deputy President Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka said in Cape Town on Thursday that South Africa welcomes investment and skills from China.
The deputy president highlighted South Africa as an affordable energy-producing country and a "favorite destination for investment that is energy intensive."
She made a key note speech at a China-South Africa business cooperation forum in Cape Town, which were attended by more than 800 Chinese and South African business people.
South Africa currently had more investments in China than the other way round, "something we must really fix", Mlambo-Ngcuka said.
China's Minister of Commerce Bo Xilai said representatives of 75 of the 79 companies that accompanied Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao on his two-day visit to South Africa have identified "definite cooperation interests."
The South African deputy president said that the government welcomed an agreement struck on textile trade, describing it as a unique deal proving that China was "willing to walk the extra mile."
She noted that the local clothing and textile industry had experienced decline in recent years.
"We hope through our cooperation we can save some of the jobs and part of the industry," she added.
Mlambo-Ngcuka said South Africa's foreign relations were based on non-interference with other countries' internal affairs.
She called for good political ties between South Africa and China to be used as a basis for growing economic exchanges.
(Xinhua News Agency June 23, 2006)