JOHANNESBURG, March 11 (Xinhua) -- The South African government is optimistic that the proposed BRICS development bank will be based in Africa, an official said on Monday.
South Africa's Minister of International Relations and Co- operation Maite Nkoana-Mashabane said she is canvassing the support of President Zuma to make sure the bank is based in South Africa.
The 5th BRICS Summit is scheduled to be held in the South African port city of Durban later this month under the theme "BRICS and Africa: Partnership for Development, Integration and Industrialization."
She said it will be ideal if South Africa is given the opportunity to have the development bank.
It was reported that when President Jacob Zuma attended the BRICS summit in India in March last year, his mission there was to "bring home a bank."
"It's high time we get the bank here for the benefit of Africa as a whole," an official in the South African cabinet said on condition of anonymity.
"South Africa has very sound financial expertise that will stand the test of time," the official said. "We are situated on a continent where seven of the 10 fastest growing economies in the world are situated."
According to the minister the bank is expected to assist Africa in infrastructure projects.
Business Unity SA (Busa) CEO Nomaxabiso Majokweni told Xinhua on Monday that the development bank planned by BRICS member states would promote growth and investment in its member states and other emerging markets and would be a strong voice in the lobbying for the reform of international financial institutions.
"An immediate benefit for South Africa will be a massive injection in our infrastructure development plan, which could help government to meet some of its very ambitious growth targets," Majokweni said.
"South Africa has the ability to double its trade with other BRICS memberships to 500 billion U.S. dollars by 2015, but only if barriers to trade and investment within the bloc are addressed by business and government," said the CEO.