Credit: SAREA 2022

Gqeberha, South Africa, 26 July 2022 – Export and import firms and trade promotion agencies from across Southern Africa were recognized at the second edition of the Southern Africa Regional Exporters Awards held on 26 July in Gqeberha, South Africa. The event, returning for the second year under the theme “Celebrating the export excellence of Southern African brands”, was live-streamed to audiences across the region and in the United States.

Awards were presented in four categories, with a particular focus on exporters. Lesotho’s Jalad Africa emerged the biggest winner of the night as Regional Exporter of the Year, ahead of the first and second runners-up Zambia Sugar Plc and South Africa’s Cape Classics Incorporated, respectively. These three firms were the Exporter of the Year in their respective countries.

(From left to right) Lesotho National Development Corporation (Capital Provider Of The Year), Moringa Initiative (Buyer Of The Year), Jalad Africa ( Exporter Of The Year), and Exporters Eastern Cape (Trade Promotion Service Provider Of The Year). Credit: SAREA 2022

The awards are part of a collaboration between the U.S. Government through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Eastern Cape Development Corporation. They seek to incentivize and encourage export firms from the nine participating countries of Angola, Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, and Zambia, to explore innovative ways of improving their regional and global competitiveness.

The awards, which focused on exports to the United States and South African markets, also made awards in three other business categories.

These were the categories of Buyer of the Year, won by Moringa Initiative, with Beck Trading (Pty) Ltd, and Cecil Vinegar Works in second and third place respectively, with all being South Africa-based firms. For Capital Provider of the Year, Lesotho National Development Corporation (LNDC), emerged as the overall winner, with Eswatini’s Fincorp and Lesotho’s PostBank in second and third place, respectively. In the final category of Trade Promotion Service Provider of the Year, South Africa’s Exporters Eastern Cape emerged as the overall winner, with the Botswana Investment and Trade Centre, and LNDC, in second and third place, respectively.

The nominations were adjudicated by a panel of industry leaders from across the region, representing both the private and public sectors, in the areas of sustainable export growth, competitive advantage, value and contribution to the exporting sector, future expansion plans, innovation, commitment to international business, and key positive steps the business has taken towards sustainable trade.

The event was attended by dignitaries from the government, the business sector, and the development community in attendance at the venue in Gqeberha, including the Eastern Cape Member of the Executive Committee for Economic Development, Environmental A‑airs and Tourism, Hon. Mlungisi Mvoko, Deputy Minister of the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition of South Africa, Nomalungelo Gina, and Executive Mayor of the Nelson Mandela Bay Metro, Cllr. Eugene Johnson.

The Consul General of the U.S. Consulate General in Cape Town, Todd P. Haskell led the U.S. Government delegation, while the Consul General of Namibia in Cape Town, Selma Nghinamundova, and the Consul General of Mozambique in Western Cape, Eastern Cape, and Northern Cape, Cristovao Gemo, were also in attendance.

Consul General Haskell lauded the winning firms and highlighted the U.S. Government’s continuing commitment to supporting the growth of the private sector across the region. He said, “The U.S. Government shares a vision with all our partners to promote the role of private sector led economic growth. Our new Economic Growth Policy under the Biden Administration advances the commitment of the broader U.S. Government to promote inclusive, sustained, and resilient economic growth in developing countries.”

The organizers and partners of the event are looking forward to the Southern Africa Regional Exporters Awards returning in a bigger and better form in 2023.

For more details about the awards, visit: