A team of specialist from the United States will visit South Africa’s local defence companies in March to understand its capabilities.
According to the Aerospace, Maritime and Defence (AMD) Industries Association of South Africa, the visit which was supposed to take place between 9 and 13 March 2020 has been put on hold due to the COVID-19 Coronavirus.
This familiarization visit by the U.S. DOD precedes a November 2019 meeting between the South African Department of Defence and the US military.
“Part of the deliberations between the two countries centred on the need for the South African Defence Industry to take or make use of opportunities that the US Defence Force procurement process avail. It was noted that not many South African Defence Industry (SADI) companies are part of the supply chain of the US Armed Forces. This is despite the fact that the US has one of the largest standing armies in the world,” the SA AMD Export Council (SAAMDEC) said.
“The US Armed Forces further expressed their desire for SADI to explore and exploit opportunities that their procurement process provide. Furthermore, there was a realisation that SADI has much to offer that the US can benefit from or make use of.
“To remedy this anomaly, it was then decided that during the first quarter of 2020 the US Armed Forces will despatch a team to come and interact with a select group of SADI companies with the intention of understanding the capabilities that exist in RSA. Companies that will be found to have niche technologies will then be integrated into the USDF procurement process – with potential of lending contracts from the US Defence Force or collaboration/partnerships in Research & Development”.