Russia’s Gazprombank and South Africa’s Public Investment Corporation (PIC) have signed a co-operation agreement, drawing the two countries closer together on areas of interest including trade and project finance.

Chief investment officer at PIC, South Africa’s public asset management company, Daniel Matjila, tells GTR the agreement will facilitate a “symbiotic relationship” between the two organisations, which will see “both entities co-invest and benefit equally”.

Initially, energy and renewable energy projects in South Africa and the surrounding Sub-Saharan region will mainly be supported by the agreement, says Matjila, whilst both companies work more closely on areas like project, leveraged and structured finance.

The companies will work more closely on areas like project, leveraged and structured finance.

Going forward, the co-operative relationship will look to address and expand on direct and indirect financing for projects in gas, oil, petrochemicals, mining and mining infrastructure, according to a statement from the PIC.

Provisions for research and information sharing, credit analysis, capacity building and the transfer of skills in these areas, are all provided for in the terms of the agreement.

“The PIC is a valuable partner for Gazprombank and our co-operation will explore new horizons for both companies,” says deputy chairman of the Russian state-owned lender’s management board, Alan Vaksam.

“Gazprombank has already started working with a number of projects of mutual interest to South African and Russian companies. We hope that signing this co-operation agreement gives us the opportunity to begin discussing co-financing some of these projects with the PIC.”