MIDEM has announced that South Africa will be the country of honor at the 2010 edition of the international music market and conference in Cannes.

The focus on South African will be organized in partnership with the South African Department of Arts and Culture.

The South African music industry will be highlighted throughout MIDEM, held Jan. 24-27 in Cannes, with the digital music conference MidemNet starting on Jan. 23.

Acts from the country will perform at the opening showcase party, co-hosted by South Africa. The country's delegation is set to grow "significantly," according to a statement, and an enlarged SA pavilion will stage various events in the exhibition hall.

Conference events focused on South Africa will bring together leading industry executives and officials, alongside matchmaking occasions organised between the South African delegation and other international pavilions to facilitate networking and business opportunities.

"Being country of honor at MIDEM 2010 will be a unique occasion for South Africa to promote its artists and industry to the international music community and to showcase some of our leading talent during the concerts," said Paul Mashatile, deputy minister of arts and culture, in a statement.

"We are delighted to have this opportunity to highlight the vibrant South African music industry and support the country's rich music culture at MIDEM 2010," added Dominique Leguern, MIDEM director.

It will be part of a year of events promoting South African culture worldwide, culminating in the country's hosting of the 2010 FIFA World Cup in June and July 2010.