Issue 330 | 1 June 2018
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President Cyril Ramaphosa on 25 May 2018 hosted the Diplomatic Corps in celebration of Africa Day 2018. South Africa celebrated Africa Day under the theme: “A Year of Nelson Mandela – Building a Better Africa and a Better World”.
The Africa Month and Africa Day present an opportunity to promote African unity, ensure deeper regional integration and recommit Africa to a common destiny.

In marking Africa Day, President Ramaphosa said the adoption of the Continental Free Trade Area showed the commitment by African leaders to follow in the footsteps of its forebears and unite in achieving the continent’s development goals.

“We are irrevocably committed to the realisation of the goals of Agenda 2063, Africa’s blueprint and vision for an integrated, prosperous and peaceful continent – the Africa we want.

“Pursuant to this objective, we recognise the adoption just two months ago of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) as an iconic milestone along our journey towards an eventual African Common Market, as envisioned in the 1991 Abuja Treaty Establishing the African Economic Community,” said the President.

He was speaking at a luncheon, where he hosted the Diplomatic Corps at the Presidential Guesthouse in Pretoria in celebration of Africa Day.

The President said the AfCFTA would enable Africa to significantly boost intra-Africa trade, improve economies of scale and establish an integrated market.

“It will also be a catalyst for industrial development, placing Africa on a path to exporting value-added products, improving Africa’s competitiveness both in its own markets and globally,” said the President.

Leveraging on a population of over one billion people, the AfCFTA is set to create a market of approximately US$2,6 trillion.

Insecurity on the continent

Reflecting on challenges still faced by the continent, the President called on his fellow African brothers and sisters to choose democracy through “the ballot instead of the bullet”.

“By the end of this year, 20 countries in Africa would have held presidential and parliamentary elections. This impressive number of countries choosing the ballot instead of the bullet to determine its leaders is a clear indication of political progress, and the deepening of democracy on the continent.

“We wish all the fraternal countries that will be holding elections this year, a peaceful, free and fair ballot that represents the will of the people,” said President Ramaphosa.

He said the spectre of conflict in Africa had declined dramatically, and most Africans were more secure than ever.

“The peace dividend experienced by a number of countries, previously stricken by conflict such as Côte d’Ivoire and Rwanda, has translated into unprecedented levels of economic growth for these countries.

“We, however, remain deeply concerned by the ongoing insecurity in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), in the Sahel region, including in Libya, Somalia and the ongoing conflict in South Sudan,” said the President.

Foreign policy

Responding to the President’s call for leaders on the continent to unite, the Dean of the Diplomatic Corps and DRC Ambassador Bene M’Poko said they stood ready to form strategic alliances.

“We believe through constructive dialogue with policymakers of this country, we can be your strategic partners not only in the design but also in the implementation of your foreign policy,” said M’Poko.

BRICS Summit

With South Africa gearing to assume Chairship of the Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) formation when it hosts the 10th BRICS Summit in July, President Ramaphosa assured the Diplomatic Corps that he would champion African interests.

“South Africa will continue to champion the interests of Africa within the BRICS formation and will, in this regard, convene an outreach session with African leaders.

“We believe this session will provide a platform for discussing ways and means of deepening cooperation with BRICS countries, including providing support for continental industrialisation and infrastructure development programmes,” he said.

– Source:
President Cyril Ramaphosa says as the continent prepares to celebrate Africa Day on 25 May, it should look to its forebears who championed African unity in their quest for the African Renaissance.
“It was our forebears, especially those who had early contacts with their Diaspora counterparts studying overseas, who exchanged ideas on how to confront colonial oppression.

“In the interconnected world of today where we as Africans assert ourselves as equals – not subjects – in the global governance system and the globalised economy, we are able to sustain the thinking and work pioneered by Pixley ka Seme.

“Our current task is to shape the progressive and prosperous Africa we wish to bequeath to future generations,” said the President.

He made these remarks as he delivered the Nelson Mandela Africa Day Centenary Lecture at The Inkosi Albert Luthuli International Convention Centre in Durban on Thursday, 24 May 2018.

This year’s Africa Day celebrations coincide with the centenaries of two notable Africans – Tata Nelson Mandela and Mama Albertina Sisulu.

The theme for Africa Month is "A Year of Nelson Mandela – Building a Better Africa and a Better World".

President Ramaphosa said as the continent looked to fulfil the hopes and dreams of its forefathers, it must do so with the realisation that it was a collective effort.

“The realisation of Madiba’s dream rests on leaders from all sectors of our society – leaders in government, business, labour, communities and civil society at large across the continent.

“In our own instance as South Africa, we are taking steps to transform an economy that remains largely characterised by the structural flaws of a racist and patriarchal past,” he said.

The President highlighted that it was collective efforts such as the Volvo Group of Southern Africa’s involvement in Youth Employment Service initiative that would see the country tackle unemployment and skills.

“Sensitive to the need for us to promote manual work in the midst of the unstoppable march of automation, Volvo continues to invest in providing skills to its energetic team of assembly workers,” said the President.

Economic growth initiatives

In March this year, the African Union Summit in Kigali, Rwanda, reached the historic milestone of an Agreement on the African Continental Free Trade Area.

“This agreement seeks to dissolve barriers to shared opportunity and prosperity by enabling the movement of people, goods, services and knowledge around our continent,” said President Ramaphosa.

In the case of South Africa, the President said the country looked to collectives such as the KZN Growth Coalition, the Durban Chamber of Commerce and the African Renaissance Trust to develop solutions and opportunities that would help overcome the lingering poverty, unemployment and inequality.

“We look to the collective leadership of this province to explore ways of giving effect to the new social compact around job creation that we are seeking to build among labour, business and communities nationally,” said the President.

In wrapping up the lecture, the President said greater regional integration, development of regional infrastructure, services and knowledge were key to the growth of the continent.

“Investors and innovators must feel at home in Africa. Our task is to create the conditions for this new generation to grow and thrive and to build a continent of hope and progress.

“It is then that we will achieve an African Renaissance,” said the President.

– Source:
The Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Lindiwe Sisulu, will next week host the second formal meeting of the BRICS Foreign Affairs Ministers.
The meeting will be held on 4 June in Pretoria in preparation for the 10th BRICS Summit taking place in July.

“It is expected that the ministers will discuss practical cooperation among the BRICS states, the current international political situation, as well as the role of BRICS in the implementation of the United Nations’ Agenda 2030,” the Department of International Relations and Cooperation said.

South Africa is scheduled to host the 10th BRICS Summit from 25 – 27 July at the Sandton Convention Centre, which will see South Africa building on the BRICS programme of development and prosperity for partner countries.

South Africa has proposed new areas of BRICS cooperation, which include a working group on peacekeeping, the establishment of a vaccine research centre, the establishment of the BRICS gender and women forum, the BRICS strategic partnership towards the advancement of the Fourth Industrial Revolution as well as the establishment of the BRICS Tourism Track of Cooperation.

The 2018 Summit will be an important milestone for BRICS cooperation, as it represents a decade of BRICS cooperation at the highest diplomatic level. The summit will culminate in the adoption of the Johannesburg Declaration, which will include BRICS’ commitments for the year ahead.

Already, there has been substantive progress achieved since South Africa joined BRICS in 2011, as seen in the launch of the Africa Regional Centre (ARC) of the New Development Bank (NDB) in South Africa.

The formation has strengthened its cooperative mechanism for institutional development, most notably witnessed in the creation of the NDB and the ARC in Johannesburg.

The five BRICS countries account for 26% of the world's landmass and are home to 43% of the world's population. The bloc is composed of emerging markets and the developing world.

– Source:
The Deputy Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Luwellyn Landers, is in Lome, Togo, for the 107th Session of the African, Caribbean and Pacific Group (ACP) Council of Ministers and the 43rd Session of the ACP-European Union (EU) Joint Council of Ministers, which ends on 1 June 2018.
The legal basis for relations between the ACP and the EU, the Cotonou Partnership Agreement (CPA), will expire on 29 February 2020. The CPA makes provision for Duty-Free, Quota-Free (DFQF) trade for ACP member states into the EU.

South Africa became a qualified member of the CPA between ACP member countries and the EU in November 1995, and consequently also became a member of the ACP Group through this action. The reason for qualified membership is that South Africa has never been a party to the trade chapter of the CPA. South Africa’s trade with the EU has taken place in accordance with the provisions of the bilateral Trade, Development and Cooperation Agreement (TDCA) between South Africa and the EU and more recently in accordance with the Southern African Development Community-EU Economic Partnership Agreement.

The decision to join the ACP Group was based on historical and political considerations and was a manifestation of South Africa's commitment to South-South solidarity and a desire to use this platform to advance the developmental interests of the Group and the broader South.

In preparation for 2020, the ACP has undertaken a process of reviewing its performance over the last 40 years and reflecting on how the ACP could restructure the organisation to respond to the current global environment and also developing its negotiating memoranda for a new successor framework agreement to the CPA.

Through ACP processes, all three regions, Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific, have embarked on regional/continental discussions aimed at formulating their positions in preparation for the negotiations on the finalisation of a successor agreement to the CPA.
Cabinet has condemned and further reiterated its stance against the acts of violent aggression carried out by Israeli armed forces along the Gaza border, which led to the deaths of a large number of civilians.
“Given the indiscriminate and grave manner of the latest Israeli attack, the South African Government made a decision to recall Ambassador Sisa Ngombane until further notice.

“Cabinet calls on the Israeli Defence Force to withdraw from the Gaza Strip and bring to an end the violent and destructive incursions into Palestinian territories,” said Communications Minister, Nomvula Mokonyane, on Thursday, 24 May 2018.

Minister Mokonyane was briefing the media on the outcomes of the Cabinet meeting held on Wednesday.

On 14 May, the South African Government announced the recall of its Ambassador to Israel with immediate effect following Israel's deadly attack on the Gaza Strip.

The recall of the Ambassador, as announced by the Department of International Relations and Cooperation, was in protest against the Israeli attack.

“Their routine actions present yet another obstacle to a permanent resolution to the conflict, which must come in the form of two states, Palestine and Israel, existing side-by-side and in peace,” she said.

Cabinet reiterated calls made by several member states of the United Nations for an independent inquiry into the killings, with a view to hold those responsible accountable.

– Source:
The Minister of Trade and Industry (dti), Rob Davies, said the focus on African innovation at this year’s edition of VivaTech was good for the continent and the country.
The Minister led a delegation of South African companies to the Viva Technology Conference and Exhibition (VivaTech), in France. The exhibition, which started on Thursday, 24 May 2018, was dedicated to innovation and digital transformation as well as focusing on start-ups.

Minister Davies led the delegation to the Paris conference that comprised for the first time up to 50 African start-ups from four key sectors gathered in a dedicated zone with local incubators and accelerators.

The dti, through the Export Marketing and Investment Assistance Scheme (EMIA), funded a group of start-ups which exhibited at the VivaTech, showcasing their products and services within the ICT space.

Two South African start-ups emerged victors at the summit. The Johannesburg-based artificial intelligence company, Vizibiliti Insight, won first place in the Verizon Challenge and has been invited to visit Verizon’s headquarters in New York.

Meanwhile, the Cape Town-based Sun Exchange won the AFD Energy Blockchain Challenge.

Minister Davies’ programme in Paris included bilateral meetings with the Secretary of State to the Minister of Economy and Finance, Delphine Geny-Stephann, and Jean Baptiste Lemoyne, Secretary of State to the Minister of Europe.

At the meeting with Geny-Stephann, they agreed that South Africa would host the Joint Economic Commission (JEC) later this year. The last South Africa-France JEC was held in France last year and it was co-chaired by Minister Davies and his French counterpart.

Minister Davies also addressed the French business confederation, Movement of the Enterprises of France International (MEDEF), to promote investments. MEDEF International is the largest organisation of the French private sector at an international level. Invest SA has a cooperation agreement with Business France that is intended to attract and facilitate French investments into South Africa.

Minister Davies mentioned that business confidence and investor sentiment were improving and government was responding to create a dynamic and enabling business environment and a better South Africa for all.

He mentioned that government was initiating measures to set the economy on a new path of growth, employment and transformation. Davies called on French companies to participate in the Youth Employment Service (YES) initiative.

“On 27 March 2018, we launched the Youth Employment Service initiative, also known as the YES initiative. The YES initiative aims to see more than one million youth offered work experience over three years. I would like to urge all companies with a presence in South Africa to get involved in the YES Initiative,” he said.

The exhibition concluded on Saturday.

– Source:
Nine Chinese companies have committed to invest over $10 billion in Limpopo’s Musina-Makhado Special Economic Zone (SEZ), said the Department of Trade and Industry (dti).
This as the Limpopo Economic Development Agency (LEDA) signed memoranda of understanding (MoUs) and a Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) with the Chinese companies at a ceremony in Beijing recently.

Group Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of LEDA, Ben Mphahlele, expressed his delight at the signing of the MoUs and MoA, adding that this would add to the growth of the provincial SEZ.

“We are delighted that the value of investment commitments in the Musina-Makhado SEZ continues to grow at an impressive rate. There are four projects in the SEZ, namely the power plant, coking plant, alloy factory and steel manufacturing. Today, we managed to confirm investment commitments in all of them,” said Mphahlele.

The brainchild of the dti, SEZs are geographically designated areas of a country that are set aside for specifically targeted economic activities.

LEDA said the SEZ was generating a significant amount of interest among potential investors.

The signing ceremony, said Mphahlele, would be followed by due diligence as technical representatives of the companies would visit the SEZ to do various assessments on the ground before implementing their plans.

“As we speak, there is a Chinese company that is conducting a feasibility study. We are looking forward to seeing the SEZ getting off the ground and beginning to change the economic landscape of Musina and Makhado by creating business and employment opportunities for the people of the Vhembe District.”

He described the development of the SEZ as a game changer and expressed confidence that the positive impact of the SEZ would extend to other parts of Limpopo and other African countries such as Zimbabwe and Mozambique.

South Africa currently has a total of eight SEZs namely: Coega and East London industrial development zones (IDZs) in the Eastern Cape; Dube TradePort and Richards Bay IDZs in KwaZulu-Natal; OR Tambo IDZ in Gauteng; Saldanha Bay IDZ in the Western Cape; Maluti-a-Phofung IDZ in the Free State; and Musina-Makhado SEZ in Limpopo.

– Source:
Mahindra has begun building bakkies in Durban as the Indian automotive giant rolls out an incremental growth strategy rather than trying to muscle into the African continent.
The first locally put-together Pik Up rolled off a new assembly line near the King Shaka International Airport recently as Mahindra announced plans to increase local content by value to 10% “very soon” and to 40% within about a year.

Company officials at the plant’s official launch on Friday, 25 May 2018, said reaching that target would qualify Mahindra to sell to southern and east African countries without attracting import duties.

Arvind Mathew, Chief of International Operations, said Mahindra regarded South Africa as a “second home” and a “base from which it could grow its market share on the continent”.

Mahindra has brought in a South African partner, consultancy firm Automotive Investment Holdings, to help establish and run the plant, capitalising on local knowledge.

It has invested R10 million in equipping the plant at the Dube Trade Port Special Economic Zone, and in training 25 workers, 80% of whom were previously unemployed.

Mahindra SA Chief Financial Oficer, Avinash Bapat, emphasised the investment was really about signalling to the local market that it was committed to operating in the country while giving impetus to its African ambitions.

– Source:
South Africa is participating in the 107th Session of the International Labour Conference (ILC).
The session, which is taking place in Geneva from 28 May to 8 June, will be attended by more than 4 000 workers, employers and government delegates from the International Labour Organisation' (ILO) 187 member states.

The Minister of Labour, Mildred Oliphant, is leading a South African delegation, which includes tripartite members of the National Economic Development and Labour Council (Nedlac).

“South Africa, as a member of the ILO, continues to play a leading role in ensuring the development of common regional positions, while also influencing the outcomes of deliberations within the organisation.

“The ILC is a forum where global decisions are made with regard to labour market developments,” the Labour Department said.

This year’s session is being held under the theme: “Building a Future with Decent Work”.

The ILC is the ILO’s highest decision-making body. It meets annually, bringing together tripartite delegations from the organisation’s member states and a number of observers from other international actors to consider a series of topics related to the world of work, placed on its agenda by the governing body of the ILO.

– Source:
On Friday, 25 May 2018, the Minister of Communications, Nomvula Mokonyane, addressed a gathering of public relations practitioners during the Africa Communications Week Conference in Cape Town.
The theme of the conference was: “Telling an Authentic and Balanced South African Narrative”.  This was a global event that looked at what worked and what was not working in the sector while also reflecting on the role of the Public Relations Practitioner in the development of the African narrative.
Since the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) Government announced the outbreak earlier this month, at least 26 people have died.
The National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) says a plan is in place following the outbreak of the Ebola virus in the DRC.

The NICD says the protocol for every disease with the potential to spread to South Africa is to ensure that the country is prepared for a possible outbreak.

This despite a report by the World Health Organisation (WHO), which found that the risk of Ebola spreading to South Africa or any country outside of the DRC currently remained low.

The NICD’s Kerrigan McCarthy says precautions have been made as part of the preparedness plan against the spread of Ebola.

“One of those is screening of people upon entering South Africa from international destinations, as well as increasing awareness among our healthcare workers.”

The NICD says it will be assisting the WHO in dealing with the Ebola outbreak investigation for now from South African shores.

– Source:
The African News Agency (ANA) recently signed a historic partnership with TV BRICS to promote cultural exchange, and to distribute African content among the people of the BRICS nations.
TV BRICS Chief Executive, Pavel Pautov, said that modern media, including social media, was being developed by revolutionary methods but all were formed on the quality content bases, which might be distributed in both traditional and new media.

“TV BRICS and ANA join their cooperative efforts in order to provide the quality television and digital product to their audiences in BRICS countries. We are thankful for this opportunity to establish a relationship with such a recognised media partner as ANA.”

The signing of the partnership came on the eve of South Africa hosting a series of BRICS events in July. These include the 10th BRICS Summit in Johannesburg and the BRICS Business Council and Third BRICS Film Festival in Durban.

Commenting on the partnership, Grant Fredericks, ANA Chief Executive, said that the ANA-TV BRICS partnership was part of a strategic alignment in terms of providing a broad base of viewpoints and further fostering important international exchange cooperation agreements.

The five areas of cooperation include joint content production, joint multimedia platforms, experience exchange and human resource training, joint festivals and competitions, and content and information exchange.

The total estimated population of BRICS countries is three billion, including nearly 1,5 billion Internet users, making this an important opportunity to communicate with this audience.

TV BRICS is an initiative proposed by Russian President Vladimir Putin, with the intended goal to form a common informational space among BRICS countries to speed up the processes of economic development and improve the welfare of people.

On the establishment of TV BRICS, Chairperson of the South African Chapter of the BRICS Business Council, Dr Iqbal Survé, said: "This is a significant initiative and an important step towards deepening political, economic and cultural cooperation among BRICS countries and of course, showing what is happening in these countries.”

The content TV BRICS is interested in includes culture, history, education, health, sport, economics and technology about and from BRICS countries. TV BRICS will be broadcast in Russian, Chinese, Portuguese and English. The official launch of the international network and public TV channel TV BRICS will take place in Russia as part of the 12th BRICS Summit in 2020.

– Source: African News Agency
Forty-six young South Africans are set to travel to the United States (US) to participate in the 2018 Mandela Washington Fellowship Programme for six weeks from 18 June to 2 August.
The fellowship aims to enhance leadership skills, bolster entrepreneurship and connect young leaders from across Africa with the American people, and with each another.

The 46 South Africans will join 700 other young people from sub-Saharan Africa for leadership training, networking and academic coursework, focused on civic leadership, public management, or business and entrepreneurship, which will be hosted by 28 US universities.

One hundred young people will stay for an additional six-week “Professional Development Experience” at a relevant company or organisation.

Speaking at a special reception held for the youngsters in Pretoria, Chargé d’Affaires Jessye Lapenn said: “The programme reflects Madiba’s optimism, idealism and belief in what he called the ‘endless heroism of youth’. The programme remains committed to those goals today. As we celebrate the Mandela Centenary, I hope you take this opportunity to ‘Be the Legacy."

Mandela Washington Fellows, aged 25 to 35, reflect the diversity of the African continent, with participants coming from a variety of backgrounds, professions, and regions.

Participants were selected for their record of promoting innovation and positive change within their organisations, communities and countries

– Source:
A new multimillion-rand telescope in the Karoo will offer astronomers an unprecedented view of the stars.
The MeerLICHT instrument in Sutherland will be specifically linked to the MeerKAT radio telescope array near Carnarvon in the Northern Cape.

Unlike its bigger brother SALT (Southern African Large Telescope), the MeerLICHT is meant to give astronomers a large field of view and match observations with the MeerKAT.

While SALT conducts spectroscopy – analysing light in different segments – MeerLICHT conducts all its investigations in the visible light spectrum.

MeerKAT conducts its investigations in the radio frequency spectrum, enabling scientists to examine the cosmos in greater detail than optical telescopes might allow.

"MeerKAT has a very large field of view and once MeerKAT starts science observations, we will be searching the entire field of view all the time for new transients," MeerLICHT principal investigator, Professor Patrick Woudt, told News24.

He said that the MeerLICHT might help astronomers understand the puzzling phenomenon of fast radio bursts (FRBs).

These appear suddenly and disappear within 100 milliseconds, making it difficult to examine them thoroughly.

"We don't really know what they are, other than that they must be very distant objects. As a rule, they only appear once (only one of them has been shown to repeat these bursts).

"By matching the optical camera's field of view to that of MeerKAT, we can instantly identify a counterpart in the optical to these FRBs, even if they occur by chance at the edge of our viewing window," said Woudt.

MeerLICHT is a completely robotic instrument and, at 110 million pixels, is the largest scientific CCD camera that can be made, said Woudt.

In a top-end smartphone, a 20-megapixel camera can produce a 2.45MB compressed image, and at 110 megapixels, a compressed image could come in at 22MB.

The uncompressed images from the MeerLICHT, however, come in at 350MB, include positional data and up to one million stars per image, making for superb study data.

The cost of the camera alone contributed 20% to the cost of the entire instrument.

The total cost for the instrument is €1million (about R14,55 million) and it will be permanently linked to the MeerKAT radio telescope.

"The telescope optics design needed special considerations to achieve the large field of view matching that of MeerKAT across a flat focal plane; this contributed to the cost," said Woudt.

The MeerLICHT will receive its pointing data fro m the MeerKAT and will be launched with partners from the United Kingdom and Netherlands.

– Source:
South Africa has drafted and tabled a proposal that aims to ensure that a fair, equitable and transparent system of the allocation of fishing opportunities is developed.
South Africa tabled the proposal at the 22nd Annual Session of the Indian Ocean Tuna Commission (IOTC) in Bangkok, Thailand.

The proposal is directed at vessel chartering in the IOTC area of competence, with the aim of supporting the long-term sustainability of IOTC species, while ensuring the special requirements of IOTC developing coastal states (DCS) and small island developing states (SIDS) are accommodated. This includes food security and development aspirations to promote opportunities for economic development and development aspirations.

The proposal, however, takes into account the sovereign rights of IOTC coastal states, in accordance with the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. The IOTC is responsible for the management of tuna and tuna like-species in the Indian Ocean.

The South African delegation to the IOTC -- led by Deputy Director-General of the department’s branch: Fisheries Management, Siphokazi Ndudane – championed a newly adopted resolution on vessel chartering at the IOTC meeting.

This is only the third time that the country participates as a full member of the IOTC. South Africa was for a very long time a non-cooperating contracting party member of the IOTC until 3 September 2015, when the South African Parliament approved its accession to the IOTC, thus becoming a cooperating contracting party member of the IOTC.

The Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries noted that the country was quickly making a positive mark with respect to promoting the recognition of the rights and interests of DCS.

“South Africa is playing a pivotal role in leading, along with other DCS and SIDS, such as the Maldives and other members of the group of like-minded coastal states in the Indian Ocean, known as the G16. South Africa is regarded as a leading light and a role model for other developing nations in the Indian Ocean,” the department said.

“The proposal aimed to provide clear guidelines on the management of vessel chartering, as well as the attribution of catch and observer coverage. Currently, IOTC attributes all the catch and observer data accrued from vessel chartering to the flag State of the chartered foreign fishing vessel.

“Consequently, this practice, under the current conditions, denies the coastal states, particularly the DCS, their rights to have a historical catch data in the IOTC Area of Competence,” the department said.

The IOTC is currently developing a system of allocation of fishing rights in the IOTC area of competence, and historical catch data is one of the critical elements to be considered for the allocation of fishing rights.

“The proposal on vessel chartering had huge implications not only for South Africa but for other Indian Ocean coastal states and to some degree, the distant fishing water nations operating in the Indian Ocean."

South Africa’s tuna allocations at the Commission for the Conservation of Southern Bluefin Tuna and the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas has significantly increased, creating much-needed permanent jobs in the South African fishing industry.

– Source:
South Africa has done it again! For the 36th time South Africa has won Gold at the prestigious Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) Chelsea Flower Show in London, United Kingdom.
That’s 36 times in the 43 years that South Africa has exhibited at the international flower show.

Leon Kluge, SANBI’s new designer, is overjoyed: “It was an experience compared to none representing South Africa at the world’s most prestigious flower show, the Chelsea Flower Show. Winning an award is an added bonus. My team and I hope that we made South Africa proud and that we convinced many, many people here in Europe to visit our magnificent diverse country.”

SANBI Board Chairperson Nana Magomola and CEO Dr Moshibudi Rampedi, praised the team for the superb work they had done in presenting South Africa’s unique biodiversity to the world.

“Once again SANBI – Kirstenbosch has done South Africa proud,” said Nana Magomola. Our 36th gold medal in 43 years of participating at the Royal Horticultural Society Chelsea Flower Show! Greater thanks to our new designers, Leon Kluge and Chris Randlehoff, and our volunteers who worked hard to make the exhibit a success. From SANBI, Mpendulo Gabayi of Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden and Ricardo Riddles of the Karoo Desert National Botanical Garden , thank you for your contribution to this year’s exhibit. Well done, you stand on the shoulders of giants who came before you.”

"Our team has presented many facets of the beauty and diversity of South Africa’s floral kingdom and cultures,” Dr Rampedi said.

– Source:
Mount Camdeboo in the Eastern Cape has recently introduced elephant to its reserve, with plans to add lion later in the year, thereby expanding its long-term conservation vision.
The 14 000-ha reserve will now become home to the famed “Big Five” as rhino, Cape buffalo and leopard are already present on the property.

These species all historically occurred in the Great Karoo region and form part of the reserve’s long-term plan to reintroduce historically occurring species in the area.

“We are thrilled to welcome back these majestic creatures to Mount Camdeboo, which will undoubtedly add great value to our safari experience” says owner Iain Buchanan.

The reserve says records show that elephant have always been indigenous to the area, being an animal that can live in habitats ranging from deserts to forests, as long as there is clean fresh drinking water and shade.

"We are delighted that Mount Camdeboo meets all their habitat requirements and are confident that they will thrive in the reserve.”

The reserve was first created in 1995, when the late Logie Buchanan purchased several properties making up the current 14 000-ha Mount Camdeboo private game reserve.

The recent approval by the Department of Environmental Affairs of the region’s Mountain Zebra-Camdeboo Protected Environment’s proposed management plan, which will see approximately 286 343 hectares of both private and public land in the Great Karoo protected and preserved for generations to come, has been a stamp of approval for the region’s land conservation cap.

Mount Camdeboo Private Game Reserve has played a pivotal role in this initiative, being the first property to sign into the Protected Environment in 2012.

Mount Camdeboo Private Game Reserve lies just to the east of the town of Graaff-Reinet, in the heart of the malaria-free Eastern Cape's Great Karoo area

– Source: Traveller24
South African film-makers have returned from the world-famous Cannes Film Festival in France, with smiles on their faces and freshly signed sales deals in their pockets. It was a year, they told "City Press", where black films and women’s films stole the spotlight.
The big news was about two films with a strong South African presence, Rafiki and The Harvesters – both in competition and both co-productions with other countries.

It took Kenyan film-maker Wanuri Kahiu seven years to raise the funds for Rafiki, Africa’s first feature-length lesbian love story, which was co-produced by South Africa’s Steven Markovitz, fresh off his success with the documentary, Winnie.

And it was worth the wait.

Rafiki had an incredible reception and received a standing ovation for about 10 minutes,” Markovitz said.

Kahiu had to fit in more than 100 interviews with international media.

Rafiki is a co-production between South Africa, Kenya, France and Germany, and at Cannes it was sold to the United States, Canada, France, Germany, Holland, Belgium and Switzerland.

Lwazi Manzi was known as an emergency room doctor in a hospital – that is until she got bitten by the film bug. Today, she divides her time between the intensive care unit and Spier Films, and the Cannes red carpet. She co-produced The Harvesters, which was screened to a full theatre and won critical praise, most notably from the all-important film industry magazine Hollywood Reporter.

A co-production between South Africa, Greece, Poland and France, the film plays out in a white, conservative, patriarchal rural community. A teenage Janno does not fit in and is emotionally frail. One day, his fiercely religious mother brings home Pieter, a hardened orphan she hopes to save. This sets into motion a terrible power struggle between the boys.

The Harvesters also received a standing ovation at Cannes, and had signed distribution deals even before arriving in the upmarket resort town on the French Riviera. Manzi, who has two more international co-productions in the pipeline, was invited to speak at an event at the festival and was blown away by this year’s feminist activism spearheaded by Cate Blanchett, who led a barefoot march against male control of the industry.

“The representation of Africa in film is grossly disproportionate considering the African population in the world,” she told City Press.

“The onus is on us to demand inclusion in the international film industry.”

– Source:
Siya Kolisi will lead the Springboks against England in the forthcoming three-Test series, while Pieter-Steph du Toit has been entrusted with the captaincy for Saturday’s historic Test in Washington against Wales.
Rassie Erasmus, the SA Rugby Director of Rugby, confirmed the two appointments at a media conference at the team hotel in Johannesburg.

Erasmus, who took over the coaching reins of the Springboks after his appointment in April, also confirmed the Springboks’ 26-man travelling squad for the Welsh encounter in Washington.

The squad members not involved in the Welsh match will stay behind in Johannesburg to continue with their preparations for the coming international season.

Erasmus congratulated Kolisi and Du Toit on their respective appointments. Both men will captain the Springboks for the first time.

“It’s a huge honour to captain the Springboks and Siya and Pieter-Steph are two honest, hardworking men who enjoy the respect of their fellow players,” said Erasmus.

“I believe both of them will do a good job as captains. My philosophy is that each player must take responsibility for his position and must therefore work extremely hard with that one goal in mind – to make the Springboks successful again,” added Erasmus.

Born in Zwide township near Port Elizabeth, loose forward Kolisi is also the Stormers captain and has played in 28 Tests since making his debut at age 22 against Scotland in Nelspruit on 15 June, 2013. He has four Test tries to his name.

Du Toit made his debut as a 21-year-old on 9 November, 2013 against Wales in Cardiff. He is equally at home as lock and as loose forward and has played in 32 Test for the Springboks, 21 as lock, 10 times as flank and once as No 8.
South Africa’s Olympic and world champion Caster Semenya ran the fastest women’s 800 metres of the year at the Prefontaine Classic Diamond League meeting on Saturday, 26 May 2018.
Semenya clocked one minute 55.92 seconds in a dominant performance as she ran the fastest 800m on American soil.

She has not lost an 800-m race since 2015.

After signing autographs and taking a victory lap to cheers from the sell-out crowd, she said that some day she might like to run a marathon.

“When you live, you gain experience, I’m more mature. I’ve learned about everything, especially in sports,” she added. “I just want to inspire people, and inspire the youth, to show them that if you believe, anything was possible.”

The triple world champion also said breaking the 800-m world record of 1:53.28 set by Czechoslovakia’s Jamila Kratochvilova in 1983 was on her to-do list.

“That is the plan. Now it is not about running hard, it is running smart,” said the 27-year-old South African, who has a best of 1:55.16. She also quashed any suggestions she could retire soon.

– Source:
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Editor: Delien Burger
Picture Editor: Yolande Snyman
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