Issue 343 | 30 August 2018
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President Cyril Ramaphosa on Tuesday, 28 August 2018, hosted Prime Minister Theresa May of the United Kingdom (UK) of Great Britain and Northern Ireland on a Working Visit to South Africa.
The Working Visit followed bilateral meetings between President Ramaphosa and Prime Minister May during the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in London from 19 to 20 April 2018 and at the G7 in Canada from 8 to 9 June 2018.

During the bilateral engagements, the two leaders discussed potential partnerships between the UK and South Africa and efforts to strengthen bilateral trade and investment relations.

The Working Visit by Prime Minister May sought to further cement economic relations built up over several decades.

The last official visit to South Africa by a sitting UK Prime Minister was in 2011.

Bilateral relations between South Africa and the UK are strong, covering a range of areas of cooperation linked to both governments’ priorities.

These relations are managed through a Bilateral Forum at Ministerial level, which meets biennially.

The UK was South Africa’s sixth-largest global trading partner in 2017, with total trade at R79,5 billion. The UK also remains the key source of long-haul tourism to South Africa, with nearly 448 000 visitors in 2017.

During the visit, Prime Minister May also presented President Ramaphosa with the SS Mendi Bell, which was found in the English Channel a year ago.

In 1917, the SS Mendi suffered disaster in what has been described as one of the 20th century's worst maritime disasters in UK waters. On 21 February 1917, a large cargo steamship, Darro, collided with the Mendi in the English Channel, south of the Isle of Wight. The Mendi sank, killing 646 people, most of whom were black South African troops.

The Mendi was chartered by the British Government as a troop carrier to serve in World War 1, carrying 823 members of South Africa’s Fifth Batallion. They had completed 34 days of the voyage from Cape Town to England, and were on their way to France to the war when tragedy struck in the English Channel.

In 2017, the South African Government commemorated the centenary of the sinking of SS Mendi, which resulted in the loss of over 800 lives who were mainly South Africans.

The handing over of the SS Mendi Bell to the people of South Africa is a mark of respect for the shared history and bilateral friendship between the two countries.
President Cyril Ramaphosa on Sunday, 26 August 2018, attended the inauguration of President-Elect Emmerson Mnangagwa as President of the Republic of Zimbabwe.
President Ramaphosa was accompanied by Lindiwe Sisulu, Minister of International Relations and Cooperation.

Earlier, President Ramaphosa urged Zimbabwean leaders to accept the country’s Constitutional Court ruling, which reaffirmed Emmerson Mnangagwa’s victory as the duly elected President.

“The South African Government urges all those involved in the court case, in particular the applicants and the respondents, to accept the decision of the court. It is important, going forward that all parties work towards lasting peace, unity and prosperity in Zimbabwe,” said the Presidency in a statement.

Following the judgment, President Ramaphosa congratulated President Mnangagwa, the winner of the elections as confirmed by the country’s apex court.

President Ramaphosa’s spokesperson, Khusela Diko, said the President had recommitted South Africa's readiness to work with the Government of Zimbabwe in the pursuit of closer political, cultural, economic and trade ties for the mutual benefit of the peoples of South Africa and Zimbabwe.
The Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Lindiwe Sisulu, on 29 August 2018 received her counterpart, Abdelkader Messahel, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Democratic Republic of Algeria on a Working Visit to South Africa.
South Africa and Algeria enjoy good political relations dating back when Algeria hosted South African liberation movements and provided active support to freedom fighters, including the founding father of a democratic South Africa, former President Nelson Mandela. This resulted in the creation of a structured framework of cooperation in the form of a Ministerial Joint Bi-National Commission of Cooperation in 1998. The latter was later upgraded to a Bi-National Commission at Presidential level in 2000, signifying the strategic quality of the bilateral relations that exist between the two countries.

Over the years, there have been high-level visits and engagements between South Africa and Algeria and constant consultations on issues of mutual interests, particularly on continental integration.

The depth and extent of strong cooperation between the two countries are evidenced by the existence of 33 agreements and memoranda of understanding covering a wide range of sectors.

The two ministers reviewed bilateral cooperation between the two countries and exchanged views on issues of common interest. The ministers also reflected on the role the two countries continue to play within the African Union and its structures.
The Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Lindiwe Sisulu, has expressed concern about the high number of South Africans detained abroad on a variety of charges, predominantly drug-related, following the death sentence handed down to a South African citizen in Vietnam.
The male South African, whose details are known to the Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO), was sentenced to death in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, on 28 August 2018.

The man was arrested and charged with drug smuggling in 2016. An official from the South African Mission in Vietnam was in court when the sentence was handed down.

The family of the man has been informed of the latest developments, and the department is rendering consular support to them.

DIRCO will continue to monitor the case and will take the lead from the concerned citizen with regard to the possibility of appealing the sentence.

There are currently 800 South Africans doing time in foreign jails. DIRCO once again calls on South Africans travelling abroad to familiarise themselves with the legal and cultural practices of the countries they are visiting. South Africans are warned against taking part in any unlawful activities.
The Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Lindiwe Sisulu, on Monday, 27 August 2018, held a monthly media lunch with members of the press as per her commitment during the 2018 Budget Vote Speech.
Minister Sisulu, among other things, briefed the press on the outcomes of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Summit, recently held in Namibia, and also updated the media on the upcoming international engagements, which include the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation in Beijing, the Third Indian Ocean Conference in Vietnam and Sub-Saharan High-Level Ministerial Exchange in Singapore.

South Africa recently attended the 38th Ordinary Summit of the Heads of State and Government of SADC in which President Cyril Ramaphosa handed over as the Chair of SADC to Dr Hage Geingob President of the Republic of Namibia.
The Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Lindiwe Sisulu, who is also the Chancellor of the Mangosuthu University of Technology (MUT) has commended the institution for honouring the late Zolile Khumalo by completing phase 1 of the on-campus student residence.
The 21-year-old Zolile Khumalo’s life was cut short early this year at one of the off-campus student residences.

“We regret that the Khumalos' daughter lost her beautiful life in our hands. We are here to make sure that our children live in security and comfort and never again shall we lose a hair of any woman in this institution. MUT should be commended for completing phase 1 of the new student residence. This will go a long way in ensuring that students live in a safe and secure environment," said Minister Sisulu.

“We are going to use the rest of this month speaking against violence against women. It is the most unacceptable way in which society should live,” added Sisulu.

The Minister was speaking on the margins of the inauguration of the new MUT Vice Chancellor and Principal, Dr Enoch Malaza.

The MUT community also used the official opening of the student residence to launch the fountain in honour of the late Zolile as the country commemorates Women’s Month.

The inauguration of Dr Malaza and official opening of the student residence was attended by the Minister of Higher Education and Training, Dr Naledi Pandor, Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi, who is one of the founding fathers of the Institution, vice chancellors from other institutions and Zolile Khumalo’s family.
The Deputy Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Luwellyn Landers, participated in the Third Indian Ocean Conference from 27 to 28 August 2018, in Hanoi, Vietnam.
The conference under the theme: “Building Regional Architecture”, was organised by the India Foundation, in association with its partners, the Diplomatic Academy of Vietnam, the S Rajaratnam School of International Studies of Singapore and the Bangladesh Institute of International and Strategic Studies.

South Africa, as the current Chair of the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA), encompasses the view that the Indian Ocean region should be characterised as a region of peace, stability and development within which to pursue the goal of promoting socio-economic cooperation for the well-being and development of the countries and peoples of the Indian Ocean Rim.

The theme adopted for South Africa’s tenure as Chair from 2017 to 2019 is: “IORA – Uniting the Peoples of Africa, Asia, Australasia and the Middle East through Enhanced Cooperation for Peace, Stability and Sustainable Development.”

The Deputy Minister further highlighted the contribution by former President Nelson Mandela as the founding father of IORA in the year that we are celebrating his centenary. Bilateral trade relations between South Africa and Vietnam have been growing year-on-year. South Africa’s trade with Vietnam in 2017 amounted to R16,8 billion.
The Deputy Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Reginah Mhaule, represented South Africa at the Singapore-Sub-Saharan High-Level Ministerial Exchange from 27 and 28 August 2018 in Singapore.
While in Singapore, Deputy Minister Mhaule also participated in the Africa-Singapore Business Forum (ASBF), taking place on 28 and 29 August 2018. This biannual gathering was first launched in 2010. The ASBF is the premier platform for business exchange and fostering trade and investment between Africa and Asia.
As an integral part of its policy of promoting the overseas growth for Singapore-based companies and international trade, the Singaporean Government is also focusing on Africa as a source of new markets through initiatives such as the ASBF and the Sub-Saharan High-Level Ministerial Exchange.

South Africa and Singapore established diplomatic relations in 1992. South Africa’s bilateral relations with Singapore are warm, marked by, among other things, an exchange of high-level visits. Then Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa visited Singapore in 2016, followed by a reciprocal working visit by Tharman Shanmugaratnam, Deputy Prime Minister and Coordinating Minister for Economic and Social Policies, in 2017.

The current bilateral mechanism that allows the two countries to optimise existing cooperation is the South Africa-Singapore Foreign Office Consultations (FOC), which takes place annually. Singapore hosted the Fourth FOC in 2017 and in 2018 South Africa will host the Fifth FOC.
The Embassy of the United States of America (USA) in Pretoria was called in on 23 August 2018, as directed by the Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Lindiwe Sisulu, to convey the unhappiness of the people and the Government of South Africa following a tweet by President Donald Trump based on false information and lobbying by certain South African lobby groups that seek to derail and frustrate the land redistribution programme.
The US Chargé d'Affaires was informed to convey to Washington that Pretoria was disappointed about Washington's failure to use available diplomatic channels.

The Department of International Reltions and Cooperation also urged the Chargé d'Affaires to indicate to Washington that the people of South Africa, of all races, were working together through Parliament and other legal platforms to find a solution to this historic challenge and that President Trump's tweet served only to polarise debate on this sensitive and crucial matter.

At the end of the meeting, the Chargé d'Affaires committed to convey the Minister's message to Washington immediately.

The Government of South Africa wishes to reiterate the following:
  • That it is following a consultative process in addressing the issue of land and agrarian reform and that it will not allow land grabs and anarchy in the process of finding a solution to the land issue. In this regard, President Cyril Ramaphosa has directly addressed investors and agricultural associations and will continue this process of engagement and consultation with all stakeholders to find solutions that are in the best interest of the country, the economy and the people of South Africa.
  • President Ramaphosa has also consistently indicated that this process will be undertaken within the confines of the Constitution and in a manner that grows the economy ensures food security and increases agricultural production. He has also, in Parliament, underlined that the Government would not support calls for the nationalisation of land.
  • The Government’s policy and approach to land reform has furthermore also been clarified in remarks that have been made by Deputy President David Mabuza at a Land Summit held on 23 August 2018.
The Government of South Africa wishes to caution against alarmist, false, inaccurate and misinformed, as well as – in some cases – politically-motivated statements that do not reflect the policies and intentions of the South African Government.

The Minister has taken note of the statement that was provided by the US Department of State following earlier diplomatic engagements indicating, among others, that the difficult issue of land reform is being undertaken through an open process, including public hearings, broad-based consultations and active civil-society engagement.
The conference was held in partnership with the Department of International Relations and Corporations and took place from 23 to 24 August 2018 at the Nelson Mandela University, Port Elizabeth. The event formed part of the calendar of events for South Africa's Chairship of BRICS in 2018.
The Minister of Small Business Development, Lindiwe Zulu, on 23 August 2018 deliver a keynote address at the opening of the Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) Conference on Development Finance, which was hosted by the BRICS Research Centre of the Human Sciences Research Council and the Nelson Mandela University.

The conference focused specifically on the importance of development finance institutions such as the Africa Regional Centre of the New Development Bank for BRICS economic partnerships in Africa.
Participants at the indaba included relevant national government departments, Chapter 9 institutions, trade unions, civil society organisations, business and a select group of international guests.
The Department of International Relations and Cooperation, working jointly with ActionAid South Africa and supported by Lawyers for Human Rights and the Centre for Applied Legal Studies, recently held an indaba and community visit aimed at soliciting views about South Africa’s role as co‐sponsor of the proposed Legally Binding Instrument to Regulate the Activities of Transnational Corporations and other Business Enterprises with respect to Human Rights.

At its June 2014 session, the United Nations Human Rights Council adopted Resolution 26/9, by which it decided to establish an open-ended intergovernmental working group on transnational corporations and other business enterprises with respect to human rights, whose mandate would be to elaborate an international legally binding instrument to regulate, in international human rights law, the activities of transnational corporations and other business enterprises.
A panel led by Environmental Affairs Minister, Edna Molewa, recently discussed climate change during a South African Talanoa Dialogue at the Midrand Conference Centre in Gauteng.
Marcus Cornaro, European Union Ambassador to South Africa, opened the plenary with former French chief negotiator for the Paris Agreement, Laurence Tubiana.

Minister Molewa delivered the keynote address.

State parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, including South Africa, in 2015 adopted the landmark Paris Agreement in an effort to guide and accelerate the international community’s response to climate change.

“In terms of the Paris Agreement, parties have submitted Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) indicating their individual contributions to the global effort and have also agreed to multilateral processes to assess and advance collective efforts to achieve the Paris Agreement’s global goals on mitigation, adaptation and financial pathways towards the transition to a low-emissions and climate-resilient future,” the Department of Environmental Affairs said in a statement.

The Talanoa Dialogue, previously known as the 2018 Facilitative Dialogue, is the first of these key multilateral stock-taking events and discussions on the collective effort. It seeks to inform the preparation or updating of NDCs in 2020. The dialogue is premised on three overarching questions: Where are we? Where do we want to go? How do we get there?

The South African Talanoa Dialogue, which got underway on 23 August, was a platform for all stakeholders to share stories, aspirations and ideas of how South Africa’s climate change response could foster its development aspirations.

"Talanoa" is a traditional word used in Fiji and across the Pacific to reflect a process of inclusive, participatory and transparent dialogue.

– Source:
Local companies are seeking new markets in Mozambique while participating in the 54th Feira International de Maputo (FACIM).
Tshwane-based food and beverage company, Khora Africa Projects Co-operative Limited, aims to establish a new market and potential distribution channels in the East African nation.

Director at the company that produces fruit jam, chutney, chilli sauce and atchar, Thadishe Phoku, said the FACIM presented an enormous opportunity for the company.

“This is an enormous opportunity for us emerging exporters, if our humble beginning from a home and kitchen setup in 2002 until 2013, when we were struggling for financial backing, is anything to go by. Today, we are lauding the Department of Trade and Industry (dti) for inspiring confidence through their incentive schemes,” said Phoku.

The company is part of the 23 local companies assisted by the dti to participate in the trade fair.

The dti, through the Export Marketing and Investment Scheme, offers financial and non-financial support to small, medium and micro-sized enterprises to access global markets.

FACIM, ranks as the biggest trade show in Mozambique, is held in the capital Maputo. The popular annual trade fair, which caters for a variety of products and services attracts the attention of companies from the world over.

In 2017, FACIM hosted 1940 exhibitors, 1 400 national and 540 international companies from 20 countries and was visited by 80 000 people.

The trade fair is running from 27 August to 3 September 2018.

– Source:
A R5-million boost to the Graskop Gorge Lift Company in Mpumalanga by the Tourism Transformation Fund will jumpstart more development in the popular Panorama Route.
“We are proud to announce that this project will receive R5-million funding for its next development phase through the Tourism Transformation Fund of the Department of Tourism,” said Tourism Minister, Derek Hanekom.

The Minister announced the funding of the next development phase of the company recently.

The R5-million investment, is a shave off the R120-million Tourism Transformation Fund, established by the Tourism Department to support black investors and communities to develop and expand tourism-related projects.

“The Graskop Gorge Lift Centre will work as a node to stimulate further development in the Panorama Route. This project therefore fits in neatly with the department’s destination development plans which focuses on precincts and nodes development. By clustering several attractions together, they can feed off each other and grow together to make South Africa a more competitive destination,” said Minister Hanekom.

Along with the Graskop Gorge Lift Company, Tala Collections Private Game Reserve in KwaZulu-Natal will receive R3,6-million funding.

The Minister also announced that the application window of the Tourism Transformation Fund had been extended to 30 November 2018.

The fund is administered by the National Empowerment Fund (NEF) on behalf of the Department of Tourism. It aims to reduce funding gaps between the investor’s own contribution and the approved loan/equity contribution by the NEF.

Funding is capped at a maximum of R5 million for each successful applicant.

Applicants are encouraged to submit their application forms and supporting documents directly to the NEF, who will comb through applications for their commercial viability.

Information, application forms and guidelines are obtainable on the NEF website at and enquiries can be directed to

– Source:
Buying locally-made products and services not only creates jobs but also changes the face of the economy, says entrepreneur Sihle Magubane.
The coffee originator, roaster and barista, Magubane, recently urged South Africans to buy South African products.

“I’m not saying boycott other products. Let’s support local businesses and change our economy,” said the Sihle’s Brew founder.

Magubane was speaking at the launch of the website at the SABC offices in Johannesburg.

The online portal, which is the first site of its kind, was created not only to assist small, medium and even large local businesses to sell more, but it was also built using only South African suppliers and service providers, and is the brainchild of RSA Made and Proudly South African.

The online store provides South African products, ranging from toys, food, clothing, health and beauty products from 140 vendors.

Speaking at the launch, Proudly SA Chief Executive Officer, Eustace Mashimbye, said it was crucial to support local business in order to grow the economy and create much-needed jobs.

Mashimbye said while some Proudly SA members still believed in taking their products to the traditional markets, others were embracing the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

Proudly SA vets and verifies local content and quality and all vendor companies on the website adhere to labour and environmental legislation that form part of the terms of Proudly SA membership.

South Africa currently has an active online shopping population of over 18 million, who spend between 30 minutes and over three hours shopping online, racking up sales of R37,1 billion in 2017.

“Every single product that is on the site that will be offered to consumers will have to confirm to high-quality standards, and in the process we know that new jobs will be created,” he said.

– Source:
In a first for national carrier SAA, an all-female intercontinental flight took to the skies to transport people between South Africa and São Paulo, Brazil.
In the airline’s 84 year history, this flight is the first of its kind to be operated by a female crew – both in the cockpit and cabin.

Steering or rather flying the plane, was 53-year-old Captain Jane Trembath and she’s encouraging women and girls to never give up and aim sky high.

SAA has 69 female pilots. Six are captains and there are 114 female aircraft technicians.

In an industry dominated by men, these women are proving that they’re a force to be reckoned with, as they soar to greater heights.

– Source:
Ford has confirmed that the new Ranger Raptor will be making its way into Europe, as the new model debuted at the Gamescom trade fair, in Cologne, Germany.
The Ranger Raptor that will be sold in Europe, will be built at the Silverton Assembly Plant in Pretoria, following a R3-billion investment in plant upgrades earlier this year.

Developed by Ford Performance for the true enthusiast off-roader, the first-ever Ranger Raptor will go on sale to customers in Europe in mid-2019, powered by a Bi-turbo version of Ford’s 2.0-litre EcoBlue diesel engine that delivers 156kW (213hp) and 500Nm of torque; and Ford’s new 10-speed automatic gearbox.

Ford and Microsoft also revealed that the new Ranger Raptor will feature in the new Forza Horizon 4 video racing game, giving even more performance-driving fans the opportunity to experience the pick-up’s capabilities.

By launching the new Ford Ranger Raptor at Gamescom – Europe’s biggest event of its kind – Ford became the first manufacturer to launch a new vehicle at the event.

– Source:
International advocacy organisation Global Citizen announced recently that Trevor Noah would host the Global Citizen Festival: Mandela 100, the free-ticketed event on Sunday, 2 December 2018, at the FNB Stadium in Johannesburg.
The festival will be headlined by Beyoncé & Jay-Z, Cassper Nyovest, D'banj, Ed Sheeran, Eddie Vedder, Femi Kuti, Pharrell Williams & Chris Martin, Sho Madjozi, Kacey Musgraves, Tiwa Savage, Usher and Wizkid.

The event will also be hosted by Bonang Matheba, Naomi Campbell, Gayle King, Bob Geldof, Tyler Perry and Forest Whitaker.

Oprah Winfrey also will be giving a special keynote address at the event.

About his hosting duties at the global event, Trevor Noah said: "It is an honour to be a part of the Global Citizen Festival event celebrating the life and legacy of Nelson Mandela. I am where I am today living as a free South African because of much of what he did and so I'm beyond excited to be teaming up with so many others to pay tribute to the man in his home country."

The organisation also announced plans for a skills training project that will empower the next generation of South Africans to gain essential work experience and training, by offering year-long paid fellowships to young South Africans to gain valuable work experience.

– Source:
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Editor: Delien Burger
Picture Editor: Delien Burger
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