Issue 66 | 12 July 2013
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"The council reiterates the AU's condemnation and rejection of any illegal seizure of power. The overthrow of the democratically elected president does not conform to the relevant provisions of Egypt's Constitution, and therefore falls under the definition of an unconstitutional change of government."
The AU's Peace and Security Council (PSC) has decided to suspend the participation of Egypt in AU activities until constitutional order is restored in that country. The decision, which in is line with the AU's strict rules against unconstitutional changes of government, was decided at a meeting of the PSC in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, on 5 July .

The meeting was called after Judge Adli Mansour was sworn in as Egypt's caretaker President on 4 July, a day after Mohamed Morsi was removed from the presidency by the country's army. This followed a week of nationwide protests by millions of anti-government demonstrators accusing Morsi of a grab of power.

The South African Government said that, in line with the AU Constitutive Act, it was opposed to all forms of unconstitutional changes of government. South Africa has been urging the concerned parties in Egypt to resolve their differences through dialogue and consultation.

“The Government is of the view that all efforts should be made to avoid violent confrontation between contending parties. Instability in Egypt may have far-reaching consequences on the already precarious situation in the country, as well as the North African region and Middle East."
“South Africa’s foreign policy of Ubuntu simply means that what we want for ourselves, we also wish for others. Our struggle for a better life in South Africa is therefore intertwined with our pursuit of a better Africa in a better world.”
The Deputy Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Ebrahim Ebrahim, delivered an address to the South African Institute of International Affairs (SAIIA) on “Celebrating 19 Years of South Africa’s Foreign Policy: Milestones and Challenges” on 4 July 2013.

“While we celebrate our successes, we are also cognisant that more needs to be done. However, our successes … must inspire us for the challenges ahead,” Deputy Minister Ebrahim said.
He said that South Africa’s foreign policy remained unique and continued to speak to its domestic priorities.

"It is therefore in our best interest that Africa and the world emerge a better place for all to live in. In all we do as a country, we must tap into the wisdom of our forebears to achieve some of the ideals placed before us by our history. It is the very character of our history that should place us firmly as champions of democracy, good governance, human rights, development, peace and justice,” the Deputy Minister said.

As SAIIA heads towards its 80th birthday, “we look forward to your continued contribution to research, robust and balanced debate, and inputs on key issues in international relations”. SAIIA has been voted as the premier think-tank in sub-Saharan Africa by its peers from across the world for the fourth consecutive year.



South Africa and Poland have shared experiences of transitions to democracies and shared
values of freedom, human rights and democracy.

The Deputy Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Marius Fransman, received the Under-Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs of Poland, Beata Stelmach, on Wednesday, 10 July 2013, in Pretoria.

The Protocol on Political Consultations, signed in September 1995, mandates the ministers or deputy ministers of foreign affairs of both countries to meet at least once a year to review bilateral relations and strengthen bilateral cooperation in political, economic, trade, scientific, technological, cultural fields and exchange views and coordinate efforts on regional and international peace, security and development issues of common interest.

The bilateral consultations served as a preparatory meeting for the Official Visit of the Polish Prime Minister, Donald Tusk, to South Africa in October 2013.

South Africa and Poland enjoy cordial and growing bilateral relations and both countries are important partners in the context of the South Africa and Africa-European Union partnerships.

Total trade between South Africa and Poland grew from R2,6 billion in 2006 to R6,3 billion in 2012. Imports from Poland on the other hand, increased from R1,3 billion in 2006 to R4,6 billion in 2012.

Deputy Minister Fransman also met the State Secretary for Foreign Affairs of Spain, Gonzalo de Benito Secades, on Thursday, 11 July 2013, for bilateral consultations.




South Africa has about 1 132 active construction sites, creating employment for about 178 000 people on projects monitored by the Presidential Infrastructure Coordinating Commission (PICC).

The PICC met in Pretoria on 3 July to discuss projects worth R750 billion. The meeting examined the successes and challenges in the roll-out of the 18 strategic integrated projects (SIPs), which currently make up the country's multi-billion rand National Infrastructure Plan (NIP).

The plan looks to transform the economic landscape, while simultaneously creating a significant number of new jobs and straightening service delivery. The SIPs cover various projects of economic and social infrastructure projects such as schools, hospitals and new power stations.

Speaking at the meeting, President Jacob Zuma said that he was happy with the development progress of the country.
The PICC brings together representatives of the three spheres of government, Cabinet ministers, premiers, metro mayors and South African Local Government Association representatives to harmonise developments in the NIP.


The South African Government has taken note of the announcement of abdication from the throne made by His Majesty, King Albert II of the Kingdom of Belgium, on 3 July 2013.

On hearing the news of King Albert's abdication, President Jacob Zuma expressed his and South Africa's most profound gratitude to His Majesty for his personal role in strengthening the ties of friendship and cooperation that exist between South Africa and Belgium. President Zuma also paid tribute to King Albert for his role in the socio-economic development of Belgium.

Belgium is South Africa's 12th-largest export destination globally, fourth in the European Union, with total exports from South Africa to Belgium at R15,3 billion and total imports at R10,3 billion in 2012. Belgium ranks as the sixth-biggest investor in South Africa, and fourth-biggest source of official development assistance from Europe, with a total €50 million committed until 2016. Belgium also remains an important source of tourism for South Africa, with a record tourism figure of 44 125 in 2012, placing her in the 15th position globally as a long-haul source of tourism.

King Albert will hand over the Crown to his eldest son, Prince Philippe, on 21 July 2013.
“President Mandela's lifelong struggle for freedom and human rights for South Africans and oppressed people all over the world were, at one level, dedicated to acknowledging the fundamental worth of each and every human being.” – Minister of Home Affairs, Naledi Pandor
South Africa's new smart ID cards will officially be launched on former President Nelson Mandela's birthday on 18 July to honour his legacy.

The Department of Home Affairs will hand over the new smart IDs on the day to President Jacob Zuma, Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe, former presidents Thabo Mbeki and FW de Klerk, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Winnie Madikizela Mandela, Sophie de Bruyn, Andrew Mlangeni, Dennis Goldberg, Ahmed Kathrada and also a few senior citizens in the 80 to 90 age group, who are termed the "Mandela Generation".

The new smart ID card will have a microchip, the specifications for which cannot be disclosed for security reasons. The chip will house the necessary biometric data unique to every individual. The information on the chip will be laser-engraved to prevent tampering.
South African financial services group Old Mutual is expanding its African operations with the acquisition of a controlling stake in micro-finance company Faulu Kenya. The deal, which makes up a portion of the R5 billion which the company has set aside for African growth, is expected to reach completion by the end of 2013, dependent on regulatory approvals and the finalisation of legal agreements.

"The exercise entailed a rigorous vetting process to pick the best suited partner in line with Faulu's commitment to being a financial bridge to success for Kenyans," said Faulu managing director, John Mwara.

Faulu was established as a loan scheme in Nairobi in 1991 and expanded into a micro-financing firm. It was the first micro-finance institution to be licensed to mobilise deposits from the public by the Central Bank of Kenya in 2009. It now has over 100 service outlets, including 31 banking branches in 44 of the 47 counties in Kenya with over 400 000 active customers.

Old Mutual Kenya CEO, Tavaziva Madzinga, said that this deal confirmed Old Mutual Kenya's commitment to availing affordable insurance products to millions of Kenyans through strategic partners like Faulu, whose fast-expanding branch network creates an excellent distribution channel.
Old Mutual Kenya comprises part of the long-term savings and investment business of the
Old Mutual Group, which is listed on the Johannesburg and London stock exchanges.


Travel and Leisure readers determined the best destinations, hotels, cruises and companies in the 18th annual poll designed by the magazine's editors.
Cape Town has once again been crowned one of the top 10 cities in the world, coming fourth in Travel and Leisure magazine's annual "World's Best Awards" and claiming a spot in the magazine's hall of fame.

It was also ranked the world's top city in the Africa and Middle East category.

"Cape Town has consistently featured in the Travel and Leisure line-up, and we are proud to maintain a top-of-mind position with the world's most avid travel lovers," Cape Town Tourism chief executive officer, Mariette du Toit-Helmbold, said in a statement. 

Five of the city's hotels also appeared on the list, with Cape Grace claiming the highest spot in 26th position, up from 44 in the 2012 awards. This earned the hotel a spot in the hall of fame.

The conference will provide a platform for Africa to adequately address the challenges of urbanisation and harness urbanisation for human development.


South Africa will co-host the “Leading Change in the City” Conference with the United Nations Human Settlements programme (UN-HABITAT) on 5 and 6 September 2013. The emphasis of the conference is on women’s participation in urban life in Africa.

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