Issue 81 | 17 October 2013
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The State Visit was used to deepen cooperation in areas such as manufacturing, skills development, energy, maritime, agriculture, science and technology, arts and culture and development cooperation.

On 14 October, President Jacob Zuma hosted President Franҫois Hollande of the Republic of France for his first State Visit to South Africa at the Union Buildings in Pretoria. The visit took the relations between the two countries to a higher level.

President Hollande was welcomed by the Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, on his arrival at the Waterkloof Air Force Base in Pretoria. South Africa engaged France, informed by the country’s new socio-economic blueprint, the National Development Plan (NDP), which spells out what society in South Africa should be by the year 2030, prioritising inclusive economic growth, job creation and prosperity.

Economic discussions took place, particularly against the background of the two key instruments which now fall under the NDP umbrella – the New Growth Path and the Industrial Action Policy Plan.

The two leaders also discussed cooperation on peace and security on the continent and in promoting Africa’s regional infrastructure development programme and economic integration initiatives.

President Zuma is scheduled to attend the African peace and security summit that will be hosted by President Hollande in France in December.



The summit took place under the theme: “Africa’s Relationship with the International Criminal
Court (ICC)”.

On 12 October, President Jacob Zuma, concluded his visit to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, where he led the South African delegation to the extraordinary summit of the assembly of heads of state and government of the African Union (AU).

Having reiterated their commitment to fight impunity, promote human rights and democracy, as well as the rule of law and good governance on the continent, the heads of state and government took a number of decisions with regard to the relationship generally between African states and the ICC, in particular with regard to the situation involving the Republic of Kenya.

Among other things, the summit decided:

• To endorse the AU process of expanding the mandate of the African Court of Justice and Human Rights to try international crimes such as genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes.

• That no charges shall be commenced or continued before any international court or tribunal against any serving head of state or government or anybody acting in such capacity during his/her term of office. To safeguard the constitutional order, stability and integrity of member states, no serving AU head of state or government or anybody acting or entitled to act in such a capacity, shall be required to appear before any international court or tribunal during their term of office.

• That Kenya should send a letter to the United Nations Security Council (UNSC), requesting the deferral, in conformity with Article 16 of the Rome Statute, of the proceedings against the President and Deputy President of Kenya. This letter would be endorsed by all African states parties.

• To set up a contact group of the executive council to undertake consultations with the members of the UNSC, in particular, its five permanent members, with a view to engaging with the UNSC on all concerns of the AU on its relationship with the ICC, including the deferral of the Kenyan and Sudanese cases, in order to obtain their feedback.

The summit also appointed the new AU commissioner for peace and security, His Excellency Ambassador Smail Chergui.

Prime Minister Tusk’s visit to South Africa is his first visit to South Africa since he became the Prime Minister of Poland in November 2007.
The Deputy President of the Republic of South Africa, Kgalema Motlanthe, is hosting the Prime Minister of Poland, Donald Tusk, on an Official Visit to South Africa.

The Prime Minister’s visit was preceded by the political consultations in Pretoria on 10 July 2013 between Deputy Minister Marius Fransman and his Polish counterpart, Beata Stelmach, to review bilateral relations and prepare for the Official Visit of the Prime Minister.

South Africa and Poland enjoy warm and cordial relations.

Total trade between South Africa and Poland grew from R2,6 billion in 2006 to R6,3 billion in 2012. South Africa’s major exports to Poland are dominated by machinery equipment and vehicles, salt and sulphur, aluminium, ores, slag and ash. Poland’s major exports to South Africa are machinery and nuclear reactors, electrical, electronic equipment, and vehicles other than railway, tramway, essential oils, perfumes and miscellaneous manufactured articles.

South Africa has significant investments in Poland in the beverages, paper, furniture manufacturing, and retail and distribution sectors. Polish commercial interests in South Africa are mainly in the tourism, aviation, pharmaceuticals, mining equipment and services sector, heavy duty industrial equipment and glassware.


South Africa and Sweden enjoy warm and cordial relations. In 2002, South Africa and Sweden established a Bi-National Commission (BNC) as a formal structure to coordinate bilateral cooperation between the two countries.

Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe and the Deputy Prime Minister of Sweden, Jan Björklund, recently convened the Eighth South Africa-Sweden BNC in Pretoria.

The Eighth Session assessed the state of relations between the two countries, particularly the implementation of the programme of bilateral cooperation.

Discussions focussed on strengthening and deepening cooperation in the areas of the economy, education, skills development and science and technology.

Sweden is an important investor in South Africa with more than 100 companies active in the country and contributing to employment creation. –
Acting GCIS CEO, Phumla Williams said, “Government will use this innovative undertaking to raise public awareness and stimulate public discourse on South Africa’s foreign policy. Ubuntu Radio will be accessible to South Africans and beyond the borders of our country, able to reach many parts of the world”.
Government has congratulated the Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO) on the anticipated launch of the new 24-hour online radio station, Ubuntu Radio.

The radio station will also enrich the available bouquet of government platforms ranging from the bi-weekly newspaper, Vuk’uzenzele, GovComms (a quarterly newsletter), the Public Sector Manager magazine and the online South African Government News Agency, which make it possible for South Africans to engage with government content.

“Ubuntu Radio is another platform that will further shape public discourse on matters of national importance and government is confident that the online radio station will keep audiences informed about the policies and activities of government and the opportunities arising from these programmes,” said Williams.
“Additionally, the Saldanha Bay IDZ is likely to attract foreign direct investment worth approximately R9,3 billion over 25 years”, said Minister Rob Davies.

President Jacob Zuma will officially launch the Saldanha Bay Industrial Development Zone (IDZ) at Saldanha Bay on South Africa’s south-western coast on 31 October, the Department of Trade and Industry announced recently. The IDZ is one of the 18 strategic integrated projects of the Presidential Infrastructure Coordinating Commission, the intergovernmental body that is overseeing South Africa’s infrastructure drive.

The Minister of Trade and Industry, Rob Davies, said in a statement that a feasibility study had shown that the Saldanha Bay IDZ project had huge potential for helping to lift South Africa’s economy onto a higher industrial growth path. The study found that the IDZ could potentially contribute 86% to the gross geographic product of the Western Cape and create in the region of 12 000 new jobs.

The study also found that Saldanha Bay was strategically located to serve as a service, maintenance, fabrication and supply hub for the booming African oil and gas sector, due to the increasing number of oil rigs requiring maintenance, and their traffic flow passing from the west to the east coast of Africa. –

In his acceptance speech in Washington, DC, where he was attending the annual meetings of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, Minister Gordhan thanked emerging markets for its recognition of South Africa and its economic team, which has kept the South African economy on track during a very difficult time.

South Africa’s Minister of Finance, Pravin Gordhan, was recently named sub-Saharan Africa’s Finance Minister of the Year by Emerging Markets, a website that provides news and analysis on international economics and global financial markets.

“The prudent fiscal policy led by Pravin Gordhan, who became finance minister in 2009 at the height of the global economic crisis, has been praised by analysts, especially since South Africa is more exposed than other emerging markets to dangers stemming from an eventual pull-back of quantitative easing by the Federal Reserve,” read the citation by Emerging Markets. –
Deputy President Motlanthe, who is chairperson of Sanac, said the approval of the largest Global Fund grant South Africa had ever received would allow the country to expand its programmes for the treatment of AIDS and TB, but also for the important work of preventing new infections.
South Africa has received R3 billion from the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe announced during a meeting of the South African National AIDS Council (Sanac) in Rustenburg, North West, recently.

The Minister of Health, Aaron Motsoaledi, said 52% of the grant would go to the national Department of Health, with the rest being divided among a range of non-governmental organisations working in the field, such as Right to Care, the National Religious Association for Social Development, and the National AIDS Convention of South Africa.

On HIV and AIDS, Minister Motsoaledi said the money would be spent on various programmes, including the procurement of antiretroviral medicines for 350 000 patients within the country, and on strengthening the central procurement unit to avoid drug stock-outs. –
The approval establishes Sunbird as the operator of South Africa’s largest and most advanced undeveloped gas field with a 76% working interest, with national oil company PetroSA holding the remaining 24% of the licence.
Australian-listed company Sunbird Energy has received government approval for the acquisition of the Ibhubesi gas project off South Africa’s west coast, paving the way for a multi-billion rand investment that would boost the country’s gas-to-electricity generation capacity.

Sunbird and its South African empowerment partner, Umbono Capital, were “particularly happy with the extremely professional and timely handling of the approvals process by the regulator”, Sunbird said recently.

“On our current economic modelling of the 2P reserves base, the project has a potential net present value of over US$1 billion,” said Sunbird Energy chairperson Kerwin Rana. Sunbird said it would be looking to supply gas from Ibhubesi to state company Eskom’s 1 338-megawatt (MW) Ankerlig power station, which is currently burning expensive imported diesel, and a new 474 MW gas-fired station for which the Department of Energy has requested private-sector proposals. –
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