Issue 84 | 01 November 2013
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The two presidents discussed political, economic and security cooperation with an emphasis on the search for peace and stability in the eastern part of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and the Great Lakes Region.
At the invitation of President Joseph Kabila Kabange, President Jacob Zuma undertook a State Visit to the DRC from 29 to 30 October 2013.

South Africa is playing a critical part in the promotion and consolidation of peace and stability in the DRC by contributing troops to the United Nations (UN) Stabilisation Mission in the DRC (MONUSCO), as well as a Battalion serving as part of the MONUSCO Intervention Brigade established under the UN Security Council Resolution 2098.

South Africa is also a signatory to the UN/African Union Peace, Security and Cooperation Framework for the DRC and the region, signed on 24 February 2013.

The growing bilateral economic cooperation between South Africa and the DRC received added impetus through a two-day Business Forum, held in Kinshasa on 29 and 30 October 2013.

South Africa and China have extensive trade and economic relations. China is South Africa’s largest trading partner and a major investor in key sectors such as mining and financial services. Total trade figure currently stands at R202 billion. Both governments are committed to work together to raise the volumes of trade and investment between the two countries.

Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe led a South African delegation to Beijing to attend the Fifth Bi-National Commission (BNC) between South Africa and the People’s Republic of China (PRC) on 28 and 29 October 2013.

Since the establishment of diplomatic relations in 1998, the relationship between South Africa and China has been growing strong: from a Partnership in 2000, leading to the establishment of the BNC in 2001, to a Strategic Partnership in 2008 and to a Comprehensive Partnership in 2010 with the signing of the Beijing Declaration.

The Fifth BNC took place within the context of the Beijing Declaration on the Establishment of a Comprehensive Strategic Partnership and was co-chaired by Deputy President Motlanthe and the Chinese Vice President, Li Yuanchao.

In advancing South-South cooperation, South Africa participates in various multilateral forums with China, including the G20 and G77+China; Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS); Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC); Brazil, South Africa, India and China (BASIC), etc.

Africa’s relations with China are conducted within the framework of the FOCAC. South Africa and China are working together to address development challenges and strengthen China-Africa relations. An important milestone in Sino-South Africa relations was last year when South Africa assumed the Co-Chairship of FOCAC for the next six years, and will host the next FOCAC Ministerial Meeting in 2015. During its tenure, South Africa will continue to ensure the advancing of South-South cooperation and that special attention is given to the implementation of the African Agenda.


The aim of the visit was to strengthen and broaden the economic cooperation and trade
relationship between South Africa and Belgium.
The Deputy President of Belgium, Pieter De Crem, accompanied by the Deputy Minister of Defence and Military Veterans, Thabang Makwetla, visited the Simonstown Naval Base in Cape Town on 28 October 2013.

The Belgian Deputy President formed part of the Belgian Federal Government and trade delegation (of more than 200 investors) who visited South Africa from 23 to 28 October 2013. Princess Astrid of the Kingdom of Belgium led the delegation, accompanied by more than six Belgian ministers.



“Deputy Minister Fransman conveyed to President Banda and the people of Malawi the commitment that South Africa has towards the maintenance of the cordial relations that exist between the two sister republics.”

The Deputy Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Marius Fransman, has returned from a working visit in Lilongwe, Malawi, where he participated in a meeting of the Southern African Development Community (SADC).

While in Lilongwe, Deputy Minister Fransman paid a courtesy call on President Joyce Banda as Chairperson of the SADC.

South Africa and Malawi share strong historical political, economic and cultural ties.

Both countries have committed to the continuation of these warm relations in the context of regional integration and intra-Africa trade.
South Africa commends the people of Madagascar for the peaceful
manner in which they conducted themselves during the elections.
South Africa, as a country and member of the Southern African Development Community (SADC), considers elections as a platform with which proper nurturing of governance through the electoral processes enhance democracy. As such, the conduct of democratic elections creates a condusive climate for the populace to have confidence in the institutions of governance.

It is within this context that the 25 October 2013 presidential elections in the Republic of Madagascar should be understood, as it marked an important milestone in the political life of the Republic of Madagascar as a country, and to the region as a whole. Holding regular elections remains an indispensable marker of progress and the entrenchment of democracy in any country in the world.

South Africa, as part of the SADC collective, but more intensely as the outgoing member of the SADC Organ Troika, participated fully in the SADC Election Observer Mission (SEOM) and deployed a sizable number of observers in line with its obligations to the SADC who ably participated in the SEOM that was deployed to 17 of the 22 regions of the Republic of Madagascar.

The SEOM’s report on the Madagascar elections reflects the collective observations made by the region during the electoral process in Madagascar as per the SADC Principles and Guidelines Governing Democratic Elections. Accordingly, South Africa subscribed fully to the guidelines in defining the successful holding of a free, fair and peaceful election as was the case in the Republic of Madagascar.

“As a country, we congratulate the Government of Transition, the CENIT, the stakeholders and all the people of Madagascar for the peaceful elections in line with the SADC Principles and Guidelines Governing Democratic Elections,” the Department of International Relations and Cooperation said in a statement.


The Carnegie Group meetings provide an informal and unofficial context in which to discuss science policy and promote international communication among G8 leaders and the developing countries on scientific issues. As such, the G8+5 has grown in international science and science policy on issues such as global security, energy, sustainable development, species preservation, and world health.
The Minister of Science and Technology, Derek Hanekom, attended the 41st Carnegie G8 meeting, held in Washington, DC, from 25 to 27 October 2013.

The G8 Carnegie Group was established in 1991. Member countries include the United States of America, the United Kingdom, Russia, Japan, Italy, Canada, France, Germany and the European Union. In recognition of the growing importance of the emerging economies, the Carnegie Group has since 2006 extended invitations to Brazil, China, India, Mexico and South Africa (the G8+5).

These science policy discussions have been promoted in the international community by meetings of the G8+5 science ministers and advisers. These meetings provide a strategic platform for the developed and developing nations to engage with modern scientific developments and knowledge-sharing. Furthermore, they enable countries to develop a closer working relationship, to increase their understanding of various national perspectives and to exchange views on science issues.



The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Biodiversity would be accompanied by the endorsement of an implementation plan outlining steps and time frames for eradicating wildlife crimes between the two countries.


South Africa and Laos are to sign an agreement aimed at curbing rhino poaching, the Department of Environmental Affairs announced recently.

“South Africa regards rhino poaching and illicit trafficking in wildlife and endangered species as part of the new and emerging forms of crime,” the Minister of Water and Environmental Affairs, Edna Molewa, said in a statement.

The number of rhino poached for their horns in South Africa since January 2013 has increased to 790, while 31 poachers have been arrested in the past two weeks. The total number of people facing rhino poaching-related charges has increased to 259.

Molewa said the Government had established partnerships with privately owned nature conservation estates to address the scourge and put specific measures in place to combat illegal hunting within South Africa’s borders and abroad.

The department has also signed agreements with several Asian countries as part of efforts to stop the illegal trade of rhino horn.

An implementation plan, putting into action the terms of an MoU signed with China on cooperation in wetland and desert ecosystems and wildlife conservation, is also expected to be signed soon.

“Rhino poaching was declared a national security risk and a national priority in 2011 and is being dealt with through a plethora of interventions at the highest levels of government,” Molewa said. Source:




The conference provided a platform for various role-players to craft a development path for Africa’s maritime industries and establish a Pan-African Partnership for the development of Africa’s blue economy.


The inaugural African Maritime Indaba took place in Sandton, Johannesburg, on 24 and 25 October 2013. The indaba was hosted by the South African Maritime Safety Authority and the maritime industry.




UNAids said Bala would use the position to speak out about the stigma and discrimination suffered by HIV-infected people and on gender inequality and gender-based violence.

Gospel and RnB musician Loyiso Bala has been appointed as the national goodwill ambassador for the joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAids).

UNAids coordinator Catherine Sozi said it was delighted to welcome him.

“He has a powerful role to play in helping us highlight critical issues in the HIV response,” she said.

Bala was positive about his duties.”I believe passionately in young people and making a difference in their lives. This new partnership with UNAids provides me with a way to speak to them about issues which affect them,” he said. Source:
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