Communiqué on the 1st Ministerial Meeting of the Joint
Permanent Commission for Cooperation (JPCC) between South Africa and Botswana,
13 October 2005, Pretoria
- At the invitation of the Minister of Foreign
Affairs of the Republic of South Africa, Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, the Minister
of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of the Republic of Botswana,
HE Lt Gen MS Merafhe, visited South Africa on 13 October 2005 for the 1st Ministerial
Meeting of the Joint Permanent Commission for Cooperation between South Africa
- Minister Merafhe was accompanied by Botswana's High
Commissioner to South Africa and Consul General to Johannesburg, as well as other
- Minister Dlamini Zuma was accompanied by South
Africa's High Commissioner to Botswana and senior officials of the Department
of Foreign Affairs.
- Minister Dlamini Zuma welcomed Minister Merafhe
and his delegation to South Africa, and reiterated South Africa's commitment to
close fraternal relations with Botswana. Discussions were held in a friendly and
constructive manner. Both Parties noted with satisfaction the excellent relations
between the two countries, and the fact that their meeting took place shortly
before the first State Visit to South Africa by President Mogae. Minister Dlamini
Zuma noted that during President Mbeki's visit to Botswana in March 2003, President
Mbeki became the first foreign Head of State to address Botswana's Parliament.
Minister Dlamini Zuma once again thanked Botswana for this singular honour.
The Heads of Delegation reaffirmed their intention to work towards the further
strengthening of bilateral relations, as well as to intensify the close co-operation
between the two countries for the future well-being of both their peoples, and
for the benefit of the African continent as a whole.
- The Heads
of Delegation noted that while relations have been cordial since South Africa's
first democratic elections in 1994, the signing of the agreement on the Joint
Permanent Cooperation Commission by the Presidents in 2003 laid the legal and
institutional framework to consolidate and deepen the relationship.
Parties noted that since the establishment of the JPCC, agreements on the Avoidance
of Double Taxation and in the Field of Science and Technology Cooperation had
been signed. The Parties further noted that several additional agreements were
being prepared for signature during the forthcoming State Visit by President Mogae,
- The Heads of Delegation noted the report of the meeting of
Senior Officials which took place in Gaborone from 27 to 28 September 2005, which
was attended by officials from several departments of both countries. Officials
reported on progress on several matters in the following areas:
Security and stability
Foreign Policy issues
- The Ministers urged officials to ensure
that some of the long outstanding matters are resolved speedily, in order to allow
the Parties to focus on strategic issues.
- Minister Dlamini Zuma
expressed South Africa's pleasure at Botswana's taking over chair of SADC at the
Summit in August 2005. She further indicated that South Africa looked forward
to Botswana's leadership, and assured Botswana of South Africa support in key
issues identified by President Mogae in his acceptance speech at the Summit.
two Heads of Delegation renewed their commitment to actively participate in programmes
and mechanisms of the New Partnership for Africa's Development (NEPAD) as the
basis for the development of the continent.
- The Parties discussed
regional and multilateral developments, in particular the reform of the United
Nations institutions. The Ministers agreed to continue collaborating closely in
their in efforts in these matters.
- Minister Merafhe expressed
Botswana's appreciation of the role South Africa was playing in conflict resolution
on the continent, eg in Cote d' Ivoire.
Pretoria, 13 October 2005
by the Department of Foreign Affairs
Private Bag X152