Deputy Minister Aziz Pahad to Host Iraqi Counterpart Deputy Foreign Minister Talib Al-Bayati, Tshwane, South Africa, 4 October 2005

Tshwane - Deputy Foreign Minister Aziz Pahad will hold political and economic discussions with his Iraqi counterpart, Deputy Foreign Minister Talib Al-Bayati, at the Union Buildings in Tshwane on Tuesday, 4 October 2005.

Discussions between Deputy Ministers Pahad and Al-Bayati will be held within the context of South Africa's priority of promoting the peaceful resolution of the ongoing conflict in Iraq and its return to full sovereignty.

In this regard, the South African government officially recognised the Transitional Iraqi Government when the new Iraqi Ambassador Qassim Al-Rammah presented his credentials to President Mbeki on 17 June 2005.

Within this context, issues on the agenda of discussions between Deputy Ministers Pahad and Al-Bayati are likely to include:

  • The status of bilateral political and economic relations between South Africa and Iraq;
  • An overview of internal developments within Iraq by Deputy Minister Al-Bayati including developments within the constitutional and political processes, preparations for national elections scheduled for 15 December 2005 and post-conflict reconstruction in Iraq; and
  • A report on how the situation in Iraq impacts on regional security and stability including Israel and Palestine.

Bilateral Economic Relations 

South African exports to Iraq increased from R90 446 000 in 2004 to R233 806 000 during the first five months of 2005, making Iraq South Africa's fourth biggest export market in the Middle East.

Main imports from Iraq between 2001-2002 consisted of crude oil. Main exports to Iraq between 2001-May 2005 consisted of machinery, transport equipment, base metals, textiles, plastic products, chemical products, mineral products and prepared foodstuffs.

Issued by Ronnie Mamoepa on 082 990 4853

Department of Foreign Affairs
Private Bag X152

4 October 2005

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