President Thabo Mbeki to depart for Washington

Pretoria - South African President Thabo Mbeki, accompanied by Foreign Minister Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, will today, Monday 30 May 2005, depart for Washington where he will hold political bilateral discussions with President George Bush of the United States on Wednesday, 1 June 2005.

The bilateral meeting between President Mbeki and President Bush comes against the background of preparations for the forthcoming G-8 Summit to be hosted by Britain in Gleneagles, Scotland from 7-8 July 2005.

In that context President Mbeki has been consulting with various leaders of the G-8 with a view to ensuring practical outcomes for Africa and the South during the Summit of the G-8. There is a convergence of views between both President Mbeki and President Bush regarding the need for practical outcomes.

In addition, the two leaders will discuss conflict resolution and peacekeeping in Africa, the G-8 Africa Plan, the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA), the Millennium Challenge Account and Overseas Development Aid (ODA) to Africa.

At the G-8 Summit, South Africa together with Algeria, Ghana, Nigeria, Senegal and Uganda, has been invited to participate in the Africa Outreach segment of the Summit.

The African group together with Mexico and China will also participate in discussions on climate change and debt relief.

The visit to Washington will also provide an excellent opportunity for the two leaders to consolidate and strengthen already existing strategic bilateral and economic relations between both countries.

Bilateral Economic Relations

(US$ millions) 20032004
SA Exports to USUS$ 4 888US$ 5 926
SA Imports from USUS$ 2 698US$ 2 977
Total TradeUS$ 7 586US$ 8 903

Issued by Ronnie Mamoepa on 082 990 4853

Department of Foreign Affairs
Private Bag X152
30 May 2005


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