Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane to depart for Brazil ahead of State Visit by President Jacob Zuma, 08-09 October 2009.
Pretoria – International Relations and Cooperation Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane will today, Tuesday 06 October 2009, depart South Africa for Brazil to prepare for President Jacob Zuma’s State Visit scheduled for 08-09 October 2009.
President Jacob Zuma’s State Visit to Brazil takes place within the context of consolidating South-South cooperation, strengthening the existing bilateral ties and regional partnership, and deepening cooperation on the trilateral and multilateral levels between South Africa and Brazil.
The relationship between the two countries has evolved remarkably over the past ten years. Both countries share a very strong political and economic relationship at various levels: country-country (Joint Commission); trilateral (IBSA); and regional economic development (SACU-MERCOSUR). Both countries face serious challenges of unemployment, unequal distribution of income and sluggish economic growth. Several high-level visits have taken place since the return of democracy in South Africa.
In an endeavour to strengthen economic relations with Brazil, numerous export and investment missions to Brazil have been facilitated since November 2005. Different sectors were represented in these missions, ranging from mining, wine, information and telecommunications (ICT), auto, capital equipment and arts and crafts sectors. Similar missions have been organized to South Africa for the Brazilian business community.
In 2008 total trade between Brazil and South Africa reached US$ 2.52 billion from US$ 2.2 in 2007. We have witnessed a remarkable increase of 48% of SA exports to Brazil in 2008, which translates in a 25% trade deficit reduction (from US$1.2 billion in 2007 to less than US$1 billion in 2008).
For more information contact Nomfanelo Kota on 082 459 3787.
Issued by the Department of International Relations and Cooperation
Private Bag X152
06 October 2009.