Minister Maite Nkoana Mashabane to Co-Chair Intergovernmental Committee on Trade and Economic Cooperation (ITEC) 0n 27 October 2009 in Cape Town

Pretoria – International Relations and Cooperation Minister Maite Nkoana Mashabane will co-chair the 8th Session of South Africa-Russia Intergovernmental Committee on Trade and Economic Cooperation (ITEC) with the Minister for Natural Resources of the Russian Federation, Mr Yuri Trutnev in Cape Town on 27 October 2009. The ITEC Ministerial will be preceded by the senior officials meeting on the 26th October 2009.

The ITEC is a bilateral cooperation mechanism between South Africa and the Russian Federation, which meets annually to consider technical co-operation between the two countries. The 8th Session of ITEC takes place within the context of strengthening North –South Dialogue and against the backdrop of solid relations between the two countries with a particularly deep and extensive cooperation in the filed of scientific research.

The ITEC consists of eight technical Joint Sub-Committees led by the relevant line function departments as follows:

• Justice
• Trade, Investment and Banking;
• Minerals and Energy;
• Transport – Aviation and Maritime;
• Social Sector – Health and Education;
• Agriculture;
• Water Affairs and Forestry; and
• Science and Technology.

South Africa regards the Russian Federation as a strategic partner; close bilateral and multilateral ties exist between the two countries. While there is currently no structured mechanism for political dialogue between South Africa and Russia, ITEC serves as the mechanism for broadening and deepening economic and trade ties. ITEC tends to be the engine room for the generation of new bilateral agreements and for reviewing and bolstering implementation of those agreements. In addition South Africa and Russia jointly launched the South African satellite (Sumbandilasat) at the Russian space facility in Kazakhstan on 17 September 2009.

The 8th ITEC Session will also serve as a preparatory meeting for the envisaged State Visit by President Zuma to the Russian Federation in 2010.

Background on ITEC

Since the signing of ITEC in 1993, ITEC has proven to be an effective instrument that has directly contributed to improved two-way trade and investment, as well as critical skills and technology transfers. ITEC has also given practical substance to the political commitment on the part of the two countries to work together, as expressed in the Treaty of Friendship and Partnership signed during President Putin’s visit to South Africa in September 2006. It is envisaged that the 8th session of ITEC will not only address current issues in the evolving bilateral relationship, but that it will also afford an opportunity to identify and map key areas that would require attention in the year ahead.

Trade Between Sotuh and Russian Federation
January - December 2007-2008

  Jan-Dec 2007 Million US $ Jan-Dec 2008 Million US $
Export from South Africa to the Russian Federation 270,00 443,74

284,38 484,02
2270.00 433.74
Import from the Russian Federation into South Africa 14,38 40,28 14.38 40.28
TOTAL trade turnover: 284.38 484.02

Media Programme

Venue: Hotel Le Vendome Sea Point, Cape Town.

Tuesday, 27 October 2009.

09h30: Arrival of media
10h15-10h45: Opening remarks by the Co-Chairs of ITEC.
(Media in attendance)

12h15: Arrival of media ahead of the Press Conference.

12h45: Closing Remarks and media conference

End of media programme.

For more information contact Nomfanelo Kota on 082 459 3787.

Issued by the Department of International Relations and Cooperation
Private Bag X152
Pretoria, 0001.

25 October 2009

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