Joint Communiqué issued at the Conclusion of the Third Session of the Zimbabwe – South Africa Joint Commission
- The Third Session of the Zimbabwe-South Africa Joint Commission was held in Victoria Falls from 14 to 16 March, 2009.
- The Meeting was attended by Ministers and Senior Officials from the two countries. The Zimbabwe delegation was headed by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Honourable Simbarashe S. Mumbengegwi while the Minister of Foreign Affairs Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma headed the South African delegation.
- Discussions were held in a friendly and cordial atmosphere characteristic of the excellent bilateral relations between the two countries.
- The two sides exchanged views on measures to strengthen economic cooperation between the two countries. In this regard the two sides discussed measures to support the recovery of Zimbabwe’s productive sectors including opening of lines of credit, export credit insurance, spartial development initiatives and trade facilitation measures.
- The two sides agreed to finalise negotiations on the Bilateral Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement, the Memorandum on Economic Cooperation and the Avoidance of Double Taxation Agreement.
- In the area of energy, the two sides agreed to enhance cooperation in the generation and distribution of power. To this end, a Joint Working Committee will be established to discuss the technical details in this sector.
- The two sides agreed to cooperate in enhancing production in the mining sector, beneficiation of minerals, finger printing precious metals and harmonization of mining policies to attract investment.
- The two sides agreed to finalize negotiations on a draft Protocol on Tourism and to establish a Bilateral Tourism Technical Committee in view of the Tourism growth prospects coming from the 2010 FIFA World Cup and the Transfrontier Conservation Parks. In the area of the environment, the two sides exchanged views on the CITES processes and agreed to cooperate in training and harmonization of legislation.
- Noting the importance of ensuring food security and agricultural production, Zimbabwe expressed appreciation to the Government of the Republic of South Africa for the provision of agricultural inputs under the SADC initiative.
- In the social sectors, the two sides exchanged views on collaboration in combating infectious diseases and other health management issues, labour migration, human settlement development and housing, public service administration, arts and culture, youth, gender and community development. The two sides negotiated draft agreements and MoUs which will be signed once the two parties have fulfilled the legal requirements in their respective countries.
- The two sides advanced discussions on longstanding immigration matters between the two countries.
- In the legal sector, the two sides agreed to expedite ratification of the SADC Protocol on Extradition and Mutual Legal Assistance and cooperation on matters concerning community service and pre-trial diversion for children and young persons in conflict with the law.
- The two sides exchanged views on political developments in their respective countries. They agreed to work together in Zimbabwe’s re-engagement with the international community and in the lobbying for the lifting of economic sanctions in keeping with the 2009 Addis Ababa AU Summit Resolution and the Zimbabwe Global Political Agreement.
- The South African delegation thanked the Zimbabwean delegation for the hospitality and excellent facilities extended to them during the Session.
- The next session will be held in South Africa on dates to be mutually agreed between the two parties.
VICTORIA FALLS, 16 MARCH, 2009