Media statement following the signing of the Bilateral Agreement establishing diplomatic relations between South Africa and South Sudan

On 21 September 2011, International Relations and Cooperation Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane signed an agreement establishing Diplomatic Relations between the Government of the Republic of South Africa and the Government of the Republic of South Sudan with her South Sudanese counterpart, Lieutenant General Nhial Deng Nhial, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of the Republic of South Sudan on the sidelines of the 66th Session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA66). 

The signing of the Agreement establishing diplomatic relations between the two countries is a major milestone in the relations between the two countries. The Agreement is expected to lay the basis for the conclusion of other agreements, particularly economic and trade-related frameworks aimed at promoting two-way trade and investment between South Africa and South Sudan.
South Africa has, since the signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement in 2005, been actively involved bilaterally and multilaterally in its capacity as the Chair of the African Union Ministerial Committee on Post-Conflict and Reconstruction and Development (AUPCRD) in the entire Sudan.

More than 1 600 officials from the Government of South Sudan have been trained by South Africa to date as part of a capacity-building programme taking place within the context of the AUPCRD.

South Africa will continue with its post-conflict reconstruction and development projects as it is evident that South Sudan requires more skilled civil servants who are able to provide basic services to the people of the emerging State. 

At the moment, a group of diplomats from South Sudan, together with colleagues from other countries in East Africa, are undergoing diplomatic training in South Africa. South Africa invites other countries to also support initiatives aimed at transferring skills to the South Sudanese to ensure that the Government of South Sudan has enough trained officials.

In line with the objectives of the African Agenda, South Africa will continue to support efforts aimed at ensuring a peaceful and stable environment in South Sudan and its neighbourhood, as well as assist in creating conditions for the entrenchment of democracy and the development of government institutions for the betterment of the people of South Sudan.
On the economic front, South Africa has been vigorously pursuing economic and investment opportunities in the new Republic of South Sudan. The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) is planning a visit to South Sudan in early October 2011, which will include in its delegation a multi-sectoral South African business component.

For further information please contact Mr. Clayson Monyela spokesperson for DIRCO on 082 884 5974


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22 September 2011


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