Statement on Official Visit of Dr Ahmet Davutoğlu,  Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Turkey to South Africa. The Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Turkey, Dr Ahmet Davutoğlu, is scheduled to undertake an Official Visit to South Africa on 20 August 2011, at the invitation of his counterpart, Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane. The visit follows the successful Official Visit of Deputy President Motlanthe to Turkey in May 2010 at the invitation of Prime Minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan. During this visit the two countries agreed to consolidate and enhance bilateral political and economic relations.

The objectives of the Ministerial visit are to:

  • Further consolidate and enhance bilateral relations
  • Strengthen partnership on national priorities such as
    • Education and skills development
    • Crime prevention
    • Agriculture and rural development
    • Job creation
  • To strengthen cooperation on the African Agenda
  • To exchange views on multilateral issues of common interest   

The two Ministers will review the state of bilateral relations between the two countries, including an assessment of the implementation of agreements signed and key decisions of recent high level engagements. Since the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries several agreements have been signed covering such fields as Diplomatic and Political Consultations, Economic Cooperation, Tourism, and Police Cooperation. Eleven South African students have taken up Turkish Government Scholarships and will commence the undergraduates programs in various fields such as engineering and medical studies.

The Ministers will also review progress on the 2010-2014 Implementation Plan of the Africa-Turkey Partnership. In this context the Ministers will exchange views on how the two countries can work together to support the alignment of the Implementation Plan with NEPAD programmes.

Furthermore, the Ministers will exchange views on regional and global peace and security issues.  In particular the two Ministers will reflect on recent development in the Middle East and North Africa region. Similarly, the Ministers will explore possible collaboration in post conflict reconstruction and development including peacekeeping and humanitarian support in Africa.

Minister will brief Minister Davutoglu on preparations for COP 17 and exchange views on the expected outcomes. Furthermore the Ministers will discuss other global governance issues such as the UN reform (including UNSC) and the G20. Both South Africa and Turkey share common platforms in multilateral forums such as the G20, IAEA and both served (South Africa is serving for the second term) as non-permanent Member of the UNSC

Formal relations between South Africa and Turkey were established in 1991.  Relations between the two countries have grown significantly and there exists potential for further enhancing political and economic cooperation. 

Since the establishment of formal relations, bilateral trade between the two countries has increased. Total trade between South Africa and Turkey showed an upward trend in 2010 and the trade balance was in favour of South Africa. 

  2008 2009 2010
SA Export to Turkey  4, 054 057  2, 207 705 2, 885 496
SA import from Turkey 6, 462 607  2 934 984  2, 048 284
Total bilateral trade 10, 516 664  5, 142 689  4, 933 780

The trade figure excludes the gold export to Turkey.

South Africa’s most important export to Turkey is gold, bituminous hard coal, catalytic converters, and fresh fruits.  Turkey’s most important export products to South Africa are automotives equipment, machinery, sanitary ware, rubber outer tyres for motor vehicle. 

The Turkish economy is the 16th largest in the world and is South Africa’s largest trading partner in Central and Eastern Europe.  The Turkish economy is fast approaching the trillion dollar mark and offers  growth opportunities for trade, investment and technical cooperation which can contribute to the advancement of South Africa’s national priorities.

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


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19 August, 2011

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