15 March 2013
President Zuma congratulates China's new President
On behalf of the Government and the people of South Africa, His Excellency President Jacob Zuma has congratulated His Excellency Xi Jinping on his election to the position of President of the People's Republic of China.
President Zuma said: "South Africa congratulates the Communist Party of China for the successful completion of its 18th Party Congress, and for electing Vice President Xi Jinping as new party leader. South Africa looks foward to consolidating its strong relations with the People's Republic of China under the leadership of President Xi Jinping."
China is South Africa’s biggest trading partner and a significant investor in the South African economy. In 2012, total trade stood at R201 billion, according to the South African Revenue Service.
Both sides have agreed to work towards a more equitable trade balance so that both nations benefit from the trade. In this regard, a Joint Working Group on Trade Statistics under the Bi-National Commission (BNC) was established to address the trade imbalance.
The visit by China's new President to South Africa, scheduled to coincide with the 5th BRICS Summit, will be among the first he will be undertaking to Africa since assuming Office. South Africa views this visit as further manifestation of the ever closer relations between Africa and China.
Enquiries: Mr Clayson Monyela, 082 884 5974
ISSUED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS AND COOPERATION