Link between South Africa’s global engagements, national interest and domestic priorities; and the plans and strategies of the Department of International Relations and Cooperation

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NATIONAL ASSEMBLY

FOR ORAL REPLY

QUESTION NO: 24 (CO26E)

PUBLISHED IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NO: 1-2013 OF 28 FEBRUARY 2013

Mr A J NYAMBI (ANC-MPUMALANGA) TO ASK THE MINISTER OF INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS AND COOPERATION:

  1. Whether there is a coherent link between South Africa’s global engagements, national interest and domestic priorities; if not, (a) why not and (b) what are her department’s plans and strategies in this regard; if so, what are the relevant details;

  2. whether her department has succeeded and/or is succeeding in aligning the international relations policy to domestic priorities such as job creation, poverty alleviation and others; if not, (a) why not and (b) what are her department’s plans and strategies in this regard; if so, what are the relevant details?

REPLY:

  1. South Africa’s foreign policy is informed by South Africa’s domestic priorities. In this regard, our Department ensures complete alignment with Government’s key Five Priorities, the Medium Term Strategic Framework, Outcome 11 as well as the President’s annual State of the Nation Address. The Department’s Annual Performance Plan (APP) for both 2012-2013 & 2013-2014 has been confirmed by the Department of Performance Monitoring & Evaluation in the Presidency to be fully compliant with Outcome 11. These domestic imperatives encapsulate South Africa’s national interests, they consequently find expression in South Africa’s international engagements through both the multilateral and bilateral work done by DIRCO.

  2. DIRCO has aligned all of the 83 Structured Bilateral mechanisms with foreign countries to focus on South Africa’s national priorities and work continuously at the multilateral level to ensure that global governance institutions are responsive to the needs of developing countries in general and Africa in particular. At the centre of our multilateral engagement is the alleviation of poverty and the promotion of socio-economic development. DIRCO operates in a fast changing and unpredictable environment which places job creation and economic development as core issues for both the developing and developed countries. These realities necessitate that economic diplomacy be at the forefront of our diplomatic endeavours. Training on Economic Diplomacy is currently being rolled-out to all our officials at Head Office and at Missions.

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