Media Statement

09 January 2018

Minister Nkoana-Mashabane concludes her successful visit to Rabat

The Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Hon. Maite Nkoana-Mashahane, has concluded her successful visit to Rabat, Kingdom of Morocco, where she led a South African Government delegation at the African Union's (AU) Ministerial Conference on Migration, which took place on 09 January 2018.

King Mohammed VI of Morocco was designated by the current Chair of the AU, HE Alpha Condé, President of the Republic of Guinea, as the AU lead on the issue of migration. The King is expected to submit a comprehensive report on the subject on the occasion of the forthcoming 30th AU Summit to be held at the end of January 2018 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

Speaking at the conference, Minister Nkoana-Mashabane said: “Migration offers major potential opportunities to Africa, provided that it is well managed and coordinated. As recognised in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and as envisaged in the AU’s own texts, including Agenda 2063, migrants make a clear and positive contribution to inclusive growth and sustainable development, in particular when they move, not out of desperation but out of choice.”

The Minister further said: “South Africa recognises that political instability and the quest for better socioeconomic habitation are but two key drivers of the displacement of people.  We also recognise that there cannot be economic prosperity and sustainable development without peace on the Continent. Therefore, concerted regional, continental and global efforts to address the questions of underdevelopment and armed conflict should be a central focus of all Member States.”

The Minster also commented on Morocco’s membership of the African Union. She said: “We are pleased that Morocco has returned home to the African Union fold.  It is our hope that Morocco’s return will enable the dialogue necessary to assist us to resolve the outstanding issue of Western Sahara in accordance with the principles of international law, including the United Nations and the AU.”

Minister Nkoana-Mashabane held bilateral talks on the sidelines of the conference with her Moroccan counterpart, Minister Nasser Bourita. The two ministers discussed a range of issues of mutual interest and concern, and agreed on the need for further dialogue.

Enquiries: Mr Clayson Monyela, 082 884 5974

ISSUED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS AND COOPERATION

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