Media Statement

13 October 2022

Minister Pandor concludes successful Working Visit to Korea and Japan

The Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Dr Naledi Pandor, has today, 13 October 2022, concluded her successful Working Visit to the Republic of Korea and the State of Japan. Minister Pandor visited Seoul from 10-12 October 2022 and Tokyo from 12-13 October 2022.

In Seoul, Minister Pandor and her counterpart, His Excellency Mr Park JIN, co-chaired the inaugural Korea – South Africa Joint Cooperation Commission (JCC). Minister Pandor said the JCC succeeded in revitalising the bilateral relationship between South Africa and Korea at the political, economic, social and technical levels.

Minister Pandor took advantage of her presence in Seoul to interact with the leadership of the Korean business community. The Minister said South Africa remains an attractive investment destination and that the challenges currently facing the world economy required a united international response.

In Tokyo, Minister Pandor co-chaired the Japan-South Africa Partnership Forum with her counterpart, His Excellency Mr Hayashi Yoshimasa. The two Ministers focussed their discussions on the political, economic, social and technical cooperation between South Africa and Japan. The Ministers also exchanged views on regional, global and multilateral issues of mutual interest.

While in Tokyo, Minister Pandor delivered a keynote address at a gathering of Japanese business leaders organised in partnership with the Japan External Trade Organisation (JETRO). Entitled “Unlocking Africa’s potential through the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA)”, the Minister’s speech focussed on, among other things:

  • The opportunities offered by the AfCFTA in various sectors of the African economy
  • Challenges in the implementation of the AfCTA and how these can be overcome, and
  • The impact of the prevailing geo-political situation, with particular reference to armed conflicts and the post-COVID response.

Minister Pandor said South Africa maintains good bilateral relations with both the Republic of Korea and the State of Japan and that the JCC and the Partnership Forum, respectively, provided opportunities to elevate relations.

From Tokyo, Minister Pandor will join President Cyril Ramaphosa’s delegation on the occasion of the President’s State Visit to Saudi Arabia, which is scheduled for 15-16 October 2022.

ISSUED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS AND COOPERATION

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