Congratulatory Remarks by the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs,
the honourable Ms Sue van der Merwe on the Occasion of the Fourteenth Anniversary
of German Re-Unification, Pretoria, 4 October 2004
Ambassador Harro Adt
Excellencies and Members of the Diplomatic Corps
allow me the honour, on behalf of the Government and the people of the Republic
of South Africa, to congratulate the Government and people of the Federal Republic
of Germany on the occasion of the 14th Anniversary of German Reunification.
reunification of the "Bundesrepublic Deutshland" and the "Deutshe
Demokratishe Republiek" in 1990, following the events on the evening of November
9, 1989 in Berlin when the wall that divided East and West was brought down, marked
the beginning of a new era in world politics.
The subsequent international
developments, including those in our own country, presented the world with opportunities
to break down the barriers of the past to promote peace, co-operation and a better
life to all.
This year, as you know, we are celebrating ten years of our
democracy. The similarity in both our countries' attainment of freedom and both
our nation's achievements in reconciliation, nation-building and social justice
is significant and testimony to the character of our two peoples.
the world order has, once again, changed dramatically! We are faced with very
different challenges and many uncertainties. On the African continent and further
afield, South Africa is committed to the goal of playing a meaningful role in
creating a better world for all. In this regard, we are grateful for the excellent
relationship that we have with your country and for the mutually beneficial partnership
that has developed between our two countries since 1994. Germany's support at
various fora for NEPAD's objectives is much appreciated. We are now at the implementation
phase and we know that we can count on our friendship and partnership with the
people of the Federal Republic of Germany for your support in our efforts to make
our vision of an African Renaissance a reality.
As you are aware, the SA-German
Binational Commission took place from 30 to 31 October 2003 in Pretoria and provided
us with the opportunity to take stock of the co-operation between our two counties
and what has been achieved to date. This forum has so far been an excellent mechanism
to promote our mutual interests and to enhance co-operation in several areas.
As partners from very different parts of the world, SA and Germany are in an ideal
position to jointly confront the challenges of our time in a responsible manner,
whether a bilateral or a multilateral nature.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
congratulate today a unified Germany and salute the courage that the German people
had to join hands and to seek joint solutions to the mutual challenges they were
facing. Germany is one of South Africa's most important trade and investment partners
internationally and the relations continue to grow. We look forward to jointly
build on existing ties and to further strengthen our strong bond of friendship.
I now propose a toast to celebrate the 14th anniversary of the German Reunification
and the future of good co-operation between our two countries.