Closing Remarks by H.E. President Jacob Gedleyihlekisa Zuma at the conclusion of Heads of State and Economic Bilateral, Windhoek, Namibia 4 November 2010

Your Excellency, My Dear Brother, Comrade President Hifikepunye Pohamba;
Honourable Ministers and Deputy Ministers;
Your Excellencies, High Commissioners of the Republic of South Africa and Namibia;
Senior Officials;
Ladies and gentlemen;

On behalf of my delegation let me convey our most profound gratitude to you, Mr President, the Government and the people of Namibia for the fruitful meeting we have just concluded. I want to thank you personally for your wise leadership, the amity and sincere commitment you have shown to the development of ties of friendship between our two countries and peoples.

Mr President, we depart with a clear conscience that the future is bright not only for us but for future generations. I say this motivated by the commitment and dedication that both our delegations have displayed in response to the clarion call to fight poverty and underdevelopment.
In our discussions, we have recognised the benefit of diversifying our economies, of developing supply-side capacity and adopting policies that result in growth and job creation.

We have noted progress in various initiatives, which, amongst others, will enhance tourism industry and trade flows thereby increasing our revenue streams.

I would also like to highlight the fruitful discussions we had on the Trans Kalahari Rail project.

The importance of this project in the development of infrastructure cannot be emphasised as it will support intra-regional trade as well as the movement of goods, services and people.

Likewise, the progress reported on our co-operation in developing the Trans-Kunene Spatial Development Initiative to promote trade and tourism represents a major advance in our efforts to facilitate cross-border trade.

In addition we have agreed to a package of enhanced cooperation on issues related to the preservation of environment in particular;
Marine and Coastal Management, Transport and Communication, Agriculture, Energy, Science and Technology; Trade and issues relating to our region’s integration.

I am also pleased that in giving meaning to the strategic nature of our bilateral relations we have agreed to broaden and reconfigure our High Level Interaction to a full-fledge Binational Commission (BNC) at Heads of State level meeting once a year; and covering a full spectrum of issues of mutual concern.

In this regard, our respective Ministers responsible for the coordination of the BNC will soon sign an agreement laying the legal framework for this important instrument.

We need to fast track the implementation of the agreed projects and programmes for the benefit of our people.
We hope that all outstanding Agreements will be finalised and relevant departments and institutions will treat this matter with the utmost urgency.

Mr. President, on behalf of my delegation allow me to take this opportunity to thank you once again for the productive deliberations we had this morning which as usual were conducted in a cordial and friendly atmosphere.

I thank you.

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