Iraq (Republic of)

History of Relations | Diplomatic Representation | Travel Info | Health Requirements | Climate Info | Currency Info | Trade Info | Visits and Meetings | Agreements | Interest Groups/ Organisations

History of Relations

Iraq established its diplomatic relations with South Africa in August 1998.

An Iraqi government delegation that included the Iraqi Deputy President attended South Africa’s first Presidential inauguration in Pretoria during 1994. During October 1995 an official Iraqi delegation attended the UNCTAD Conference in South Africa. During the visit, informal discussions were held with the desk.The first official visit to Iraq by a South African delegation took place during November1996. During the visit meetings were held with various Iraqi Ministers, including Foreign Minister Al-Sahaf. The delegation also visited Kuwait, Jordan and the Arab League in order to consult on South Africa’s approach to relations with Baghdad. The Iraqi authorities were informed that South Africa wanted to normalize its relations with Kuwait, including the establishment of a diplomatic mission in Kuwait City.The Iraqi Deputy President, Mr Taha Yassin Ramadan, Foreign Minister Mr Al-Sahaf as well as the Senior Under Secretary, Mr Nizar Hamdoun, attended the NAM Conference that was held in Durban during September 1998. During the conference, Deputy President Mbeki met with Mr Taha Yassin Ramadan. Diplomatic relations with Iraq were concluded during November 1998 by means of an exchange of notes through our respective missions in New York.

Deputy Minister Pahad led the first significant business delegation consisting of 30 South African companies to Iraq during November 1999. During the visit, Deputy Minister Pahad held bilateral discussions with the Deputy President of Iraq, Mr Taha Yassin Ramadan, the Deputy Prime Minister, Mr Tariq Aziz, the Ministers of Foreign Affairs, Oil, Trade, Industry, and Health and Senior Under Secretary for Foreign Affairs, Mr Nizar Hamdoun. In addition he also met with the UN Humanitarian Coordinator for Iraq, Mr Hans von Sponeck, and the Head of the ICRC.

Most recently Deputy Minister Pahad visited Iraq and the region in April 2001. Discussions were held with, inter alia, Deputy Prime Minister Mr Tariq Aziz and the Senior Deputy Minister for Oil, Mr Hamad. There was an agreement to encourage South African private sector companies and State Enterprises to get involved in a significant way with the United Nations ‘Oil for Food Program’ and the general reconstruction of the Iraqi economy and infrastructure which has been severely hit by ten years of UN sanctions.

Diplomatic Representation

South African Representation in Iraq

Currently there is no South African residential diplomatic representation in Iraq. The South African Embassy in Jordan is responsible for relations with Iraq.

H E Mr E M Saley
Ambassador Extraordinary & Plenipoteniary

South African Embassy

Iraqi Representation in South Africa

In 2001 Iraq upgraded its representation in South Africa to the rank of the Ambassador.

H E Mr A O Esmaeel
Ambassador Extraordinary & Plenipoteniary

Embassy of the Republic of Iraq

Travel Info

Visa requirements for South Africans

For more information contact the Iraqi Embassy in Pretoria.

Health Requirements

Malaria risk between May and November: Prophylactic may be required. Hepatitis A and B immunisation is recommended. Tetanus immunisation is recommended for rural travel. Typhoid is present in certain areas.

For further information go to Travelers' Health.

Climate Info

Dry and hot in the summer and warm winters with some rain.

For up-to-date weather information click here

Currency Info

The monetary unit is the Iraqi Dinar. US Dollars are useful for visitors but due to the economic embargo the Iraqi Dinar is not pegged to international exchange rates.

For current exchange rates click here.

State and Official Visits / Bilateral Meetings

No Information

Bilateral Agreements

If you have any queries with regard to treaties please contact the Treaty Section of the Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO) at 012 351 1000.

Trade Statistics

For current information on trade statistics between South Africa and Iraq, visit the website of the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition of South Africa.

Interest Groups and Information

No Information

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