Moscow Declaration of the XII BRICS Summit adopted

18 November 2020

On 17 November, Vladimir Putin, President of the Russian Federation, chaired the XII BRICS Summit under the theme “BRICS Partnership for Global Stability, Shared Security and Innovative Growth” via videoconference.

The Summit saw the presence of President of Brazil Jair Bolsonaro, Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi, President of the People’s Republic of China Xi Jinping and President of South Africa Cyril Ramaphosa.

French Companies ready to participate in 3rd South Africa Investment Conference

Mr Franck Riester, Minister Delegate for Foreign Trade and Economic Attractiveness of France met with key players in the new technologies and creative & cultural industries during his recent visit to South Africa.
 

17 November 2020

French companies are ready to participate in the third South Africa Investment Conference (SAIC) and the country’s economic recovery plan amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

President Cyril Ramaphosa will host the third SAIC on Tuesday, 17 and Wednesday, 18 November 2020. Due to the global impact of COVID-19, this year’s conference takes place in a completely different and even more challenging environment than last year.

Happy 245th Birthday US Marines

16 November 2020

A formal ball has been a tradition in celebrating the birthday of the United States Marine Corps since 1925. This year in Pretoria, due to restrictions imposed to curb the Covid-19 pandemic, the ball could not take place. However the pomp and pageantry was still present at the 245th birthday event hosted by Lana Marks, Ambassador of the United States to South Africa.

The US Marine Corps was established on 10 November 1775 and in 1952 celebrations were standardised and formalised. In Pretoria the cake was deftly cut with a sword by Lieutenant-General Cox and after offering a piece to the host, Ambassador Marks, the oldest Marine passed the slice on to the youngest Marine as per tradition.

Bizana Pondo Chiefs FC crowned the champs of the ABC Motsepe League National playoffs

By Stella Sigcau

16 November 2020

Bizana Pondo Chiefs FC beat Pretoria Callies during the finals of the ABC Motsepe League National playoffs held on the 14 November 2020 at the Vaal University of Technology in Gauteng. They were crowned the champions of the tournament and the Mayor of Mbizana Cllr TD Mafumbatha was present to witness this historic moment. Present were also the founder and Chairman of the club Nathi Mqokiyana, George Gusha and Clive Noconjo from Mbizana Municipality and Sikelela Mtangayi from SAFA Alfred Nzo region who is also the organiser of the Nkosi Ntsikayezwe Sigcau Soccer Tournament.

17th ASEAN-India Summit: Reorientation of Strategic Diplomacy

By Dr Srimal Fernando

13 November 2020

The 17th ASEAN-India summit has taken India’s relations with the 10-nation Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) to a whole new level, reinforcing cooperation across multiple sectors. On Thursday, 12 November 2020, the Indian Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi had the honor of co-chairing, the historic 17th ASEAN-India virtual summit along with his Vietnamese counterpart Nguyen Xuan Phuc.

Speaking at the virtual Summit Modi emphasized that there are many similarities between India's 'Indo Pacific Oceans Initiative' and ASEAN's 'Outlook on Indo Pacific'.

Unprecedented Egyptian Economic Successes Attained under President Al Sisi

Photo: President Al-Sisi at the inauguration of the Egyptian Petroleum Refining Company in Mostorod

by Ayman Walash, Counselor - Head of the Press & Information Office, Embassy of the Arab Republic of Egypt in Pretoria, South Africa

11 November 2020

Throughout its history, Egypt has witnessed various challenges and conflicts that have, more or less, contributed in undermining the development process and has also been very keen on overcoming them to cope with the regional and international changes taking advantage of its unique geographic location which has played a pivotal role in the process of development. Perhaps, what Egypt experienced in 2011 is the most striking evidence on that; after the economic problems were stockpiled, a new vision emerged to put a decisive end for these problems as of 2013. This is in addition to the economic reform programs, which are completely different from the previous ones, these programs were focused on tackling the root causes of the problems and threats besides working on realizing the future with all its tools.

After Record Season, the United States Opens New Ports to South African Citrus Exports

(Image: pixabay.com)

9 November 2020

The United States government has announced the opening up of several new ports for the import for citrus products from South Africa, further facilitating two-way trade with South Africa.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service published a final notice in the U.S. Federal Register on November 5th approving the use of additional ports options for South African citrus growers. Previously, the South African citrus industry was limited to the use of only four ports and had long sought access to other U.S. ports. With this announcement, exports will be allowed to any U.S. port that has cold storage facilities, including the strategically important ports of Charleston, South Carolina and Savannah, Georgia.

South Africa joins the ASEAN family

By Salman Al Farisi

9 November 2020

South Africa and Indonesia share a long history, brought together by a common struggle against oppression. Confronted by Dutch invaders both our countries fought the viciousness of slavery, colonialism and apartheid.

History documents that since the mid-17th century, Indonesian slaves at the Cape fought shoulder-to-shoulder with other Asian and African slaves. There is also scholarly work showing how political prisoners from Indonesia may have inspired South Africans to fight against colonial and apartheid forces.

Of course, another key moment in South Africa’s relationship with Indonesia is the 1955 Bandung Conference hosted by President Sukarno. South Africa was among 29 African and Asian countries that attended. South African anti-apartheid activists Molvi Ismail Cachalia and Moses Kotane attended as observers, and presented a memorandum against apartheid, which significantly helped internationalise support for the liberation movement.

Mkhize appointed SADC Elimination 8 chairperson

5 November 2020

Health Minister, Dr Zweli Mkhize, has been appointed as the chairperson of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Elimination 8 Ministers of Health Council.

The Elimination Eight (E8) is a coalition of eight countries working across national borders to eliminate malaria in southern Africa by 2030.

The Minister was elected as the new chair during the SADC E8 Health Ministers' meeting, which took place today.

The E8, which is the malaria response arm of the SADC, aims to end the deadly disease.

According to the E8, the attainment of malaria elimination requires bold and decisive policy action to prioritise national resources, to engage in diplomatic negotiation and negotiate terms of data sharing with neighbouring countries.

Strong Partnership between France and SA Reaffirmed

Photo: French Minister Delegate for Foreign Trade and Economic Attractiveness, Mr. Franck Riester, met with South African Deputy Minister of International Relations and Cooperation Mr. Alvin Botes to discuss bilateral relations & shared commitment in favour of multilateralism.
 

4 November 2020

French Minister for Foreign Trade and Economic Attractiveness, Mr Franck Riester, reaffirmed France’s commitment to stand by South Africa in these challenging times and to support mutual economic partnerships with South Africa during his official three-day visit.

Minister Riester was the first foreign minister to visit South Africa (2 to 4 November 2020) since the reopening of the borders.

As a key partner within the G20 and the United Nations, but also as chair of the African Union until January 2021, South Africa has been a key partner for France in the fight against the pandemic. This visit sends a strong message of support and solidarity to Africa, following the initiatives taken by President Emmanuel Macron and President Cyril Ramaphosa since the start of the crisis.

Preparation set to drive Infrastructure SA project

Photo: South African President Cyril Ramaphosa addressing the opening of the Infrastructure South Africa (ISA) Project Preparation Roundtable and Market Place at the Gallagher Convention Centre, Midrand. Seated is Patricia de Lille, Minister of Public Works and Infrastructure (Kopano Tlape, GCIS)

4 November 2020

President Cyril Ramaphosa has highlighted preparation - through the Infrastructure South Africa (ISA) project preparation roundtable - as the key to unlock South Africa’s post COVID-19 economic recovery.

“This roundtable is the beginning of a more dedicated and structured approach to project preparation. It paves the way for greater private sector participation in this crucial stage of the project life-cycle. The South African government is committed to financing project preparation,” he said.

The President delivered the opening address at the ISA project preparation roundtable at the Gallagher Convention Centre in Midrand on Tuesday.

The ISA project preparation roundtable aligns with the first priority President Ramaphosa presented last month at the joint sitting of Parliament on the South African Economic Reconstruction and Recovery Plan.

Promoting tourism within BRICS

Photo: Red Square in Moscow (pixabay.com)

4 November 2020

On 28 October, Zarina Doguzova, Head of the Russian Agency for Tourism, chaired the Meeting of BRICS Tourism Authorities via videoconference.

The meeting saw the presence of India’s Minister of State (Independent Charge) of the Ministry of Tourism Shri Prahlad Singh Patel, China’s Vice Minister of Culture and Tourism Zhang Xu, South Africa’s Deputy Minister of the Department of Tourism Amos Fish Mahlalela and Brazil’s Head of the International Advisory Office of the Ministry of Tourism Antonio Otavio Sa Ricarte.

The main topic for discussion at the meeting was the impact of the current epidemiological situation on the tourism sector in the BRICS countries and in the world. The participants shared their experience in the development and implementation of anti-crisis measures, as well as support and development of the industry.

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