His Excellency President Jacob Zuma has today 20 October 2010 concluded a highly successful State Visit to the Arab Republic of Egypt. Hosted by his counterpart His Excellency President Hosni Mubarak, President Zuma led a delegation of six ministers, three deputy ministers, senior government officials and a business entourage of more than a hundred business people.
During the State Visit, President Zuma held talks with President Mubarak where they expressed satisfaction at the progress that had been made to strengthen these relations over the past few years.
Both Presidents recognized the role of the Joint Bilateral Commission in providing a strategic platform for focusing efforts to bring about closer collaboration on issues of mutual interest, including expanding trade and investments in Africa, reform of the multilateral institutions and peaceful resolution of all conflict and in the Middle East in particular. South Africa also shares with Egypt the desire to see the eradication of poverty, promotion of sustainable development as well as the attainment of peace and stability within the African continent.
Presidents Zuma and Mubarak took special note of the progress reported by their Foreign Ministers following the 8th Session of the Joint Bilateral Commission, held in South Africa in March 2010.
The conclusion of the following agreements and programmes of action were also noted during the visit:
Ø Memorandum of Understanding on Information and Communication Technologies
Ø Memorandum of Understanding on Co-operation in the field of the Environment;
Ø Memorandum of Understanding concerning Co-operation in the Petroleum (oil and gas) Sector;
Ø Memorandum of Understanding on Bilateral Co-operation in the Fields of Veterinary and Health Services;
Ø Protocol of Action on Bilateral Co-operation in the fields of Sport and Recreation for the years 2010-2015;
Ø Memorandum of Understanding between the Bibliotheca Alexandrina and the National Library of the Republic of South Africa;
Ø Executive Programme on Tourism Co-operation.
President Zuma and his counterpart further discussed issues affecting the African continent such as development, conflict, disease as well as issues of global concern such as climate change and international trade.
A successful South Africa/Egypt Business Forum was held on the margins of the visit, where Egypt has asked support from the South African government to help in their efforts to form a proposed African free trade area, in terms of which they would combine the regional trading markets of all five African regions to form a common market economic from Cape to Cairo.
Similarly, President Zuma imparted the message to businesspeople to increase investments in each other’s economies so that there would be greater volumes of trade and growing levels of investments.
Enquiries: Zizi Kodwa on 082 330 4910 or Saul Molobi on 082 940 1647
Issued by the Presidency and the Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO).