Zuma in Zambia to strengthen co-operation
PRESIDENT Jacob Zuma has arrived on a two-day state visit to Zambia to see President Edgar Lungu.
Prior to Zuma’s arrival, International Relations and Co-operation Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane arrived in Lusaka on Wednesday to co-chair the second session of the Joint Commission for Co-operation (JCC) with her Zambian counterpart, Harry Kalaba, of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The agreement to establish a Joint Commission for the operationalisation of the 1996 General Agreement was signed on October 18, 2005. The JCC was inaugurated in Pretoria on December 7 last year.
The JCC is a structured bilateral mechanism which meets annually and avails an opportunity for the two countries to deepen co-operation and to furthermore explore new areas of mutual benefit.
There is a standing mid-term review under the JCC which monitors and ensures the implementation of decisions and signed agreements.
The areas of co-operation between the two countries cover a wide scope of fields which among others are in agriculture, energy, mineral resources, trade, finance and defence.
New areas of co-operation are being explored and a memorandum of understanding will be initiated in these areas, namely, ICT, broadcasting, higher and basic education, youth affairs, sport and recreation, small business development, public works, and local government. Co-operation between the two countries has been growing.
To date, more than 20 agreements have been signed between the two countries. Bilateral trade between South Africa and Zambia has increased substantially since 1994.
Total exports to Zambia last year amounted to R30.5 billion and total imports from Zambia amounted to R2.7bn, thus firmly placing Zambia among South Africa’s top three trading partners on the continent. – ANA
President Jacob Zuma lays a wreath at the Presidential Memorial Embassy Park in Lusaka in memory of the late heads of state of that country during his state visit.