SA, Russia hold trade co-operation talks

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

International Relations and Cooperation Minister Lindiwe Sisulu will today co-chair the 15th session of the annual South Africa-Russia Intergovernmental Committee on Trade and Economic Co-operation (ITEC) during a working visit to the east European country. 

Sisulu will chair the meeting with the Russian Minister of Natural Resources and Environment, Dmitry Kobylkin. 

The one-day 15th ITEC meeting is a result of a bilateral agreement that was signed in 1999 and revived in 2002 with the objective of broadening and deepening relations between the two countries, the Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO) said in a statement. 

Today’s meeting will focus on investment, trade, banking cooperation, mineral resources, agriculture, justice, forestry and fisheries, water resources, science, technology and space, as well as higher education. 

The main focus of the South African delegation is to build partnership and identify investment opportunities to grow the country’s economy and create jobs. 

“We are putting all our efforts in supporting President Ramaphosa’s investment drive to reach a target of $100 billion as soon as possible. Russia and South Africa have deep diplomatic and historic ties. We believe there is more that can be done in trade; we can export a number of our agricultural products.  We can also build partnerships on water and agricultural technology, and education and skills development,” Sisulu said. 

During the recent 10th BRICS Summit in Johannesburg, the two countries signed two agreements/memoranda on co-operation in the fields of agriculture and water resources. 

During today’s visit, Sisulu is expected to hold a bilateral meeting with her Russian counterpart, Sergey Lavrov. 

“Minister Sisulu will also lay wreaths at the Cenotaphs of the late veterans and freedom fighters, Mr Moses Kotane and Mr JB Marks. The two heroes were buried in Moscow and have since been repatriated and reburied in South Africa,” DIRCO said. 

Before returning to South Africa, Sisulu will also deliver a lecture on South Africa’s foreign policy at the Moscow State Institute of International Relations. 

She is accompanied by the Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry, Bulelani Magwanishe and senior officials from the Departments of Trade and Industry, Mineral Resources, Science and Technology, Water and Sanitation, Communications, Transport, Justice, and Mineral Resources. –