SA, Spain to review relations

Sunday, November 11, 2018

The 12th South Africa-Spain Annual Consultations, which serve as the main forum for coordinating bilateral relations between the two countries, kick off in Spain on Monday.

The consultations, which will be co-chaired by Deputy Minister Luwellyn Landers and his counterpart Fernando Martín Valenzuela Marzo, will be an opportunity for South Africa and Spain to strengthen relations on a wide range of issues in bilateral, political and economic matters.  

These consultations will focus on key working group areas such as foreign affairs and human rights, led by the Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO), and economy, energy and culture, led by the Department of Trade and Industry.

“The Spanish government views South Africa as an important and essential role player in Africa and as such, South Africa is the only country in Sub-Saharan Africa with which Spain has a structured bilateral engagement,” DIRCO said.

Bilateral relations between the two countries are serviced through the South Africa-Spain Annual Consultations held at Deputy Ministerial level and anchored through a Memorandum of Understanding signed in 2000.

On the trade front, Spain is one of South Africa’s major trading partners in the European Union.

In 2016, the overall volume of trade amounted to R32.3 billion, with imports amounting to R19.5 billion and exports amounting to R12.8 billion.

There are 100 Spanish companies that have invested in South Africa and they are estimated to have created over 12 000 jobs largely in renewable energy and metals sectors. –