Zuma to undertake state visit to Zambia

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Pretoria - President Jacob Zuma is to undertake a state visit to Zambia on Monday to further strengthen and cement the cordial historical bilateral relations between the two countries and peoples.

During the three-day visit, the President will be accompanied by Nompumelelo (MaNtuli) Zuma and a South African delegation of ministers including International Relations and Cooperation, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, Tina Joemat-Pettersson, Performance Monitoring and Evaluation, Collins Chabane and Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi.

According to the Presidency, Zuma will hold talks with President Rupiah Banda. "The two leaders and their delegations are expected to cover various bilateral, regional and multilateral issues."

At a bilateral level, the visit is expected to emphasise the need to further deepen economic relations and trade.

Regional and continental issues under discussion may include sharing and exchanging views on strengthening SADC and the African Union as well as matters affecting the region including Zimbabwe and Madagascar, the Presidency said.

Multilateral issues may cover strategic partnership between the two countries placing emphasis on strengthening coordination in dealing with issues such as the reform of multilateral institutions such as the United Nations Security Council, AU Commission, Bretton Woods Institutions, climate change and others.

According to the Presidency, agreements are scheduled to be signed in the fields of cooperation in energy, geology, mining and mineral beneficiation.

In addition, Memoranda of Understanding are scheduled to be signed, on the areas of Regular Diplomatic Consultations, Trade and Industrial Cooperation, Mineral Resources, Agriculture and Livestock and Health.

During his visit, President Zuma is also scheduled to commission Zambia's biggest agricultural project - the Nakambala sugar plantation at Mazabuka, about 140 km from Lusaka which is a R1.7 billion investment by South African sugar company, Illovo Sugar.

President Zuma will also pay his respects at the graves of national liberation heroes Duma Nokwe, the former ruling party Secretary General and that of its former head of international relations Johnny Makatini.

Zuma will also be accompanied by a business delegation representing 60 companies in the sectors of Energy and Petroleum, ICT, Infrastructure, Financial services, Healthcare, Mining as well as Agro-processing.

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