International Cooperation, Trade and Security (ICTS) Cluster response to 2011 State of the Nation Address
21 Feb 2011
The Minister of Defence, Lindiwe Nonceba Sisulu, opened by introducing her colleagues: the Minister of Trade and Industry, Dr Rob Davies, Deputy Minister of International Relations and Cooperation Ebrahim Ismail Ebrahim, Deputy Minister of Energy Ms Barbara Thompson, Director General of International Relations and Cooperation Dr Ayanda Ntsaluba, Acting Director General of Trade and Industry Lionel October and the Secretary of Defence Mpumi Mpofu. Minister Sisulu read through the briefing handed out to members of the media, detailing the ICTS agenda for the upcoming year.
Minister Sisulu stated that the mandate of this Cluster was to support and ensure that
She said South Africa remained committed to the advancement of the African Agenda, and the contribution made by the nation to peace and stability, not only improved the lives of other Africans, but also facilitated South African access to new markets on the continent.
Q: Is the South African government going to condemn the use of lethal force in
A: Deputy Minister E Ebrahim stated that
A: The Minister of Defence was not aware of any sale of sniper-rifles to
Q: What are the details of the progress made by the SAPS along the borders? Could the Ministers also provide an update about the negotiations in
A: It had been reported, the Minister of Defence said, by the SAPS National Commissioner that the deployment to the border had resulted in a reduction in crime. Border communities were reported to be very happy with the deployment, inroads had been made into cutting down crime, including halting car thieves from crossing the border into neighbouring states. The syndicates operating between
A: As for the negotiations in
Q: When is the Drakensberg likely to be out of West Coast waters? Further, how many South Africans are there currently in
A: Deputy Minister Ebrahim did not have any information on how many South Africans where in
Q: Can you mention a little more on the efforts being made to combat piracy, especially by the SS Mendi? And could they say a little about Project Biro?
A: The Secretary of Defence stated that Project Biro dealt with the acquisition of equipment to upgrade land-forces to ensure that the Defence Force had the necessary modern equipment.
Q: Can the Minister elaborate on the process involved in the battling of pirates? If they are encountered by the Navy can they then be engaged in combat?
Q: Could the Minister explain what is going on with the ground based air defence system Phase Two, when will this programme be concluded and what are the final costs? As there is little information to the public, could the Minister please disclose everything she knows about it?
A: The Secretary of Defence explained that the Ground to Air Missile system referred to would have an initial payment cost of R150 million.
Q: With regards to the statements made by Cabinet, what kinds of initiative are being discussed with regards to assisting
A: The Minister of Trade and Industry said the Government had been forced to note that the
A: The Minister of Defence added that an intrusion into SADC waters had been detected on 28 December with the hijacking of a Mozambiquan vessel that contained 28 Mozambiquans and two Spanish sailors. The Mozambiquen government, who lacked naval capacity to deal with this situation, requested aid from the South African government. Due to the memorandum of understanding between the two countries,
Q: Could the Deputy Minister of Energy please explain if the Ministry holds any views on gas exploration in the
A: The Deputy Minister, Ms B Thompson, said that she was not aware of any initiative concerning gas exploration of the
Q: Could the Ministers elaborate on any discussions or solutions to the funding problems with South African officials taking part in AU missions, for whom
A: Deputy Minister Ebrahim said that to his knowledge the government had not been in touch with the Libyan ruling administration. They had been in touch with the South African embassy in the country though to get a comprehensive report of what was taking place there. Communication was not good, but the government was hoping to get information about how many nationals were in
Q: Is military action against the pirates being considered, by the SS Mendi or other forces?
A: Minister Sisulu replied that the SS Mendi was in the
Q: Could the Minister of Trade and Industry comment on the current international trade flows?
A: The Minister, Dr Rob Davies, stated that the currency was moving in the right direction, though it was still volatile and not fully competitive as an exchange rate. These movements he attributed to instabilities in the world economy. He claimed that the world was moving towards recovery, with the so called developed countries being the dynamic forces driving recovery ahead whereas in the developed world there were still enormous problems as of yet unresolved. He went on to say that when one breaks up that pack you would see that leading these countries was
A: The Minister of Defence replied that the investment into the Airbus venture had not yet been recovered. The government had asked Treasury to assist in getting the money back. They hoped to hear from them soon and had given them a deadline of 12 to18 months to live up to the contract. If they had not paid within 18 months, they would see what options were available to them to get the funds back.
Q: What is the Minister of Defence’s wish list for the budget?
A: Minister Sisulu confirmed that the budget was indeed woeful and that they had saved on everything they could possibly save on, to ensure they could get a bigger slice of the budget. They had requested R5 billion extra, taking them from R34 to R39 billion. This was the bare minimum due to more onerous requirements.
Q: Following on the question of AU finances, seeing as
A: Deputy Minister Ebrahim said that in such a hypothetical situation
Q: How active is the South African private sector in
A: Minister Davis said he believed that the South African private sector was highly active on the African continent. During state visits, summits and the like, there was always an effort to expose the private sector to opportunities that existed in these places. He admitted though that the landscape of Africa now saw a greater multiplicity of players involved, and
Q: How is the situation on UN reimbursement, and further what is the serviceability state of South African equipment on UN missions and finally how is the readiness of border security?
A: Minister Sisulu replied that they were still concerned with the serviceability of their forces in the field. However
The media briefing was concluded.
International Cooperation, Trade and Security clsuter (ICTS) media briefing after 2011 State of the Nation Address final speaking notes - Minister of Defence and Military Veterans, Lindiwe Sisulu
22 Feb 2011
Members of the media
We welcome you to this first Ministerial Cluster briefing for 2011. This briefing serves to expand on the announcements made by President Jacob Zuma during his State of the Nation Address on 10 February 2011, as well as to keep all South Africans informed, through you, on progress that has been made as well as plans for the forthcoming year 2011/12.
The mandate of the International Cooperation, Trade and Security (ICTS) cluster is to improve the lives of all South Africans through enhanced trade and investment, regional economic integration, improved technical and scientific cooperation for the creation on much-needed jobs at all times ensuring peace and stability.
Our international agenda is anchored on the goal of creating a better
We seek to assert ourselves on the global stage with a more widely shared African Agenda. An agenda is based on the need for economic growth and development; economic integration at the regional and sub-regional levels; trade and investment; and democratisation and good governance. In this regard, the development and strengthening of the African Union (AU) as a continental body and its structures is of great importance to us. We will continue our active role at continental through the African Union and at regional level as a member of the Southern African Development Community (SADC).
Our various activities as government in the past year were aimed at achieving these objectives. The FIFA Soccer World Cup helped us to market ourselves and the continent as a region of progress, sustainability, peace and development. The hosting this year of COP17 is consistent with this objective.
We also celebrate the successes we have been part of, such as the
We give this briefing as
We firmly believe that peace and security are the prerequisites for economic growth and sustainable development. We thus place strong emphasis on building African multilateral institutions and the African peace and security architecture.
We are, all of us here, required and committed to refocusing our efforts at the urgent priority of creating jobs. This, as the President indicated, will be the central issue at all our budget votes. For now we wish to restate the President’s statement on our cluster responsibilities, plans and successes.
Thus, the work of this cluster in the promotion of peace and stability, co-operation on a range of matters such as scientific and technological advancement and political and economic integration are the fundamental building blocks for economic growth and sustainable development. The work of this cluster therefore remains central in the creation of conditions for enhanced trade, investment and capital flows.
To further promote
The 2010 FIFA World Cup can be defined as the biggest marketing opportunity
Tourism's direct and indirect contribution to the country’s 2009 gross domestic product (GDP) grew by 2.7% to R198.4 billion compared to 2008. This represents 7.4% of GDP. Tourism is a significant source of foreign earnings for the country and can therefore be effectively positioned as one of the ‘export sectors’ of our economy. Figures for 2010 reflect continued growth as well. Tourist arrivals from January to November 2010 was approx 7.3 million arrivals.
Our immigration policy has contributed significantly in creating an environment where visas are not an honorary burden.
We have positioned
Since 1994 when the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) entered into force, Parties to the Convention have met annually at the Conference of Parties (COP). Later this year we will again host
s the world at the 17th Conference of Parties (COP 17/CMP 7) on climate change. As the President indicated, we are humbled by the confidence shown by the UNFCCC in
We have hosted many similar international conferences, ie World Conference Against Racism, the launch of the African Union, etc and we are now becoming quite specialised in these matters.
Once again, as was the case with
If climate change is not addressed, its impact will undermine the developmental gains we have made since 1994 as a country and the progress made by SADC and the African continent to achieve the millennium development goals (MDGs). Climate change is a sustainable development challenge that affects all countries and is not solely an environmental issue. It demands an urgent global agreement that takes into account different historical responsibilities in forging a shared common responsibility for the future.
We are committed to further develop unity of the African Group and a common African position in the multilateral climate change negotiations. In view of the fact that Africa is the continent most affected by Climate Change, it is important that
South Africa and its key allies in Africa, the G77 and China and the BRIC countries – South Africa, India, China and Brazil – call for an inclusive, fair, effective, ambitious and binding climate change deal, which is favourable to both developed and developing countries.
Enhanced African agenda and sustainable development
We firmly believe that peace and security are the prerequisites for economic growth and sustainable development. We thus place strong emphasis on building African multilateral institutions and the African peace and security architecture. The promotion of political and economic integration of the continent also continues to drive the African Agenda.
We remain committed to the advancement of the African Agenda as the President stated in the State of the Nation Address. The development and strengthening of the African Union (AU) as a continental body and its structures is of great importance to
The remarkable contribution we are making to peace and stability on the continent paves the way for economic growth and sustainable development in those areas. Not only does our contribution improve the lives of our fellow Africans, but also facilitates South African access to develop new markets on the continent in the wake of the new possibilities created.
We firmly believe that the deployment of the members of our Defence Force on the continent as part of the UN or the AU, directly provides the opportunity for our entrepreneurs to diversify our trade profile on the continent and our investment in African economies. We call on South African entrepreneurs to take advantage of prevailing opportunities.
Regional integration and SADC
We are committed to the regional integration of SADC and will support efforts to deepen both political and economic integration.
Our economic development can be entrenched by deepening regional economic integration in the Southern African Customs Union (SACU), the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and the wider African continent. This can also promote industrial development and employment creation.
Deeper regional integration in Africa and
Our five priority spatial development initiatives (SDIs) have been identified to be pursued over the medium term strategic framework (MTSF) period, namely: Mozambique SDI Programme Phase (Ph) 2; Tanzania SDI Ph2; DR Congo SDI Ph2; ANSA SDI Ph1; Zimbabwe SDI Ph 1 and the Mtwara corridor in Tanzania which now has investors for implementation. All these infrastructure programmes are important for regional integration and trade. When completed
The Square Kilometre Array (SKA)
We are leading
Hosting the SKA in
The SKA will ensure that both
Securing our borders and SADC security
To facilitate the flow of goods and people and effective management of our borders with our neighbouring countries, the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) has returned to the borders of
Concerns over Somali piracy are also being attended to by the security institutions of our country.
s of cargo within the SADC Maritime Zone. We are working with other defence forces and security agencies of the region to protect our maritime areas for the purpose of smooth trade and movement of goods.
The SANDF has made noticeable achievements since its deployment to the borders. Farmers and business people along the borders have reported a drop in cross border crime, and a number of arrests have been made which have impacted heavily on syndicates trading in illegal goods and vehicle thefts.
The SANDF, in partnership with the South African Police Service (SAPS), are working with law enforcement agencies of the region to investigate and stop cross border crimes.
To ensure safe and secure tourism we have now started deploying on our border along the
s of people and goods and related criminal activities.
Enhancing regional integration and peace
We have committed ourselves to enhancing our contribution to the operationalisation of the SADC Regional Early Warning Centre (REWC). Acceleration of the full operationalisation of the SADC REWC will form an integral part of efforts to prevent and manage conflict situations in the region and the continent.
In the next year we will seek to maintain the readiness of our pledged defence, police and civilian components of the SADC Standby Force as determined in agreements. Renewed focus will be on strengthening our contribution to the civilian component of the SADC Standby Force that is necessary to provide the core support to the civilian Head of Mission.
Not only will we be seeking to enhance our capacity to make this contribution, but we will also strengthen our understanding of the civilian component concept and the development of a strategy in this regard.
The President said that during the coming 2011/12 financial year, we will be deploying a total of 2 240 military personnel in operations across the African continent, namely the Democratic Republic of Congo (1271 personnel), Darfur (850 personnel) and Central African Republic (100 personnel). These deployments are tasked with restoring peace, training, and formalising and developing the security structures of those countries to stabilise and facilitate economic growth and a better life for the citizens.
In addition to these enduring missions, we will continue to provide humanitarian support, disaster relief, election assistance and general military assistance to our continental partners. In the DRC we have also deployed to support the elections. We assist with elections logistics, protection of observers and officials.
2011 marks ten years since the adoption of NEPAD as the AU flagship socio-economic programme in Lusaka in July 2001. South Africa ranks amongst fourteen AU Member States of the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM) which was established in 2003 as a voluntary instrument to ensure efficient delivery of services to the peoples of the continent, and promoting good democratic governance and economic and corporate governance.
Reform of global governance institutions
We remain committed to the reform of institutions of global governance, including the comprehensive reform of the UN which includes the expansion of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC). Our membership of the Security Council presents an opportunity to contribute to reforming the working methods of the Council and to work towards the achievement of a representative, legitimate and more effective Council.
We are greatly honoured to join the BRICS forum. It is an important bloc of emerging economies.
We look forward to the inaugural meeting of BRICS on 14 - 15 April in China through BRICS we will continue with existing collaboration in various international organisations and formations such as the UN, the Group of 20 (G20) and IBSA.
In the coming years we are committed to deploying/seconding South Africans into strategic positions in strategic regional, continental and global governance institutions according to determined modalities. Over the next years we will be striving to meet the geographical quota available in the UN system and meet the assessed quota available in SADC and the AU. To do this, we will in the medium-term develop a national secondment strategy to operationalise the implementation of the National Secondment Policy, revise the National Secondment Policy and develop a database of possible posts and candidates that South Africa can deploy into or put forward as candidates.
Diplomacy in the continent
The President already said that we welcome the successfully concluded referendum and support the activities of the AU in the post-conflict reconstruction and development of Sudan. Despite the successful conclusion of the referendum, remaining challenges must be addressed to ensure smooth transition. Our troops remain committed to their current operations as part of our efforts to maintain peace and stability on the African continent.
The strong political relations that exist between South Africa and the people of Southern Sudan have cultivated a positive environment for the greater involvement of the South African private sector in the region’s economic development. There is a growing presence of South African businesses in Southern Sudan, namely:
SABMiller has built a US$ 30 million brewery in Southern Sudan which has been functional for over a year. The brewery is one of the biggest investments in that region by an outside country. South African consulting engineers (KV3) are managing the refurbishment of government buildings, such as the Juba Hospital. Arelco has been appointed on a project basis to lead livestock development in Southern Sudan and MTN also has investments in the region.
Given that Southern Sudan is given independence on 11 July 2011, it is important to identify commercial opportunities and establish an early footprint in Southern Sudan, ahead of our competitors.
Key sectors to be pursued in Sudan include agriculture, minerals and energy, infrastructure development and management, information and communications technology (ICT) and telecoms, water purification and supply, forestry and banking. South African business must take advantage of these opportunities.
We must emphasize that the ICTS cluster’s responsibility is to facilitate peace and stability on the continent and by so doing stimulate growth, jobs; fight poverty and under-development. A peaceful and stable Africa is central for growth, job creation and economic development.
Cell: 079 462 5081
Issued by: Government Communications (GCIS)
22 Feb 2011
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