South Africa and Tanzania commit to greater economic cooperation
The Republic of South Africa and the United Republic of Tanzania have committed to deepen and strengthen economic ties through expanded trade and investment with a goal of achieving decent livelihoods in both countries.
President Cyril Ramaphosa and his Tanzanian counterpart, President John Pombe Magufuli, have agreed to work together to ensure economic growth and advance peace and stability in the two countries.
President Cyril Ramaphosa undertook his first State Visit since being elected President in May 2019 to the United Republic of Tanzania from 14 to 15 August 2019.
The President completed his visit to Tanzania – where he also attended 39th Ordinary Summit of SADC Heads of State and Government – today, Sunday 18 August 2019.
During their bilateral discussions, the Presidents Ramaphosa and Magufuli exchanged views on bilateral, continental and global issues. The leaders reaffirmed their commitment to cooperate more closely on multilateral issues.
On bilateral economic relations, President Ramaphosa said: “I firmly believe that much can still be achieved to further expand our cooperation, particularly in sectors such as energy, mining development, mineral beneficiation, economic infrastructure, tourism, agro-processing, education and healthcare.”
He also encouraged the enhancement of cultural exchanges in order to promote people-to-people relations.
The Heads of State agreed that the second session of the South Africa-Tanzania Binational Commission would be hosted in South Africa in 2019 on a date to be agreed.
The leaders also noted with satisfaction the coming into effect of the Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) – an ambitious initiative to accelerate intracontinental trade and advance economic integration.
Addressing the South Africa-Tanzania Business Forum, the two leaders called on their respective business communities to work together to achieve inclusive growth and development.
To promote rapid industrialisation and development, they agreed on the need to enhance the ease of doing business in the two countries.
President Ramaphosa said: “South Africa is ready and prepared to craft a new partnership model with Tanzania, where government and business work together to clear the way for more investment to flow between our two countries”.
During his State Visit President Ramaphosa also undertook a visit to Morogoro where he visited and toured the Soikone University of Agriculture’s Solomon Mahlangu Campus (formerly known as the Solomon Mahlangu Freedom College – SOMAFCO).
The college situated in Mazimbu was established by the exiled ANC in 1978 and provided educational and vocational skills to young South Africans who had fled South Africa after the 1976 Soweto uprising.
The President's visit to Morogoro was the first by a sitting President of the Republic of South Africa and coincided with the 50th Anniversary of the African National Congress’s Morogoro Consultative Conference convened under the stewardship of President Oliver Tambo. It was this Consultative Conference that adopted the Strategy and Tactics document, which determined the direction of the ANC's struggle against the apartheid regime for several decades.
President Ramaphosa said: “We return here because we desire – like the people of this area and all the people of Tanzania – to see this as a place of development, of commerce, of learning and of prosperity. We want this place to have a future that is as glorious as its past. That is why we are greatly encouraged by initiatives like the SOMAFCO Future Africa Precinct, which aims to remember and celebrate our past while investing in infrastructure and economic opportunities that make a tangible difference in the lives of the people of this area.”
During this engagement in Morogoro, President Ramaphosa expressed his heartfelt condolences to the families and the people of Tanzania following the 10 August 2019 fuel tanker explosion in the area that led to the deaths of more than 70 people.
The President said: “We wish the families of those who have lost their loved ones strength as they go through this valley of darkness, as they come to terms with their loss but we also wish those who are still in the hospital a good recovery.”
Following his State Visit, President Ramaphosa led the South African delegation to the 39th Ordinary Summit of SADC Heads of State and Government held under the theme “A Conducive Business Environment for Inclusive and Sustainable Industrial Development”.
The Summit was held from 17-18 August 2019 at the Julius Nyerere International Convention Centre in the Tanzanian capital Dar es Salaam.
The theme was in line with previous SADC Summit decisions that endorsed industrialisation as the overarching priority for the region based on the SADC Industrialisation Strategy and Roadmap (2015-2063).
The Summit provided an opportunity for Heads of State and Government to be apprised on the overall implementation of the SADC work programme, including the Revised Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan (2015-2020) and the SADC Industrialisation Strategy and Roadmap.
The Summit was also updated on the status of the region's economy, health, and food security and provided policy direction about future strategic work of SADC and the SADC post 2020 Agenda.
President Ramaphosa highlighted the importance of regional economic integration and further emphasised the need to work towards the advancement of economic integration as envisaged by the SADC Industrialisation Strategy and for the promotion and advancement of the Public-Private sector partnerships.
During the SADC Troika Summit of the Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Cooperation, in his capacity as the SADC facilitator to the Kingdom of Lesotho, President Ramaphosa presented a final report on the facilitation process to the SADC Heads of State.
Presenting his report, the President noted with great appreciation progress made towards the implementation of the reforms required for transformation in the mountain kingdom.
He commended the passing of enabling legislation for the establishment of the National Reforms Authority which is entrusted with implementing the decisions of the National Dialogue and the reform processes.
President Ramaphosa was supported by Retired Deputy Chief Justice Dikgang Moseneke and thanked him and his support team for their dedication and commitment.
The President further expressed gratitude to international partners, notably, the European Union Delegation Office to Lesotho, the United Nations Development Programme in Maseru and Tanzania retired Justice Frederick Werema, Chairperson of the SADC Oversight Committee on Lesotho for their support and assistance provided to him.
President Ramaphosa has congratulated President Magufuli on assuming the Chairmanship of SADC and is certain that under his leadership “our regional organisation, our region will continue to prosper under (his) esteemed and capable leadership”.
The President has also congratulated President Magafuli on Kiswahili being adopted as the 4th official language of communication of the SADC, in addition to English, French and Portuguese.
The next SADC Summit will take place in Maputo, Mozambique in August 2020.
President Ramaphosa congratulates Ms Sasha Maria Schwendenwein, Producer at Carte Blanche for her SADC Media Awards entry which won second prize in the TV category.
South Africa received an award during the SADC Summit on a story called “Follow the Guns” which is about the illegal trade of weapons used for the poaching of endangered rhinos.
The President was accompanied by the Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Ms Naledi Pandor; the Minister of Defence and Military Veterans, Ms Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula; Minister of Tourism, Ms Mmamoloko Kubayi Ngubane and Minister of Finance, Mr Tito Mboweni