South African and French Ministers Strengthen Bilateral Cooperation

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On June 19, 2023, the South African Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Dr. Naledi Pandor, welcomed the French Minister, Ms. Catherine Colonna, for a Working Visit with the aim of strengthening the bilateral cooperation between the two nations. The visit provided a platform for both Ministers to engage in profound discussions on topics of mutual interest, covering regional and international matters.

Cooperation on Cyber Forensic Investigations and the Fight against Corruption

During the visit, the South African Minister of Justice and Correctional Services, Mr. Ronald Lamola, and French Minister Colonna signed a Protocol on Cooperation concerning Cyber Forensic investigations and the Fight against Corruption. This agreement is a testament to the close collaboration and commitment between the two nations in battling cybercrime and corruption.

Robust Partnership across Various Sectors

South Africa and France have a strong partnership across various sectors, both at national and regional levels. These sectors include energy, science and technology, defense, trade and investment, arts and culture, tourism, higher education and training, and health. This cooperation has led to significant benefits for both countries, reinforcing their shared interests and values.

French Investment in South Africa

France has been a significant investor in South Africa, with its firms creating nearly 100,000 jobs and offering vocational training opportunities in various fields. French companies have been instrumental in maintaining and extending the Koeberg Nuclear Power Station, which plays a crucial role in ensuring South Africa’s energy security.

France’s Support for South Africa’s Investment Conferences

In recent years, France has demonstrated unwavering support for South Africa’s Investment Conferences. In 2019, a commitment of R20 billion was made and fully invested by 2021. Furthermore, France pledged an additional R50 billion in 2022, highlighting its confidence in South Africa’s economic potential.

Trade between South Africa and France

France is South Africa’s 12th largest source of imports, with 2022 figures reaching R34.2 billion. In contrast, South Africa ranks as the 27th largest export destination for France, with 2022 exports valued at R13.4 billion. The primary products traded between the two nations include minerals, vehicles, vegetables, iron/steel products, chemicals, machinery, and prepared foods.

Shared Passion for Arts and Culture

South Africa and France share a passion for arts and culture, with their partnership fostering numerous exchanges and collaborations in the creative industries. Joint initiatives in the fields of higher education, training, and health have positively impacted the lives of their citizens and contributed to mutual development.

Commitment to Enhance Collaboration

The Working Visit solidified the commitment of both nations to enhance their collaboration, address shared challenges, and seize opportunities for their mutual benefit. As global partners, South Africa and France will continue to work together in pursuit of peace, stability, and prosperity across various sectors, reaffirming the importance of international cooperation in today’s rapidly changing world.

Strong Bonds Between South Africa and France

While the visit concluded with a joint media briefing by both Ministers, it’s evident that the bonds between South Africa and France remain strong, promising continued collaboration and future growth. The importance of such visits and partnerships cannot be overstated, as they serve to strengthen international relations and create opportunities for cooperation in an increasingly interconnected world.

A Russian-Spanish journalist and Cape Town native, channels his lifelong passion for South Africa into captivating stories for his local blog. With a diverse background and 50 years of rich experiences, Serjio's unique voice resonates with readers seeking to explore Cape Town's vibrant culture. His love for the city shines through in every piece, making Serjio the go-to source for the latest in South African adventures.

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