4 October 2005
Deputy Foreign Minister Aziz Pahad and his Zambian counterpart, Davison Mulela, have called on businesses in both countries to increase their dealings with each other.
The two deputy ministers held talks in Pretoria on Monday during which they undertook to finalise an agreement on reciprocal protection and promotion of investments.
South Africa is Zambia’s main export destination and is the largest investor in that country after the United Kingdom.
South African Tourism has embarked on a drive to encourage tour operators to market a “Visit Zambia Campaign”, while South African Airways has implemented new flights between the two countries.
With Zambia scheduled to hold elections in 2006 and South Africans soon going to the polls for municipal elections, the deputy ministers expressed common positions on the advancement of democracy, protection of human rights and the fight against corruption.
The meeting also paved way for a visit to South Africa by Zambian Foreign Minister Lt Gen Shikapwasha, scheduled for 18 to 19 October.
A cleansing and healing ceremony is scheduled to be held in Lusaka in November, in co-operation with the Freedom Park Trust, to honour South Africans who died in that country fighting for the end to apartheid.
President Thabo Mbeki participated in Zambia’s 40th Anniversary of Independence celebrations in 2004, while Zambian President Levy Mwanawasa was invited to South Africa’s 10th anniversary of democracy celebrations.