15 December 2010
South Africa and Angola have signed agreements paving the way for increased cooperation in public works and infrastructure development, telecommunications, financial markets, information and communication technology, and veterinary services.
“The signing of these instruments is a clear indication of our collective determination to take our relations to higher levels for the mutual benefit of our respective countries,” President Jacob Zuma said in Pretoria on Tuesday.
He was briefing the media after holding talks with his Angolan counterpart, President Jose Eduardo dos Santos, who is in South Africa for a state visit.
Prioritising economic cooperation
Zuma said they had directed respective ministers to work towards the finalisation of other outstanding agreements. These include agreements on arts and culture, education and merchant shipping.
During the talks, the two presidents emphasised the importance of strengthening relations in a number of fields, including energy, agriculture, mining, arts and culture, infrastructure development, communications, education, health and sport.
“Of particular importance is the need to prioritise economic cooperation through trade and investment, thus creating job opportunities in our respective countries,” Zuma said, adding that the South Africa-Angola Business Forum would help identify further areas of cooperation for businesses of the two countries.
Angola will assume the chair of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) in 2011, while South Africa will take over the chair of the SADC organ on politics, defence and security.
“Therefore, our two countries will be entrusted with responsibilities ranging from economic integration to peace, security and stability in the region,” Zuma sadi.
In 2009, South African exports to Angola amounted to R5.5-billion, while Angolan exports to South Africa amounted to almost R12-billion.