14 March 2012
South Africa wants to learn from Oman when it comes to tackling piracy in the Mozambican Channel, Defence Minister Lindiwe Sisulu said after signing a defence co-operation memorandum with her Omani counterpart, Sayyid bin Saud bin Harib al-Busaidi.
The memorandum, signed in Cape Town on Tuesday, includes an agreement on technical co-operation, an agreement to share lessons around peace-keeping operations, and the sale of military hardware to Oman by South Africa.
Sisulu said Oman had vital lessons to share with South Africa around maritime protection, as both countries were strategically placed on international sea routes between Asia and the rest of the world.
Oman was the first country in the Gulf to acquire military hardware from South Africa, and Sisulu said she was confident that, with South Africa’s large military industry, the relationship would continue.
The signing of the agreement follows President Jacob Zuma’s state visit to Oman in November 2011.
Oman and South Africa have enjoyed good relations with one another since 1995, with SA setting up an embassy in Muscat in 2002, and Oman establishing its Pretoria embassy the following year.