MEDIA COMMUNIQUE ON THE OFFICIAL VISIT OF DEPUTY PRESIDENT JACOB ZUMA TO UKRAINE, THE CZECH REPUBLIC AND BULGARIA
The Department of Foreign Affairs announces the departure of Deputy President Jacob Zuma on an official visit to the following countries:
Ukraine: 18 to 19 September 2000
The Czech Republic: 20 to 21 September 2000
Bulgaria : 22 to 23 September 2000
Deputy President Zuma will be accompanied by a delegation comprising the following Ministers and Deputy Ministers:
Dr E Pahad, Minister in the Presidency
Dr Skweyiya, Minister of Social Development
Ms L Hendriks, Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry
Ms NC Madlala-Routledge, Deputy Minister of Defence
A number of senior officials from the relevant Departments will also accompany Deputy President Zuma.
The purpose of the visit is to strengthen bilateral relations with countries in Central and Eastern Europe as well as to discuss issues of mutual multilateral interest. The Deputy President will, inter alia, hold political discussions with President L Kuchma of Ukraine and President V Havel of the Czech Republic. Deputy President Zuma will furthermore participate in a wide range of meetings and activities in each of the countries that he will be visiting. The accompanying Ministers and Deputy Ministers will also meet with their counterparts and will address specific issues that fall within their respective portfolios. These meetings will complement the discussions and programme of Deputy President Zuma.
Apart from bilateral and multilateral discussions, the visit to this region will also focus on developing economic relations between South Africa and these countries. The possibility of increased interaction in the fields of science and technology and population and welfare development, will also feature strongly in the programme.
The following matters will, i.a., come under discussion in each of the countries to be visited: In Ukraine, Deputy President Zuma will focus on trade, science and technology co-operation and a number of multilateral matters. During dialogue with counterparts in the Czech Republic and Bulgaria, the EU accession process and the geo-political situation in the Balkans will be discussed. In the multilateral field, issues such as disarmament and UN reform will also feature prominently.
South Africa regards its relations with countries of Central and Eastern Europe as particularly important in view of the fact that countries in this region are also in a stage of transformation and are grappling with many of the same questions as South Africa. These include the process of globalisation, South-South co-operation, socio-economic development, UN reform and international trade. The visit by Deputy President Zuma and his delegation will afford an excellent opportunity to discuss these issues and, in particular, to promote co-operation within the context of the African Renaissance.
For more information contact Daniel Ngwepe, Cell no. 082 858 0295
Issued by the Department of Foreign Affairs, 14 September 2000