Posted by: africanpressorganization | 7 June 2011

Japan-South Africa Foreign Ministers’ Meeting





Japan-South Africa Foreign Ministers’ Meeting



TOKYO, Japan, June 7, 2011/African Press Organization (APO)/ — For about 50 minutes from 5:45 PM (Japan Time) on Thursday, June 2, Mr. Takeaki Matsumoto, Minister for Foreign Affairs, held a meeting with H.E. Ms. Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, Minister of International Relations and Cooperation of the Republic of South Africa, at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. A dinner was hosted by Minister Matsumoto afterwards. An outline of the meeting and the dinner is as follows.



Minister Matsumoto extended a sincere welcome to Minister Nkoana-Mashabane on the occasion of her first visit to Japan, and once again expressed his gratitude for the many messages of condolence Japan has received from South Africa following the Great East Japan Earthquake, as well as for the assistance extended by the South African rescue teams who did an outstanding job, in affected areas. In response to this, Minister Nkoana-Mashabane once again offered her condolences for the victims of the Great East Japan Earthquake and also conveyed a personal message of sympathy from South African President Jacob Zuma.



Bilateral Relations

(1) Both ministers praised the promotion of the “strategic cooperative relations” between the two counties, and agreed that Japan and South Africa should further strengthen the relations in political and economic fields.


(2) Minister Matsumoto requested that President Zuma visit Japan at an early date. In response to this, Minister Nkoana-Mashabane said that President Zuma was looking forward to visiting Japan and that during his visit he would be accompanied by a group of leading figures from South African economic circles, to strongly bolster the economic relationship between the two countries.


(3) Minister Matsumoto said that Japanese companies have a high level of interest in South Africa’s mineral resources and infrastructure fields, and were also raising their business performance in these areas, and that the Government of Japan wishes to support this trend continuously. In response, Minister Nkoana-Mashabane said that South Africa wished to promote the industrial cooperation between the two countries so that the advanced technology and the wealth of experience possessed by Japanese companies could be utilized in South Africa.


(4) Minister Matsumoto stated that in the wake of the nuclear power station accident, Japan would proceed to strengthen nuclear safety. The two foreign ministers exchanged views on the mutual cooperation between Japan and South Africa in the nuclear power field. In this regard, Minister Nkoana-Mashabane expressed her expectations and welcomed the prospect of continued cooperation with Japan.


(5) Both ministers agreed that the two countries would carry out studies of specific projects at an early date with the aim of resuming yen loans to South Africa.


(6) Both ministers agreed to promote Japanese cooperation in the development of human resources in South Africa by taking advantage of the opportunity presented by the signing of the Technical Cooperation Agreement. Both ministers also welcomed the reaching of a basic agreement on the Japan-South Africa Customs Mutual Assistance Agreement and agreed upon the continued cooperation between the two countries towards the early entry into effect of the agreement.



Cooperation in International Fora

(1) Both ministers agreed that the two countries would strive for continued cooperation towards the success of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) Follow-up Meeting, which is currently being held, and that they would also cooperate in leading the discussion concerning the period after 2015.


(2) Minister Matsumoto once again asked Minister Nkoana-Mashabane about the realization of dialogue with the IBSA (India, Brazil, and South Africa). Minister Nkoana-Mashabane replied that South Africa would like to consider the request in a positive manner for the IBSA summit to be held this autumn in South Africa.


(3) Minister Matsumoto expressed his gratitude for South Africa’s cooperation at the Third TICAD Ministerial Follow-up Meeting in Senegal in May 2011. Minister Nkoana-Mashabane said that Japan’s unwavering determination to faithfully implement the TICAD IV pledges, overcoming the recent earthquake disaster, as expressed by Minister Matsumoto, has made a strong impression on Africa and is highly appreciated.


(4) Both ministers agreed that the two countries would work together closely towards the reform of the United Nations Security Council.


(5) Regarding the issue of climate change, Minister Matsumoto said that Japan would strongly support Minister Nkoana-Mashabane in her role as chair of COP 17, and both ministers agreed that the two countries would continue working together towards the success of COP 17.


(6) Regarding nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation, both ministers agreed that Japan, as the only country to have suffered atomic bombings, and South Africa, as a country that has voluntarily dismantled its nuclear weapons program, would cooperate together in multilateral fora.



Situation in the African Region

The two foreign minsters exchanged views concerning regional situations, including the situations in Egypt, Libya, and North Korea.

Moreover, taking advantage of the opportunity presented by Minister Nkoana-Mashabane’s visit to Japan, a lively exchange of views centered on the four major areas: economic partnership, trade and investment, development cooperation, and climate change, were held as part of the 11th Japan-South Africa Partnership Forum, a forum for political dialogue between Japan and South Africa.



Japan – Ministry of Foreign Affairs


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