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SA: Joint statement by Gordon Brown, UK Prime Minister, and Jacob Zuma, President of South Africa, on issues discussed during President Zuma’s State visit (05/03/2010)

5th March 2010

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As part of his State Visit to the UK, President Zuma and Prime
Minister Brown discussed a wide range of bilateral issues and
shared international priorities. Talks between UK Ministers and
their South African counterparts accompanying President Zuma also
took forward joint work on a number of issues.

Bilateral Relations/International Institutional Reform

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The UK and South Africa are determined to build on strong
bilateral relations to advance a number of international and
regional issues by working together bilaterally and across a range
of international fora, including the G20, the UN and the
Commonwealth. The UK and South Africa will continue to work
together to reform global institutions tackling some of the world's
problems to make them more representative and more effective. In
particular, the UK supports permanent African representation on the
UN Security Council which will enable it to better address issues
of peace and security across the globe.

Climate Change

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The UK and South Africa co-operated closely in the run up to
Copenhagen and have agreed that urgent action is necessary to take
forward action toward a legally binding global agreement to limit
temperature rises to 2 degrees. An important part of this work
will be agreement on the financing of action to combat climate
change. Both the UK and South Africa welcome the new High Level
Advisory Group on Climate Finance and call for developed countries
to provide finance from 2013. The two countries will also redouble
their efforts on related technology, including the development of
South Africa's low-carbon growth and carbon capture and storage,
both of which the UK will support.

Nuclear/Arms Control

The ultimate goal of a world free of nuclear weapons requires
cooperation on a number of important international initiatives.
The UK and South Africa therefore look forward to President Obama's
Nuclear Security Summit next month and progress in the
international treaty framework to stop nuclear proliferation,
control the number of nuclear weapons and approve a new
international conventional arms trade treaty through the UN. There
was recognition that Iran remained in breach of five UN Security
Council Resolutions on its nuclear programme and, that in order to
pursue a legitimate nuclear energy policy, it should engage
positively with the international community and the IAEA.

G20/Global Recovery

As founder members of the G20, the UK and South Africa recognise
the success of decisive G20 action in preventing a total breakdown
of the world's financial system and putting in place the building
blocks for global recovery. Both countries agree that further
policy action is necessary to make the transition from crisis
response to strong and sustainable growth. It is particularly
important to ensure that this framework supports poverty reduction,
particularly in low income countries. At the same time the UK and
South Africa will work together towards reform of the International
Financial Institutions to make them more effective, accountable and
legitimate.

Achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs)

Concerted action is needed to accelerate progress toward
achieving the MDGs. The global economic downturn, climate change
and the effects of HIV/AIDS have all affected the speed of
progress. The UK and South Africa agree to work together through
the G20 and UN to make 2010 the year of action on combating
poverty, including by agreeing a global action plan on the MDGs at
the UN Summit in September 2010. The UK also reaffirmed its
commitment to support the fight against HIV/AIDS in South Africa
and is supporting the public health system in a new £25m programme.

We recognise the central importance of gender equality to
achieving the MDGs. The establishment of the new UN women's agency
will have a crucial role to play in focussing international efforts
and increasing the UN's impact on the lives of women and girls
worldwide. We both support early progress in ongoing negotiations
at the UN during 2010. We would like to see the new entity up and
running as soon as possible. We want the Secretary General now to
press forward with the announcement of the new Under Secretary
General of the new UN women's agency.

Regional Co-operation

The UK and South Africa signed a Memorandum of Understanding
committing the UK to provide £67 million to help the regional
economic communities to improve transport infrastructure in eight
countries. This will support Africa's efforts to increase trade
and develop economically in order to grow out of poverty. As part
of this drive, South Africa agreed to prioritise the establishment
of a One Stop Border Post between South Africa and Zimbabwe to
reduce costs and bureaucracy associated with cross-border trade.

Zimbabwe

The UK and South Africa called on the Inclusive Government of
Zimbabwe to complete as soon as possible the implementation of the
Global Political Agreement. They also noted the importance of
further economic progress and normalisation. Both countries called
for an immediate end to the harassment, the repeal of repressive
legislation and the establishment of the principles of free speech
and free association. The Inclusive Government must also put in
place the conditions for free and fair elections, which are
essential if Zimbabwe is to have the future its people deserve. In
this regard our countries will support the recently established
State Commissions. South Africa is playing a leading role in
encouraging positive developments in Zimbabwe, bilaterally and
through SADC. The UK will continue to explore with South Africa
possibilities for initiatives to encourage positive change and
benefit ordinary Zimbabweans.

Education

The UK and South Africa agreed to work with FIFA and the Global
Campaign for Education in their 1 Goal campaign, aimed at
harnessing the power of the 2010 FIFA World Cup for the benefit of
education for all. The two countries hope this drive will ensure
that other global leaders and institutions will back the commitment
to ensure that the 72 million primary-aged children not currently
receiving school education receive their basic human right to
education.

People to People Links

Both the UK and South Africa welcomed the many existing
initiatives to bring people in the two countries together and to
work for mutual benefit. We welcomed the flourishing links, such
as those between educational institutions, local government
structures and NGOs. The UK and South Africa also agreed to work
together to develop links between Further Education and Training
colleges in order to help South Africa develop its skills base to
help tackle unemployment with decent skilled work for all its
people. The UK will also continue to support scholarships and
visit programmes such as the Chevening Scholarships and British
Leadership Visits, as well as work towards the establishment of a
UK-South Africa Next Generation Forum to deepen the links between
young people who will be our next generation of leaders.

 

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