Botswana, South Africa Committed to Relations

| November 24, 2014 | 0 Comments

The President Lt Gen. Seretse Khama Ian Khama and his South African counterpart, Mr Jacob Zuma have said they remain committed to the bilateral relations that exist between the two countries.

Speaking during the Summit Meeting of the Second Session of the Bi-National Commission (BNC) in Gaborone on Thursday, November 20, President Khama said Botswana was ready to work with its southern neighbours “to aance our collective development goals through bilateral and regional cooperation for the betterment of our people”.

President Khama said this showed that they do not only demonstrate the importance they attach to the BNC but also attest to their commitment to aance their common values of democracy, equality, good governance and development.

“Our presence here today to review bilateral commitment and to give guidance in the conduct of our relations mirrors our common resolve in this regard,” he said.

The President said he was particularly pleased that the progress report in a number of sectors equally reflects this aspiration. He further said efforts have been made in the defence and security sector characterised by excellent cooperation in all forms of cross border crime and ensure public safety and security.

Progress has also been made in economic and trade sector which resulted with the conclusion of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA), the completion and commissioning of Middlepits cross water supply as well as the signing of the agreements on the construction of two cross border bridges at Platjaan and Notwane.

President Khama said government to government cooperation was highly appreciated and therefore they would continue to do more to facilitate interactions at all levels to realise the full potential of cooperation between Botswana and South Africa.

“It is indeed my fervent hope that the meetings of our officials and ministers have unlocked any impediments that may have inhibited full cooperation between our two countries in the past,” he said.

For his part, President Zuma said the BNP provides the two countries with a platform to expand areas of cooperation. “We need to prioritise cooperation on those areas that can have an immediate impact on the lives of our people,” he said.

President Zuma said the two countries need to look closely at economic projects that have cross border dimension. He said he notes the large presence of South African companies in Botswana involved in various sectors and added he hoped they contributed towards economic development and diversification.

President Zuma called for further cooperation in tourism saying the sector had potential to create employment that the two countries need.

“We need to work with great agility to enhance historical bonds that happily exist between our country and peoples. Our people expect more from us and we therefore not fail in our collective resolve to improve their lives,” he said.

Source : BOPA

Source : Botswana Daily News

Category: Governance

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