President Cyril Ramaphosa is on a working visit to Japan as well as the G20 Summit, his first international engagement since his inauguration last month.
During the visit, the President will also lead a South African delegation to the annual G20 Leaders’ Summit.
This is the first time Japan will host the G20 Summit as well as the Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors’ Meeting, the Foreign Ministers’ Meeting, and other ministerial meetings.
Leaders’ Summit will be held in the city of Osaka, while other meetings will be hosted at eight different locations throughout Japan.
The G20 was established in 1999 to increase multilateral cooperation for the recovery of the global economy, bring stability to the global financial system, promote long-term sustainable growth and to strengthen growth and global governance.
The 2019 Summit will focus on eight key themes spanning the global economy, trade and investment, innovation, environment and energy, employment, women’s empowerment, development and health.
These themes reflect, to a large degree, South Africa’s own national priorities, as set out in President Cyril Ramaphosa’s State of the Nation Address of Thursday, 20 June 2019.
South Africa’s participation in the Summit arises from the country’s international relations policy which is directed at creating a better South Africa and contributing to a better Africa and a better world.
In a statement issued on Wednesday, the Presidency said South Africa will leverage the Summit as a platform for securing financial and other support for infrastructure development; advancing the G20 Compact with Africa initiative and reinforcing the need for strong, sustainable, balanced and inclusive growth at the national and global level.
“South Africa will further seek to ensure G20 support for the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals in Africa and developing regions and countries. This focus includes the combating of illicit financial flows which deprives Africa of resources that could otherwise be harnessed for development,” said the Presidency in the statement.
Since 2010, South Africa has co-chaired the Development Working Group of the G20.
Through this platform, added the Presidency, South Africa has been able to support the Japanese Presidency’s deliverable on Human Capital Investment that brings together education and health.
Ahead of the Summit, President Ramaphosa will participate in the BRICS Leaders’ Meeting that will be chaired by Brazil.The President will also convene the standing trilateral meeting of African Leaders in attendance at the G20 to exchange views with Egypt as Chair of the African Union (AU) and Senegal (NEPAD President) on African priorities for the Summit.
President Ramaphosa will also join the China-Africa Leaders Meeting in which South Africa, Egypt, Senegal and United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres will participate.
The President will also hold a series of bilateral meetings with G20 Leaders during the course of the Summit.
During the visit, President Ramaphosa is expected to address a business round table engagement with Japanese business leaders.
The President will be accompanied by Ministers of Finance Tito Mboweni, International Relations and Cooperation Naledi Pandor and Trade and Industry Ebrahim Patel.