27 July 2018 - SABC Digital News

Khusela Diko on the 10th BRICS Summit as it wraps up

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no you have to rush off quickly cuz I

thank you so much for making the time I know it's too early to start talking about conclusions but just sum up the past few days well thank you very much to Israel I think it's been a very successful summit the heads of state came together you know in Africa you know after most Brits in Africa so it was not just about South Africa but the continent as a whole they were looking at issues of inclusive growth and shared prosperity but also how our countries are able to prepare appropriately for the fourth Industrial Revolution so we've had a number of sessions as you would have seen the closed session the open session but we've also had cultural exchanges now this is because the key pillars of BRICS is economic economy relations as well as trade it's peace and security issues as well as people-to-people relations so we've managed to cover all of those issues the Janice work declaration was adopted yesterday by the heads of state and this declaration speaks to how BRICS countries will continue to cooperate in order to strengthen multilateralism in order to ensure the building of a more just world order so those are the

conversations that are going on as you indicated this morning we will be joined by what we call the BRICS outreach countries these are other countries on the African continent that will be engaging with leaders of BRICS but we also have something called the BRICS plus now brace plus is a other countries that are and it's not just other countries but also regional and international organizations that are outside of BRICS but you know a form part of these emerging and developing countries that are so integral to the advancement of the objectives of bricks it's interesting how the Jobbik declaration also incorporated what South Africa is celebrating right now this entire centenary celebrations Oh indeed President Mandela has been at the center of this particular summit it's not only BRICS the non-aligned movement the African Union and in September the United Nations all of these bodies coming together to celebrate the role that Adam and Ella played as a global icon of reconciliation of peace and universal justice so the BRICS leaders have affirmed you know their commitment to continuing

to uphold those values as we seek to create this New World Order the other point of the declaration is what you mentioned any inclusive growth and shared prosperity and yet concerns that South Africa seems to be like the stepchild of the group always holding out a hand to receive loans and overtures from the other leaders what is our role they could be there's nothing further from the truth South Africa is not a stepchild we are not the small essent BRICS South Africa is an equal partner in terms of the values of BRICS it speaks to mutual respect it speaks to sovereign equality it speaks to inclusiveness democracy but obviously a lot of the other countries are bigger than us I mean you look at China with over 1 billion people as your population and South Africa setting latest figures is 57 million so we are a smaller market but while we are a smaller market you have a lot of South African companies that have invested in China have invested in India Brazil and elsewhere in the same vein we have those those countries here but being a small economy a developing country we continue

to engage them for for investment in our in our in our economy a Minister of Trade and Industry dr. Rob Davis calls it an investment late LED trade so it's a win-win relationship for all of us but it's also the relation the reason why South Africa speaks about the African continent as a whole so when we assigned the Africa freed Africa continental free trade agreement and pushing regional integration pushing continental integration it is about creating a bigger market I mean we begin to equal the likes of China once you consolidate Africa into a single market and our GDP is right up there so we'll continue playing the role that we we think we must and not just for ourselves but the continent and the global south as a whole from analysis saying the conference the summit is an opportunity for the group to take advantage of the protectionism conversation that's going on in America and the uncertainty in Europe have we been able to did you get a sense that the group is taking taking that lifeline Oh indeed I think the heads of state are united on the fact that they reject unilateralism they firmly believe in uphold and will

continue to advance multilateralism in terms of resolution of world challenges they've also spoken about ensuring that we have a rules-based trading environment throughout the world and depend by the principles of the World Trade Organization the United Nations remains at the center I think the declaration speaks to the fact that you cannot have any single country or countries acting unilaterally the United Nation remains the one that must be at the center of ensuring any international action in any part of the world the multilateralism conversation has always included discussions about the possibility of addition of other members you spoke now about BRICS plus it has any such conversation taking place what we do know that on the sidelines there are a number of countries that are lobbying the BRICS members I mean you don't apply to be a member of BRICS so there are you know those conversations happening there's nothing at this point you know the the president's the heads of states of heads of state and government have also held bilateral talks you know with the various other countries and some of the issues that

may not necessarily be raised in the sessions you know they still get processed through BRICS through those bilateral engagements so it's early days yet to speak to any new members at this point but I'm sure we'll keep an eye on on let's talk about the program today the outreach program and they retreat with the leaders what can we expect what can our viewers expect well the the retreat has started so it is just the heads of state of BRICS who are participating in that they are looking obviously at the advances that we have made over the last ten years I mean if you looked at the declaration that they adopted yesterday they spoke about you know the successes that have been recorded over the last decade or so of cooperation particularly in areas of job creation which I think are very important for us as South Africans I'm interested in our country over 30,000 jobs have been created through investments that came from BRICS countries but also they are looking at some of the commitments we've made in terms of the the fourth Industrial Revolution how do you ensure issues of

cybersecurity are taken on board so it's really just reviewing you know the way forward from here South Africa remains chairperson until the end of the year and you know those are the discussions and that we looking there's very interesting things that we've put at the center of our chapters and should the establishment of a BRICS Women's Forum you know you know sitting in some of the meetings you'd notice that some of the delegations are all men you know South Africa must commend itself it is indeed and I think those are the discussions we have with our partners we share experiences and learnings and so forth then afterwards then it's then your BRICS your BRICS outreach program that starts which I think at this point there's consideration to combine it with with the BRICS plus interesting participants Desiree Jamaica is here as the incoming chair of CARICOM yes Argentina is also here turkey is here the heads of state are represented and as you were saying you know from Africa already a very strong showing Zimbabwe has arrived the head of state of Zambia Togo Senegal so you know we're looking forward to

those engagements the BRICS summit might be a scheduled meeting but each country leader comes with their own expectation one magazine said the Emperor's wish list and one of the conversations we've inherited is the conversation about Russia and nuclear power tell us about the individual conversations President Rama pasa has had with the different leaders and specifically talking about the nuclear conversation yeah well President on office I came here obviously within the context of BRICS and obviously you know aligned to the objectives of the group and what we want to achieve but at the center of his administration is attracting investment in order to create jobs and economic recovery in our in our economy so he's been focused on that in the conversations that he's met with the president of Brazil obviously reflecting on our trade relationship feeling that it could be better he has requested you know sharing of skills particularly in agriculture wanting to send a delegation through to Brazil you know just to strengthen our hand in that he's also met with the President of India and looking at our

trade relations but we share a special time in history if it made with India both of us celebrating Nelson Mandela and Mahatma Gandhi on his arrival in South Africa and then he met with Russia as you're indicating we've seen some positive movements in terms of the trade relationship with Russia I think up 50 percent since last year and we're looking at further cooperation so in various areas of space exploration President Putin is quite excited about we're looking at cooperation around defense and we're looking at cooperation around energy now as it relates to energy the president raza has put our position as a country very clear that ours is and our resource plan speaks to an energy mix we will continue to use fossil fuels we've got a lot of coal we're not going to close those mines anytime soon we're looking at renewables but we'll continue to use it in nuclear you know sometimes we forget that South Africa already has nuclear capacity in Kubik station and so forth and there was an agreement that had been signed with Russia for cooperation around nuclear it's still sitting in Parliament not yet ratified but the one thing that

president Ramaphosa has has reaffirmed is that if we expand our nuclear capacity we will do so at a pace and scale that South Africa can afford and while uh you know we're still on track with our program of economic recovery we would not at this point once to burden you know the viscous with any major you know new initiatives of such nature and now we have to let you go but we're speaking about massive projects here what commitment can the president give to the South African public that you will take us along as you negotiate this project so that we no detail and there's a sense of transparency that is the intention and in fact it's the conversations that we're having all the time to say BRICS will come and brick logo and what must remain must be a legacy of having changed the daily realities of our people so for example it is you just to give you a little sneak peak we like that later this morning a President Putin as well as President Rama pasa I expected to witness the signing of an agreement between Petra essay and roster I think the company is called which looks at exploration of oil reserves just off the

shore of South Africa now you'll know we are we're facing challenges in terms of our petrol prices and this agreement where Russia is putting in a 500 million US dollars looks at how we're going to expand you know our capacity in terms of oil petroleum and so forth but also with an engagement with DTI to say that there's agreements that have been concluded here around water resources around agricultural production and a grossing and we need to ensure that we have created systems for our people to you know open pathways as the president has said for people to be able to participate in that so through our a group parks and all of these other programs that we're running our intention is to ensure that South Africans young people in particular are able to benefit from those agreements that's release you to start your day thank you so much Casella dqo is the spokesperson for the presidency in South Africa just giving us some sort of summing up the past few days as we try to unpack the events that have taken place since BRICS summit 2018 started you're watching the agenda and we'll continue to try and bring through

people who can give us the sense of understanding of the events that took place here stay watching and let's go back to Joburg for now

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