Public lecture by Deputy Minister Reginah Mhaule on the Outcomes of the 10th BRICS Johannesburg Summit on the Sol Plaatjie University, Kimberley, Northern Cape, 19 September 2018 :
Our Programme Director, Prof Mary Jean Baxen,
Prof Collin Miruka,
Prof Patrick Fitzgerald,
Members of Senate and Council current,
MEC of Education, Ms Barbara Bartlett and different members of Exco current,
Academics and Staff,
Provincial Chairperson of the ANC, Dr Zamani Saul, the management and all different political events current,
President of SRC, Mr Zolani Jack, Members of the SRC and your entire pupil management current,
Officials current right here,
I’m honoured and naturally delighted to work together with you at the moment, significantly due to our focus of engagement which is the outcomes of the not too long ago concluded 10th BRICS Summit which was held in Johannesburg in July this year. You will recall that before the graduation of the Summit, we criss-crossed the size and breadth of our nation presenting and informing our folks what our partnership throughout the BRICS entails. We additional targeted on guaranteeing that South Africans understands the significance we connect to the BRICS formation and the advantages we derive thereof.
In this context we made a dedication to get again to the folks and report on the outcomes of the Summit. Certainly that is our first public lecture of this sort which is held on the college named after the first Secretary General of the South African Native National Congress, later named African National Congress (ANC) and likewise the first Black South African to write down a novel, Solomon Tshekisho Plaatje.
The summit occurred through the 10th anniversary of the BRICS formation which coincided with a really significant year the place South Africa celebrates the centenary of the 2 giants in our liberation, specifically Mama Albertina Sisulu and former President Tata Nelson Mandela. Whose contribution form our current democratic dispensation and internationalist character.
The Summit certainly afforded us a becoming platform to again replicate on the essential pillars of our international policy, significantly our cooperation with nations of the South. Tata Madiba alluded to this in his inaugural State of the Nation Address (SONA) on 24 May 1994 when he stated: “We will also be looking very closely at the question of enhancing South-South cooperation in general as part of the effort to expand our economic links with the rest of the world.”
I can inform you that it’s on this context that South Africa accepted the invitation to hitch BRICS in 2011. We consider that financial cooperation remains an essential instrument to pursue our nationwide pursuits and enhance the residing circumstances of our folks whereas contributing to the well-being of our fellow Africans and all these in communities throughout our nations.
Having stated that, I want to take a chance to briefly replicate on the historical past of our membership to the BRICS formation before outlining the outcomes of the summit and the advantages we’ve got leveraged from the alternatives it continues to offer.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
It have to be public data that our international policy outlook and continued deal with strengthening relations with formations and other people of the South is essentially knowledgeable by our historical past in addition to identification. We nonetheless should emphasise that we’re Africans who share historic commonalities with nations of the Global South which incorporates amongst others, the battle against apartheid and colonialism. We additionally share widespread aspirations in regard to the form of the world we want to reside in and the shared future which might profit humanity.
Similarly, the BRICS formation on this context signifies an extended standing custom of solidarity that was firmly established 63 years in the past, in April 1955. This was when nations of Asia and Africa met on the historic Bandung Conference within the rising Cold War period scenario of which the assembly’s significance and outcomes are properly documented. I need to nonetheless remind you that the Bandung Conference resulted within the formation of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) in later years.
Amid strain from the Cold War bipolarisation, these nations had been capable of concertedly affirm that they’d select neither the East nor the West, however pursue their very own path and technique under the “Bandung Principles” of the Afro-Asia solidarity. For us it is very important recall that South Africa was on the Bandung Conference, represented by chosen ANC leaders.
Subsequently, with the attainment of our democracy, it’s again widespread data that South Africa shared the identical socio-economic and underdeveloped challenges as nations of the Global South. To a sure extent our challenges proceed to be compounded by a global system that perpetuates the marginalisation of the Global South and the poor in each nook of the globe.
The BRICS formation has demonstrated potential to alter the world. This is feasible contemplating that the BRICS formation has joined an array of inter-regional our bodies that contribute to global diffusion of energy. Of course we joined the BRICS formation to advance our international policy goals which are predicated on our home pursuits and the promotion of the African Agenda.
We can, once again, underscore that our 2018 Chairship of the BRICS Forum has been guided by our dedication to make sure that the African Agenda, in addition to that of the Global South, remain on the Agenda of BRICS, significantly because it pertains to garnering BRICS help for industrialisation and infrastructure improvement. We have sought to harmonise insurance policies adopted in regional and worldwide fora with these pursued in BRICS, extra notably the African Union’s Agenda 2063 and the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
The advantages that South Africa and the African derive from our membership of the BRICS are each sensible and tangible. A living proof is that South Africa-BRIC commerce has grown from $28bn in 2010 to $35bn in 2017.
Additionally the institution and operalisation of the BRICS New Development Bank in addition to the Africa Regional Centre (ARC), which we proudly host in Johannesburg, has introduced nearer the choice mission funding establishment to our folks and the continent.
Just as a reminder, infrastructure and sustainable improvement mission funding by the BRICS financial institution will even be prolonged to nations that aren’t members of the formation, and due to this fact African nations will profit an incredible deal. I can say with none worry of contradiction that the ARC will allow us to determine tasks that may improve financial connectivity and bolster intra-Africa commerce, amongst others.
It should additional be famous that we witnessed with pleasure the first tranche of NDB mission loans disbursed in 2016. I recall that this trench included a mission in renewable vitality amounting to 180 million USD to our personal nation. This has enabled us to stabilize our electrical energy grid provide and hold the much-needed jobs by continued operations in factories. There are those that are already saying the NDB could be the brand new World Bank, so far as I do know this was not the target of its creation. In May 2018 South Africa was granted an extra mortgage of USD 200 million by the NDB for enlargement of the Durban port. It is price noting that to date the NDB has disbursed loans totalling USD 5.1 billion.
Let me at this juncture flip my focus to some particular outcomes of the 2018 10th BRICS Summit. South Africa in its capability as Chair of the BRICS grouping hosted the Johannesburg Summit on the 25-27 July 2018, in Sandton, Johannesburg, under the theme, “BRICS in Africa: Collaboration for Inclusive Growth and Shared Prosperity in the 4th Industrial Revolution”.
President Ramaphosa in his opening handle to the Summit expanded on the theme, additional stating, quantum leaps in know-how and innovation current monumental alternatives for development, improvement and human progress.The president additionally indicated that the surge in innovation has the potential to dramatically enhance productiveness and to position whole nations on a brand new trajectory of prosperity. It has the potential to unravel multiple of the social issues we face, by higher equipping us to fight illness, starvation and environmental degradation.
A report by the World Economic Forum predicts that by 2020, which is roughly two years from now, three most essential expertise for an worker will probably be advanced problem-solving, vital considering and creativity. Admittedly this require rising markets to institute modern programmes to re-skill the current workforce to have the ability to match the advances in know-how. This after all will probably be achieved throughout the context of BRICS and likewise in cooperation with different formation throughout the globe.
In line with the theme, we knowledgeable our friends that, as a rustic, we’ve got already dedicated to determine a Digital Industrial Revolution Commission. It will embody the personal sector and civil society, amongst others. In this regard, the BRICS Summit has adopted the Johannesburg declaration and an Action Plan primarily based on this thematic focus and different urgent worldwide points. The BRICS Heads of State additionally presided over the signing of a few memorandums of understanding.
During deliberations of the Annual Meeting of the BRICS Business Council, we recognised the achievements and progress the Council had revamped the previous year and analysed the alternatives and challenges dealing with the rising economies. The 5 BRICS nations bolstered their ongoing dedication and agreed on the significance of guaranteeing larger financial, commerce and funding ties amongst the BRICS nations.
The three main focus areas recognized throughout South Africa’s BRICS Business Council’s rotating chairmanship had been: 1. Youth – Fostering Entrepreneurship 2. The Digital Economy – Skills Development for the 4th Industrial Revolution 3. Agriculture and Food Security
Perhaps I need to state that, flowing from the above and our dedication to the Establishment of the BRICS Credit Rating Agency, there’s rising global pursuits in how we handle the BRICS affairs. Just a number of week in the past, two of the ‘Big Three’ rating businesses has given the BRICS New Development Bank constructive rankings, Standard & Poor's (S&P) has assigned its AA+ long-term and A1+ short-term issuer rankings with a secure outlook whereas Fitch assigned the NDB a long-term issuer default rating (IDR) of AA+ with a secure outlook and a short-term IDR of F1+. This is a constructive improvement in that it supplies the NDB with a singular alternative to determine itself as an essential player within the multilateral improvement finance house. This additional negates the notion of naysayers that the BRICS grouping lacks the required clout to affect global energy dynamics.
Also, the Council reviewed the main work and achievements throughout South Africa’s presidency in 2018 and listened to the reviews offered by the 9 working teams, on vitality and the inexperienced financial system, monetary providers, deregulation, manufacturing, infrastructure, agribusiness, expertise improvement, regional aviation and the digital financial system.
Further strikes in direction of enhancing financial improvement got here within the form of the institution of a BRICS Tourism Track and the BRICS Women’s Initiative.
On a separate matter, a proposal was made to the Summit, arising from deliberations from the 2018 BRICS Youth Summit, to think about the institution of a Youth Working Group, because the 10th Working Group of the Council. This matter is receiving the eye it deserves.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Let me underscore that every one the BRICS companions utilised the summit event to recommit to the pursuit of a rules-based, clear, non-discriminatory, open and inclusive multilateral buying and selling system, as embodied within the World Trade Organisation (WTO). Importantly, this dedication of the BRICS Leaders was additionally strongly supported by the BRICS Outreach companions.
This brings me to an essential facet of our internet hosting. We convened, on the margins of the summit, the BRICS-Africa Outreach Dialogue and the BRICS Plus Initiative. Thus the next Heads of State/Government attended the Summit: Rwanda, Ethiopia, Angola, Zambia, Namibia, Senegal, Gabon, Togo, Uganda, Jamaica, Argentina, Turkey, Botswana, DRC, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Seychelles, Tanzania and Zimbabwe
I need to point out that each the Outreach Dialogue and the Initiative had been held concurrently to replicate the broad partnerships BRICS has stimulated with the African continent and the Global South.
Key outcomes of the Johannesburg Declaration, included amongst others: institution of a BRICS Working Group on the 4th Industrial Revolution by the BRICS Partnership on New Industrial Revolution (PartNIR) and its Advisory Group consisting of respective representatives of BRICS Ministries of Industry; BRICS Networks of Science Parks, Technology Business Incubators and Small and Medium-sized Enterprises had been established to additional help initiatives of the 4th Industrial Revolution; BRICS Vaccine Centre was established right here in South Africa.
The declaration, which was reached to the rules of consensus additional dedicated to the principals of mutual respects, sovereignty, equality, democracy, inclusiveness and strengthened collaboration in key subthemes; specifically: Strengthening multilateralism, reforming global governance and addressing widespread challenges; Strengthening and consolidation BRICS cooperation in International peace and Security; BRICS partnership for global financial restoration, reform of economic and financial global governance establishments, and the Forth Industrial Revolution; and People to People Cooperation.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
In conclusion, permit me to show my consideration to training as a matter that acquired a targeted consideration of the summit. Our leaders agreed that there’s a must develop an final result primarily based training that may help us in assembly the developmental challenges introduced by the Fourth Industrial Revolution. In this vein the BRICS Heads of State/Governments reaffirmed the significance of upper training trade for BRICS and known as for a community of universities throughout the BRICS nations to collaborate and trade data and analysis expertise.
Again, I’m alluding to this in order that the Institution we visiting at the moment, is aware of that it additionally has a task to play within the improvement of the BRICS instructional Programme. The BRICS University Network is due to this fact an essential construction that may undertake the analysis that’s wanted to tell the general BRICS collaboration and the way it should evolve.
There are pockets of excellence in all our universities and our goal needs to be to learn all.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Republic of South Africa: Department of International Relations and Cooperation.