SA President Cyril Ramaphosa. FILE PHOTO: ANA

CAPE TOWN - President Cyril Ramaphosa has welcomed the interest shown in South Africa by the global business community at the just concluded G7 Leaders’ Outreach Summit in Quebec City in Canada.

In a statement, the SA presidency said Ramaphosa welcomed the interest in SA as an investment destination and lauded the “wonderful exchange of views” in a session he described as oversold. 

According to the presidency, Ramaphosa regards this interest as demonstrating a recognition of South Africa’s new dawn - a period of renewal and rebuilding. 

Ramaphosa concluded his working visit to Canada where he participated in the G7 Leaders’ Outreach Summit held in Quebec City under the theme “Healthy, Productive and Resilient Oceans and Seas, Coasts and Communities”.

South Africa’s participation in the two-day session was at the invitation of the host country Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. 

Ramaphosa, who was accompanied by Environmental Affairs Minister Edna Molewa and a business delegation, had held engagements with the business community as part of his stated drive to attract investment to grow the economy and create jobs, as well as reduce poverty and inequality.

Ramaphosa further described the G7 Outreach Summit as a success and stressed the importance of the strong political signal delivered by the G7 Leaders’ Outreach focus on developing and implementing innovative strategies to leapfrog the global effort to address issues facing the world’s oceans, including stressors such as plastic pollution, building the resilience of coasts and communities, improving the protection of the world’s oceans and ensuring sustainable use of marine resources. 

He further noted the paramount importance of strengthening the multi-lateral approach to managing ocean resources beyond national jurisdiction in these efforts.

Ramaphosa further welcomed the opportunity presented for countries to share their experiences, with South Africa reflecting on its own milestones, successes and challenges in relation to management of our oceans as a resource to drive economic growth. 

The statement added that Ramaphosa shared, amongst others, South Africa’s strategy to research and develop alternatives and substitutes for single-use plastics. 

These actions by South Africa are complemented with cooperative strategies to expand marine protected areas, address over-exploitation through Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated fisheries detection and enforcement and supported by an integrated, shared ocean information system as a basis for the sustainable management of the oceans and its users.

The President is confident that preserving and opening up the ocean economy has a potential to create approximately one million jobs from various activities including shipbuilding, sea transportation, aquaculture and exploration of oil and gas, amongst others, the statement added.

On the side-lines of the Summit, Ramaphosa also held a number of bilateral engagements with Heads of State and Government from various countries including Norway, France, Germany, Vietnam, Rwanda, Kenya and the host country, Canada.

- African News Agency (ANA)