Pretoria – President Cyril Ramaphosa will today host his Federal Republic of Côte d’Ivoire counterpart, President Alassane Ouattara who is in Pretoria for a State visit.
The engagement will be Ouattara’s reciprocal visit to South Africa following Ramaphosa’s successful State Visit to Côte d’Ivoire in December last year.
“President Ramaphosa and President Ouattara are expected to hold bilateral discussions, witness the signing of a number of agreements and address a South Africa – Côte d’Ivoire Business Forum,” said Ramaphosa’s spokesperson Vincent Magwenya.
South Africa and Côte d’Ivoire enjoy close political, economic, social and cultural ties.
Magwenya said bilateral relations between the two countries are managed through the joint commission of co-operation (JCC), established in December 2015, as a structured bilateral mechanism to facilitate political, economic, social, cultural, scientific and technical co-operation between the two African States.
“Since the establishment of the JCC, nine memorandums of understanding (MoU) and agreements have been signed between the two countries in sectors such as agriculture, mining, transport, telecommunications and defence. During the State visit the two countries aim to sign additional agreements to further strengthen bilateral relations,” he said.
“The bilateral trade between South Africa and Côte d’Ivoire remains on an upward trajectory. Despite the challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic, total trade between the two countries increased from R1.3 billion in 2019 to R2bn in 2021. This represented an increase of about R774 million of total trade between the two countries.”
The portfolio of South Africa’s investments in Côte d’Ivoire is also increasing rapidly. Among others, the Presidency said the following South African companies are invested in Côte d’Ivoire:
•Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA)
In October last year, Minister of International Relations and Cooperation Naledi Pandor was in Abidjan, the capital of Côte d’Ivoire, leading a South African delegation at the session of the joint commission for cooperation between the two nations.
At the time, Côte d’Ivoire’s ambassador to South Africa Sakaria Kone welcomed the delegation’s presence in Abidjan, saying trade relations between the two countries is growing.
“I am very happy that the first session of the joint commission for cooperation is taking place, after five years of being dormant in terms of activities. The establishment of the joint commission was signed in December 2015. Six years later, we are having the first session,” Kone said.