Johannesburg - South African President Cyril Ramaphosa on Friday, underscored the importance of the country's relations with members of the Brics group of countries in engagements with the governments of China and Russia, the Presidency said.
Brics is the association of five major emerging national economies: Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.
The Presidency said that Ramaphosa hosted a courtesy call by Yang Jiechi, Special Envoy of President Xi Jinping of the People’s Republic of China and member of the State Council of China.
"Mr Yang conveyed to President Ramaphosa President Xi’s warmest personal congratulations as well as the best wishes of the government and people of China on President Ramaphosa’s election to the position of President in February 2018. President Ramaphosa in turn conveyed his congratulations and those of the people of South Africa on the recent re-election of President Xi as leader of the People’s Republic of China," Ramaphosa's office said.
"President Ramaphosa said the re-election of President Xi presented an opportunity for South Africa to deepen its strategic and historic political, economic, social and international cooperation with China at a personal, bilateral, regional and global level. Both parties have agreed to State Visits. President Ramaphosa said he is eagerly awaiting a visit by President Xi to South Africa in July ahead of South Africa’s hosting of the 10th Brics Summit in which Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa will participate."
The Presidency said that Ramaphosa would also pay a state visit to China ahead of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) Summit. He will co-chair the summit with Xi.
Ramaphosa was on a call with Moscow, on Friday and congratulated President Vladimir Putin on his re-election.
"President Ramaphosa said Russia remained an important partner to South Africa and Africa at large, as evidenced by its support for countries of the South in multilateral fora and associations such as Brics. President Putin reciprocated by congratulating President Ramaphosa on his assumption of the Presidency and said the Russian Federation stood ready to deepen bilateral relations, notably in the economic terrain," Ramaphosa's office said.
"President Ramaphosa looks forward to hosting President Putin at the Brics Summit in July, which wil signify the beginning of the second decade of cooperation among this group of emerging markets which have a range of developmental advances and challenges in common."