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South African Embassy, Berlin
Tiergartenstr. 18, 10785 Berlin
Tel.: +49-30-22073-0
Fax: +49-30-22073-190

Topnews, Press, FIFA World Cup 2010, Embassy

07. December 2009

PRESS RELEASE: The World’s eyes are on South Africa - Event of the Embassy of the Republic South Africa in Berlin on the occasion of the FIFA World Cup 2010 draw

[Translate to Englisch:] final draw screening in berlin

Berlin, 4 December 2009. In 188 days the FIFA Soccer World Cup 2010 will start in South Africa; today, more than 200 guests met at the invitation of the Ambassador of the Republic of South Africa, H.E. Sonwabo Funde, in the Berlin representation of the Deutsche Telekom AG, among them many diplomats of the 32 nations that have qualified for the WC. Together they followed the draw and within the framework of a panel discussion discussed topics directly and indirectly linked to the soccer event.

The host Ambassador Funde was delighted and said, “We South Africans proved our enthusiasm for soccer already during the Confederations Cup and also our ability to excellently prepare such a sporting mega event.”  

The participants agreed about the multi-faceted significance of the WC for the country at the Cape. Willy Lemke, Special Commissioner for Sport and Development, said in a video message from South Africa, “The FIFA Soccer World Cup opens new possibilities to the country and partly the entire continent for sustainable development, especially the “20 centres for 2010” within the framework of the “Football for Hope” of the FIFA and streetfootballworld do so with regard to sustainable social development.”

Dagmar Freitag, chairperson of the sports Committee of the German Bundestag who was also present, emphasised the investment incentive of the first Soccer WC on the African continent but also said, “sport in general and especially soccer play a big role in the fields of social cohesion and societal development. That applies to South Africa as well as to our society.”

Ambassador Funde added, “The public investments in the infrastructure of the transport system, energy generation and telecommunication as well as in the construction of sports facilities amount roughly to 5 billion Euros. The private sector invested a further 2,5 billion in hotels and the tourism infrastructure in South Africa.”

Information series continued
Three briefings in which about 700 multipliers and media representatives participated have already taken place at the Embassy in Berlin. The focus of the opening event on 27 May 2008 was on the bilateral cooperation of South Africa with Germany as well as on the topic of safety and security. An important element was the presentation of the projects of the German partners who use the WC as catalyst for sustainable development in South Africa and other African states. Represented were the Foreign Office, the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, InWEnt (International Capacity Building) gGmbH, and the streetfootballworld gGmbH. The Deputy Police Commissioner André Pruis informed the guests about the additional security measures for the 2010 FIFA Soccer World Cup.

High-profile Experts
The second information event took place on 14 October 2008 and dealt with the topics of transport and infrastructure as well as the current state of the preparations for the FIFA WC 2010 in general. Top-class speakers such as Dr. Danny Jordaan, head of the South African Organising Committee, the DFB Treasurer Horst R. Schmidt in his capacity as advisor for the FIFA WC 2010 as well as Hans Klaus, FIFA Communications Director, could be won for the event. On this occasion in the embassy the official mascot Zakumi had his first appearance outside South Africa.

The third event dealt with the topics entitled “Football for Hope” and “20 Centres for 2010” about which the head of the FIFA section for Social Responsibility, Federico Addiechi, reported together with Jürgen Griesbeck, Managing Director of streetfootballworld gGmbH.

Willy Lemke, UN Special Representative for Sports, as well as Erich Stather, Secretary of State in the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), took part in the fourth event and discussed the opportunities and challenges of sustainable development within the context of the FIFA WC 2010 with further experts.

Nobel Peace Laureate Desmond Tutu commented at the fifth event six weeks ago on the positive effects of the WC on the South African society and Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Maennig of Hamburg University on the expected positive medium and long-term effects for the economy.

The sixth event took place in Düsseldorf on the evening before a soccer test match between Germany and South Africa, which was played on 4 September in Leverkusen. At the invitation of the North Rhine-Westphalian Minister for Generations, Family Affairs, Women and Integration, Armin Laschet, and the Ambassador of the Republic of South Africa, H.E. Sonwabo Funde, about 200 personalities and representatives of numerous organisations met in order to obtain information about programmes and projects that take the sporting mega event next year as an occasion to fast-track the further development of the South African society and economy.

Further information at www.suedafrika.org

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