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Newsletter of the South African Embassy in Berlin

Foreword by H.E. Ambassador Phumelele Stone Sizani

Dear readers, friends of South Africa,

As 2019 draws to a close, let us pause for a moment to reflect on the year that was, and some of the milestones that were attained. In his State of the Nation Address President Ramaphosa highlighted several key priorities from which the Embassy derived its core objectives, namely, to accelerate inclusive economic growth and create employment opportunities, improve the education system and develop the skills that South Africa requires now and into the future and to improve the conditions of life for all South Africans, especially the poor.

In this regard, the Embassy Co-Hosted a High-Level Business Seminar on Investing in South Africa in March and, hosted an International Tourism Bourse Kick-Off Event for South African Exhibitors. We further maintained a national pavilion at ProWein and participated in the Fruit Logistika International Fair. On 26 April 2019, the Embassy hosted National Day celebrations to commemorate South Africa’s 25th Year of Democracy. We were again honoured to commemorate International Nelson Mandela Day on 18 July; by dedicating 67 minutes of services, working alongside the hardworking volunteers of the Bahnhofsmission Zoologischer Garten.

Throughout the year, the Embassy further participated in several investment drives, including a High-Level Business Conference "Meet Africa" in Stuttgart and the 78th Top Lounge Event, apart from others. Most recently, Minister Mboweni, the Hon. Minister of Finance supported by the Embassy participated in the G20 Compact with Africa Investment Summit and Compact with Africa Conference hosted by Chancellor Dr Merkel.

2019 will also see the conclusion of the first year of South Africa’s term as a Non-Permanent Member of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC). This is South Africa’s third term as a Non-Permanent Member of the UNSC. South Africa and Germany are currently serving together as Non-Permanent Members of the UNSC.

South Africa also hosted its second successful Investment Summit, in which more than 90 German companies participated.

In the spirit of the motto which inspired the Springboks to their historic Rugby World Cup Triumph, “Stronger Together”, please allow me to express on behalf of the Embassy of South Africa, to my fellow South Africans residing in Germany, South African stakeholders, our German partners and dearest friends of South Africa, our heartfelt gratitude for your support throughout the year, indeed we are “stronger together”.

Let me also leverage this opportunity to extend to you and your families our best wishes for a blessed festive season and a prosperous and Happy New Year.

We hope you will enjoy the read!

With warmest regards

Ambassador Stone Sizani Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of South Africa to the Federal Republic of Germany

(Picture Credit: fotodesign-klaus-dombrowsky.de)



MISSION AT WORK: INFORMING THE NARRATIVE - INFLUENCING THE SPACE

South African Minister of Finance Mboweni Attends G20 Investment Summit of German Business and the Compact with Africa Countries (CwA)

On the morning of 19 November South African Minister of Finance Tito Titus Mboweni attended the G20 Investment Summit of German Business and the Compact with Africa Countries (CwA), under the patronage of Dr Angela Merkel, Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany. This high-level dialogue served to discuss opportunities to enhance the business environment and increase investment in African countries. Minister Mboweni delivered a keynote address on the G20 perspectives on the Compact with Africa. In the afternoon Minister Mboweni participated in the Conference on the G20 Compact with Africa at the Federal Chancellery.



Minister Plenipotentiary Cassimjee Attends Panel Discussion "From "Ramaphoria to Disillusionment?"

On Thursday, 14 November 2019 Minister Plenipotentiary Cassimjee attended the Panel Discussion "South Africa: From "Ramaphoria to Disillusionment?" organised by Friedrich-Naumann Foundation and the German-South African Forum (DeSaFor e.V.). The panel featured Jakkie Cilliers, Chaiman of the Board of Trustees, Institute for Security Studies, Sabine Dall'omo, CEO of Siemens South- and East Africa, Moeletsi Mbeki, Political Analyst and Entrepreneur and was moderated by Mr Bussmann, Chair of DeSaFor and Ms Georgousaki, Naumann Foundation. Despite the open, constructive and frank discussion by the analysts on the panel, positivity regarding Ramaphosa's new way and his political and economic leadership largely prevailed. This is also reflected in the resulsts of a live poll undertaken at the end of the event and in which 55% of attendees responded to leave the event with a largely positive feeling towards South Africa!



SA Mission Hosts Delegation of the South African Ministry of Arts and Culture, the South African Heritage Resources Agency and Freedom Park

From 30 October to 3 November 2019 senior representatives of the South African Ministry of Arts and Culture, the South African Heritage Resources Agency and Freedom Park, chaired by Mr Vusithemba Ndima, Deputy Director General, paid a benchmarking visit to selected Berlin memorials. Following a courtesy call to H. E. Mr P. S. Sizani, Ambassador of the Republic of South Africa in Germany, they visited the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, the Jewish Museum of Berlin, the Sachsenhausen Memorial and Museum in Oranienburg, and met with their directors for in-depth discussions. Furthermore, they visited the Topography of Terror, the Memorial to the Victims of National Socialist “Euthanasia” Killings, the Memorial to the Murdered Sinti and Roma in Europe, and the Memorial to the Homosexuals Persecuted under the National Socialist Regime.



South Africa and Germany - Partners in advocating multilateralism and collective action

Mr Zaheer Laher, Acting Chief Director: United Nations Peace and Security of the Department of International Relations and Cooperation was on a Working Visit to Berlin during which, supported by the Embassy, Mr Laher met and exchanged views with Mr Andreas Künne, Director for the United Nations at the Federal Foreign Office, as well as with representatives of the Körber Foundation, the Konrad Adenauer Foundation and participated in a panel discussion on African agency through multilateralism.

South Africa and Germany are jointly serving concurrent terms on the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) as Non-Permanent Members.



South Africa at ANUGA

42 South African companies participated in the reputable, international fair, Anuga. This fair took place in Cologne, on the 5-9 October 2019. The dti’s team that led the business delegation to Anuga Trade Fair, commenced the show's programme with a briefing session. In his remarks the Minister-Counsellor Economic, Mr Jacob Moatshe reflected on the sound economic relation between the two countries, and the critical importance of Germany as a market for South Africa, the largest market in Europe, the 3rd largest trade partner globally. He further encouraged South African companies to leverage some of the German initiatives which are meant to facilitate market access and stimulate economic development of the African continent.



Minister Plenipotentiary Cassimjee Attends African Ambassadors Dialogue

Minister Plenipotentiary Cassimjee represented the Mission at the African Ambassadors Dialogue hosted by the State Ministry for Economy, Road Traffic, Agriculture and Viticulture held at the IKH (Business Chamber Rheinhessen) in partnership with Afrika Verein on promotion of Trade and Investment with Africa and South Africa. This first ever conference was hosted due to the increased focus by the German Government on Africa and in this regard Dr Sonja Kreibich, Head of Division Sub-Saharan Africa at the Federal Foreign Office was invited as the key note speaker. A panel discussion with representatives of other designated diplomatic representatives and Ambassadors was also held, as well as a roundtable with German investors successfully investing in Africa and to a large extent South Africa.

The Minister Plenipotentiary Adv M.A Cassimjee briefed potential investors on the economic opportunities available in SA.



Ambassador Sizani Attends 78th Top Lounge Event Co-Hosted by Top Magazine and Brand SA

Ambassador Sizani delivered the keynote address at the 78th Top Lounge event co-hosted by Top Magazine and Brand SA on 1 October 2019. The Top Lounge Event is a regular high-level networking platform for decision makers. Ambassador Sizani, who was accompanied by Minister-Counsellor Economic, Jacob Moatshe addressed almost 300 executives from the Cologne region, presenting South Africa as a desired investment destination with immense business opportunities. This was followed by media interviews and networking sessions. South Africa was chosen as a 2019 partner country at the 78th Top Lounge edition.



Mission Hosts Successful Heritage Day 2019

On Friday, 27th September 2019, the South African Ambassador to Germany, H.E. Phumelele Stone Sizani, in partnership with Brand South Africa's General Manager: Global Markets, Dr Judy Smith-Höhn, invited the South African Diaspora and friends for a Braai at the Embassy. Around 180 South Africans from all walks of life joined the Embassy staff in celebrating South Africa's diversity, enjoying the braai by Amandla Foods, wines by Bayede and icecream provided by Florida Eis! BrandSA organised a tombola as well as a South African Quiz with lots of prizes for adults and kids - all Proudly South African of course! South Africa's Maskandi Duo Qadasi & Maqhinga provided the music.

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Mission Visits Mercedes Benz Head Quarter in Stuttgart

On 5 September 2019 Ambassador Sizani and Minister Plen. Cassimjee travelled to Stuttgart with a threefold agenda: The first was to acknowledge the new Honorary Consul of South Africa for the States of Baden-Württemberg, Rheinland-Pfalz und Saarland, Mr Wilfried Porth. Secondly, the Mission wanted to officially recognise the huge investment made by Mercedes-Benz in South Africa including the 600 Mio Euros invested into the Launch of the C-Class. The plant in South Africa’s Eastern Cape province produces C‑Class Sedans for right-hand and left-hand drive markets for export. Since the production launch of the current C‑Class in May 2014, the plant has been producing the fourth generation of the highest volume model series of Mercedes-Benz. Since the summer of 2016, the C‑Class Sedan has also been rolling off the production line in East London as a plug-in hybrid.

Thirdly, the Embassy Management met with Dr Stefanie Hinz, Director of the Department Strategy, Law, Foreign Trade and European Affairs of Baden-Württemberg in view of deepening the ties and good relations and to discuss recent developments in South Africa.



Courtesy Visit by Archbishop Magkoba

On 27 August, the acting Anglican Archbishop of Cape Town, Thabo Makgoba paid a courtesy visit to Ambassador Sizani as part of a delegation from Konrad-Adenauer-Foundation including Dr. Renier Koegelenberg, Ecumenical Foundation of Southern Africa (EFSA), Dr. Volker Faigle, Personal Advisor of H.E. Makhoba in Germany, Mr. Henning Suhr, Resident Representative, Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung South Africa and Mr. Tilmann Feltes, Head of Section Southern Africa, Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung Berlin.

Archbishop Thabo Makgoba is the youngest person ever to be elected Archbishop of Cape Town and is currently also the Chancellor of the University of the Western Cape (2012).



NEWS FROM SOUTH AFRICA

South Africa Hosts Successful 2nd Investment Conference

The total value of investment commitments made at the second instalment of the South Africa Investment Conference tally up to R363 billion, President Ramaphosa announced on the closing day of the conference. This, the President highlighted, is 17% higher than the R300 billion in investments made at the conference’s debut in 2018 where the President announced his intention to attract R1.2 trillion over five years.

“We are immensely encouraged as South Africans by the investment commitments made. We believe that those investments will boost the economic growth of the country and will create many new jobs,” said President Ramaphosa.

|+| read more on Facebook



President Ramaphosa's New Weekly Briefing: "From the Desk of the President"

In September 2019, President Cyril Ramaphosa launched a weekly newsletter that will serve as an update on all matters that affect South Africa. In a direct and frank way, the President communicates to the public the progress made in implementing change. The President tackles sensitive issues such as load shedding or the violence against women and children as well as the state of the economy or the effect on society of the Rugby World Cup triumph. The newsletter has been very positively received by leading political experts.

|+| read the articles



Springboks Win Third World Cup Title

On 2 November 2019, South Africa's Rugby Team, the Springboks, have captured their third Rugby World Cup championship, defeating a favored England team, 32-12, and extending the dominance of teams from the Southern Hemisphere in the tournament. South Africa also won the title in 1995 and 2007; it is the only country to win every Rugby World Cup final it has contested.

"The sight of Springbok captain Siyamthanda Kolisi lifting the cup at the Yokohama Stadium on Saturday filled me with great pride." President Ramaphosa wrote, "At a time when South Africa is experiencing profound challenges, we have rallied around the victory in Japan. The outpouring of support for the Springboks on the road to the final once again showed the immense potential of sport to unite us as a people."



Green Talents

Kathryn Arnold, Master’s Student in Engineering Geomatics from South Africa, is one of the 25 young promising researchers, who have been selected for the Green Talent Awards, which were handed out at the Networking Conference of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research in Berlin on 24 October 2019. Kathryn's spatially distributed population projection data will help to plan sustainable settlements. Thus her research is of significant importance for South Africa as well as internationally.

The awardees have been invited to visit German research institutions, universities and organisations involved in sustainability science and discuss their projects with local experts. In 2020 they will return to Germany for a fully funded research stay at an institution of their choice.



SOCIAL EVENTS

Mandela: The Official Exhibition in Berlin's BIKINI Mall until 15 March 2020

"Mandela: The Official Exhibition" is the major new global touring exhibition that takes visitors on a personal journey through the life of Nelson Mandela, one of the world’s most iconic freedom fighters and political leaders. The exhibition features previously unseen films, photos and the display of over 150 historical artefacts and personal effects on loan from the Mandela family, museums and archives worldwide. This unprecedented exhibition provides fresh insight into the people, places and events that formed his character and the challenges he faced. Discover Nelson Mandela as you have never known him. Mandela: The Official Exhibition – freedom is neither black nor white, runs until March 15th, 2020 at Bikini Berlin. A portion of the exhibition proceeds will be given to the Mvezo Development Trust to support economic development programs in South Africa’s Eastern Cape.

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African Angels Tour

Starting in December and going until February 2020, the "African Angels - Cape Town Opera Chorus" will be in various German cities including Berlin's Philharmonie. Cape Town Opera’s African Angels has travelled internationally with great success since 2013. A distinctive mix of popular operatic repertoire, African traditional and gospel music, the programme showcases the exceptional voices and stylistic versatility of CTO’s ensemble. This vibrant show is directed by Tara Notcutt and choreographed by Luthando Tsodo with musical direction by Jose Dias and CTO Chorus Master, Marvin Kernelle.

Audiences can enjoy Wagner’s rousing Pilgrims Chorus, Mascagni’s Ave Maria, and classics from Show Boat as well as South African favourites which include music by Miriam Makeba and Brenda Fassie.

|+| read more & tickets



ANNOUNCEMENTS

Consular: Travelling with Chrildren

The Minister of Home Affairs Dr Aaron Motsoaledi on Friday, 8 November 2019 signed a waiver which allows foreign children to enter the country without carrying additional supporting documents such as birth certificates and consent letters. The Department has communicated the changes to immigration officials at our ports of entry and to the airline and maritime industries.

South African children are still required to provide supporting documents, in line with the requirements of the Children’s Act. The same applies to unaccompanied foreign children.

Foreign children who require a visa for South Africa do not need to carry the supporting documents for inspection at a port of entry since these would be processed together with their visa applications.

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South African Citizens Register

Please help the South African Mission keep track of South African citizens currently residing in Germany. By voluntarily registering, you do assist the mission to determine the number of citizens living in the country and to be able to contact you and your family in South Africa in the event of an evacuation, natural disaster, family emergency etc. Furthermore, your contact details (which will be handled in a strictly confidential way) enable the Embassy to provide you with information related to Embassy events, registration for general election, etc. |+| go to register form



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The Newsletter of the Embassy of the Republic of South Africa features Embassy activities and other South African events in Germany.

The Newsletter is published quarterly and we invite you to share with us your comments and to also inform us if your city or community is organising an event that features South Africa, in any way. Please send us an email on webmaster(at)suedafrika.org and please visit our website: www.suedafrika.org 

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Play Your Part is a national initiative that encourages all South Africans to contribute to positive change. There are numerous opportunities, big and small, for each and every South African. |+| get involved

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Read the Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO)'s quarterly magazine Ubuntu – South Africa’s Public Diplomacy in action which communicates with and educates stakeholders on South Africa’s foreign policy positions, achievements, objectives and goals. |+| read online

 
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