June 13, 2017
Joint Statement: 8th South African – United States Annual Bilateral Forum, 8 June 2017
The Embassy of the United States of America hosted the South African Government for the 8th Annual Bilateral Forum (ABF), on 8 June 2017, in Pretoria.
The ABF takes place under the auspices of the South Africa-United States Strategic Dialogue, which was established in 2010 by the former United States Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, and the South African Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane. The meeting was co-chaired by the United States Chargé d’ Affaires, Jessica Lapenn, and the Chief Director: North America and Regional Organisations in the Department of International Relations and Cooperation, Ambassador Peter Goosen.
The ABF meets annually to review cooperation between the two nations across a range of sectors, covering areas such as education, agriculture, health, economic development, trade and investment, energy, water, protocol and administration, environment, transportation, science and technology, defence, and safety and security.
The various ABF Working Groups have been streamlined to ensure greater synergy between cross-cutting sectors and to facilitate greater coordination. This annual engagement also provided an opportunity to track progress of the different projects and to ensure maximum alignment of the development support being received from the United States with South Africa’s national priorities.
The meeting noted successes in the areas of health, education, science and technology, water, transport, environment and safety and security, which were highlighted during the engagements.
Both Chargé d’ Affaires Lapenn and Ambassador Goosen accentuated the importance of the ABF as an instrument that provides a demonstration of the good and warm relations that exits between the United States of America and South Africa. The centrality and mutual benefit of a strong trade and investment relationship for both countries was also underscored during the meeting.
Both parties looked forward to a continuation and further strengthening of the cordial bilateral relations under the new Administration in the United States.
For more information: Embassy Spokesperson Cindy Harvey: USEmbassySApress@state.gov