South Africa is once more setting out to turn its turn of hosting the BRICS Summit into an Africa wide affair in a rhythm established 2013 during the fifth BRICS Summit in Durban.
This time around, as South Africa hosts the 10th Summit, from the 25th to 27th July at the Sandton Convention Center, the country has designed an extensive outreach program in and around the summit. This determination was cemented in the 2018 budget speech of the minister of international relations and cooperation, Lindiwe Sisulu.
She said “the African Continent is and will remain central to South Africa’s foreign policy imperatives.”
Reaching out to African leaders
She said South Africa has determined that an Outreach will again be held with African leaders to ensure both continuity from 2013 and BRICS support for African industrialisation and infrastructure development.
In this regard, said Sisulu, based on the formula agreed with the AU in 2013 the following countries have been invited to the 10th BRICS Summit:
- Rwanda as Chair of the African Union (AU), Senegal as Chair of the NEPAD HSGIC,
- Gabon as Chair of the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS),
- Uganda as Chair of the East African Community (EAC),
- Ethiopia as Chair of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD),
- Togo as Chair of the Economic Community of West Africa States (ECOWAS),
- Burundi as incoming Chair of the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA),
- Namibia as incoming Chair of the Southern African Development Community (SADC),
- Angola as Chair of the SADC Organ, and
- the Chair of the African Union Commission have been invited.
Also intited are the the President of the African Development Bank, the Head of the NEPAD Agency and the Secretary-Generals of the six RECs, are also being invited to attend.
Sisulu further noted that “In the interest of ensuring maximum synergy between South Africa’s Chairship of BRICS and that of China in 2017, the BRICS Inter-Ministerial Committee determined that, as part of its BRICS Chairship in 2018, South Africa will also host the BRICS Plus Outreach on the margins of the 10th BRICS Summit. The countries invited in this regard are:
- Argentina (as Chair of the G20 and influential MERCOSUR member),
- Indonesia (as Co-Chair of the New Africa-Asia Strategic Partnership with South Africa and influential ASEAN member),
- Egypt (as Chair of the G77+China),
- Jamaica (as incoming Chair of CARICOM), and
- Turkey (as Chair of the OIC).
South Africa has also invited the UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, to attend the BRICS Plus dialogue session.