Africa, Russia-Ukraine War

Germany, South Africa discuss Russia-Ukraine war, bilateral ties

South African president, visiting German chancellor meets in Pretoria

Hassan Isilow   | 24.05.2022
Germany, South Africa discuss Russia-Ukraine war, bilateral ties A screenshot of a joint press briefing by German Chancellor (L), South African President (R)

JOHANNESBURG 

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa on Tuesday discussed the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war and bilateral relations.

“Our position is that we like dialogue and negotiations. We have been consistent on that. We know its value,” Cyril Ramaphosa said in a joint media briefing with Scholz in the capital Pretoria.

Although Ramaphosa has resisted calls to directly condemn Russia, a member of BRICS, a body made up of five major emerging economies that include Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, he called for cessation of hostilities and start of negotiations.


"Engagement, dialogue and negotiation. I don't see any other way,” the South African president said.

He said there is a need for the international community to encourage dialogue and negotiations toward a peaceful resolution to the conflict urging that his country managed to end apartheid through a similar manner.

Scholz, for his part, said the war that Russia has imposed on Ukraine is brutal and should stop as soon as possible for the global benefit.

He said ending the war will save many lives who would otherwise die.

The two also discussed the pursuit of peace and security on the African continent.


Strengthen bilateral ties

The two leaders also discussed ways to increase trade and investment between their countries.

“South Africa is currently home to around 600 German companies and bilateral trade between our two countries is growing,” Ramaphosa said.

He said Germany is committed to support South Africa’s efforts towards industrialization, infrastructure development and job creation.

“The Federal Republic of Germany has been a dependable supporter of our efforts to manage the COVID-19 pandemic. We have expressed our gratitude to Chancellor Scholz for the assistance Germany has given not just to South Africa, but the entire African continent,” the South African president said.

Scholz, and his delegation will later visit Sasol, an integrated energy and chemical company based in South Africa where they will launch a partnership for the development of carbon emissions reduction technologies, including green hydrogen.

Scholz, who embarked on a three-nation visit to Africa on Sunday, visited Senegal and Niger before arriving in South Africa.

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