The second session of the South Africa-Malawi Joint Commission for Cooperation (JCC) begins in South Africa’s administrative capital, Pretoria (Tshwane) on Friday, September 7.
The session is expected to be co-chaired by South Africa’s Deputy Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Ebrahim Ebrahim, and his Malawian counterpart, Ephraim Mganda Chiume, who is leading the Malawi delegation.
According to South African Government News Agency, the JCC meeting follows the visits to South Africa by Malawi’s President Joyce Banda in April 2012 and July 2012 respectively.
The aim of the JCC is to promote political, economic and social cooperation between the two southern African countries.
“During the JCC meeting, bilateral discussions between the two delegations will focus, among others, on economic cooperation, political and security matters of mutual interest and issues related to Malawi’s economic recovery,” says a report on SAnews.gov.za.
The report quotes The Department of International Relations and Cooperation saying that since the JCC Agreement was signed in May 2007 there had been greater bilateral cooperation between Pretoria and Lilongwe.
“There was a noticeable economic cooperation between the two countries as evidenced by a large number of South African companies operating in Malawi,” it says.
In July 2012, during President Banda’s second visit to South Africa in that capacity, ministers from the two countries also discussed a number of bilateral issues affecting the two nations mainly how they could strengthen their relationship in the areas of trade and new investments.
Malawi’s Finance Minister, Ken Lipenga led the Malawi team.
Trade relations show that Malawi was South Africa’s ninth largest export destination in Africa and ranked 10th with regard to South Africa’s imports from the continent.