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SA, Zambia take bilateral relations to next level

South Africa and Zambia have committed to strengthening bilateral relations on the region’s common agenda relating to peace, security and economic integration.President Cyril Ramaphosa recently hosted Zambian President Edgar Chagwa. International relations Minister Lindiwe Sisulu was part of the South African delegation.

The commitments were made between President Cyril Ramaphosa, chair of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and Zambian President Edgar Chagwa Lungu during a courtesy visit.

Zambia is set to take over from Angola as the incoming chair of the Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Co-operation.

The meeting formed part of President Ramaphosa’s current round of consultations with leaders of SADC member states. President Ramaphosa recently visited Angola, Namibia and Botswana.

“Historic relations between South Africa and Zambia were concretised when the African National Congress established its headquarters in Lusaka during our shared struggle for liberation. This led to the existing deep and solid bonds of friendship between the peoples of South Africa and Zambia,” said President Ramaphosa.

Structured bilateral co-operation between South Africa and Zambia formerly took place under the framework of the Joint Commission for Co-operation (JCC), which was signed on 18 October 2005.

During the second session of the JCC held in Zambia from 9 to 11 October 2017, the two countries agreed to elevate the JCC to a Bi-National Commission (BNC). South Africa is expected to host the inaugural session of the BNC in 2018.