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European Council commits to assisting Africa to produce fertiliser, says presidency

Amanda Khoza Presidency reporter
President Cyril Ramaphosa received a courtesy call from EU Council president Charles Michel on Tuesday.
President Cyril Ramaphosa received a courtesy call from EU Council president Charles Michel on Tuesday.
Image: GCIS

Africa is a step closer to producing fertiliser after President Cyril Ramaphosa and EU Council president Charles Michel agreed on a way forward.

“A joint project plan was agreed to assist Africa in developing its own fertiliser production capacity,” said presidency spokesperson Vincent Magwenya.

Ramaphosa received a courtesy call from Michel on Tuesday morning.

The agreement comes after the president proposed to G7 countries at last month's summit in Germany that the continent be enabled to invest in developing fertiliser to deal with food insecurity.

“We want African countries to be self-reliant when it comes to fertiliser production and we are going to be working with the G7 countries to see how best we can reach that level,” Ramaphosa told world leaders there.

During Tuesday's meeting Ramaphosa welcomed the EU's commitment to supporting Africa in achieving food security and becoming self-reliant, Magwenya said.

“The bilateral meeting centred on cementing the South Africa-EU strategic partnership and discussing key trade and peace and security issues.”

The EU is SA’s largest trading partner as a bloc, he said.

“Since the adoption of the Trade, Development and Co-operation Agreement (TDCA), total trade increased from R150bn in 2000 to R843bn in 2021. Exports to the EU increased steadily over the years, growing from R64bn in 2000 to R482bn in 2021.

“During the same period, imports from the EU increased from R86bn in 2000 to R361bn in 2021,” Magwenya said.

Ramaphosa also welcomed the “reflection of strengthening and growing existing bilateral trade ties and the commitment to resolve current and urgent trade matters, particularly on the export of citrus products from South Africa to the EU.

“President Ramaphosa supported the process of further discussions to be held at ministerial level to work out a solution that will allow for sustained trade in the citrus subsector,” Magwenya said.

On peace and security matter, he said the president was encouraged by the EU’s support of the Southern African Development Community’s (Sadc) efforts to stabilise security in Mozambique.

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