International Relations and Cooperation Minister Lindiwe Sisulu has concluded her successful visit to Argentina, where she led a South African delegation at the G20 Meeting of Foreign Affairs Ministers. The meeting was held in preparation for the G20 Leaders' Summit, which will be held in November 2018. Argentina holds the rotating Presidency of the G20.
The meeting focused on strengthening multilateralism, improving global governance and achieving sustainable development. The Meeting also deliberated on gender issues, particularly the protection of the girl child in conflict areas. Furthermore, the meeting discussed fair trade, Africa free trade and partnership for development.
At a time when the world is experiencing numerous political and security challenges, including instances of unilateralism and protectionism, the meeting reaffirmed the centrality of the multilateral system, with the UN at its apex.
The G20 has a key role and stake in supporting a rules-based, open and fair multilateral trading system, anchored through the World Trade Organisation.
With the Fourth Industrial Revolution upon us, the Ministers agreed on the need to develop appropriate responses to mitigate the possible disruptive impact of digitisation on the world of work. South Africa's emphasis on the principle of inclusivity, focusing on science, technology and innovation was supported by many delegations. In this regard, Minister Sisulu noted that: "Measures should be taken to bridge the digital and physical infrastructure gap, through the transfer of technology, skills and financial resources."
The meeting further noted that, in the context of growing inequality between and within states, the G20 should promote inclusive growth with a specific focus on youth and women.
Minister Sisulu used the G20 platform to engage in bilateral discussions with several of her colleagues and secured their endorsement of South Africa's Candidature for the UNSC Seat for the period 2019-2020.
Minister Sisulu said: "South Africa will lend its support to Argentinian efforts to use the G20 as an effective instrument for promoting peace and development."
Minister Sisulu also engaged in a number of bilateral engagements, including with BRICS Ministers and UN Security Council members .
The South African delegation at the meeting included Deputy Minister Luwellyn Landers as well as senior officials.
Issued by: Department of International Relations and Cooperation