Botswana’s Trade and Industry minister, Minister Moroka, speaks at SAIIA

Botswana Minister speaks at SAIIA about his country’s decision to sign the IEPAs
Botswana Minister speaks at SAIIA about his country’s decision to sign the IEPAs

In July SAIIA hosted a number of foreign dignitaries on subjects ranging from Europe-Africa relations, to global nuclear security and trade relations, proving unequivocally that it is at the forefront of debate on some of the most pressing issues affecting the region, the continent and the world.

On 16 July, Jan Smuts House hosted Mr Neo Moroka, Botswana’s Trade and Industry minister. Minister Moroka spoke to a large gathering of foreign and South African government representatives, journalists and trade analysts about Botswana’s decision to sign an Interim Economic Partnership Agreement (IEPA) with the European Union (EU).

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In his talk, Minister Moroka reiterated that Botswana’s decision to sign the IEPA in June was motivated purely by imperatives to secure its immediate commercial interests and that it had no interest in upsetting geopolitical relations. He pointed out that the EU was the largest market for its two chief exports – diamonds and beef – and that failing to sign the IEPA would have affected 600 000 Batswana and would have resulted in a P500 million loss in beef exports alone.

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