Russia-Ukraine war takes centre stage during Ramaphosa, Scholz discussions

Russia-Ukraine war takes centre stage during Ramaphosa, Scholz discussions

President Cyril Ramaphosa says South Africa will continue trade and investment with Germany following the Covid-19 pandemic.

Russia-Ukraine war takes centre stage during Ramaphosa, Scholz discussions

Ramaphosa hosted German Chancellor Olaf Scholz at the Union Buildings on Tuesday.

While the chancellor’s visit is meant to strengthen economic ties between the two countries, the issue of the ongoing war between Ukraine and Russia was also high up on the agenda.

Scholz said his country will continue supplying weapons to Ukraine to defend its sovereignty.

"The big concern for all of us is the war Russia imposed on Ukraine, the brutal war we have to say it like this, and it is necessary for peace in the world that this war stops as soon as possible. We are making it feasible for Ukraine to defend its country, they must find against a foreign aggressor that is trying to change borders by force, which we cannot accept.

"We decided to impose sanctions against Russia to convince the leadership that they should stop the war, and we will stop the import of coal from Russia from autumn this year because there are a lot of suppliers all over the globe like South Africa for instance."

Ramaphosa again defended his government's decision to not vote to condemn the Russian invasion at the United Nations.

"We would like negotiations and dialogue to underpin engagements with Russia on this matter and we have been fairly consistent. Because we know the value of dialogue that also gave birth to our own democracy as a country as a result of negotiations and that is the position, we have articulated to President Zelensky and President Putin as well." 

Ramaphosa said his government will work with Germany to reindustrialise the local economy.

"We look forward to deepening trade and investment ties with Germany around the green economy, clean energy, and building climate resilience as we embark on new technologies such as hydrogen.

"This is a path-breaking initiative to support the country's low carbon economy and climate resilience society to accelerate the just transition and decarbonisation of the electricity system and support the development of new economic opportunities."


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