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Peters to visit South Africa, Zambia

Rt Hon Winston Peters
Minister of Foreign Affairs

15 February 2008

Peters to visit South Africa, Zambia

Foreign Minister Winston Peters leaves on Sunday for a bilateral visit to South Africa and Zambia.

In South Africa, Mr Peters will meet Deputy President Mlambo-Ngcuka, Foreign Minister Dlamini Zuma, and several other government ministers.

“South Africa is New Zealand’s most important partner in sub-Saharan Africa. We share historic and traditional ties, and a large number of South Africans now call New Zealand home,” Mr Peters said.

“South Africa is our largest trading partner in the region and an international leader. We share an interest in many issues, from disarmament to Antarctica, where we can work more closely. There is also great potential for building deeper trade, cultural and people-to-people links between our countries.”

In Zambia, Mr Peters will meet President Mwanawasa, Foreign Minister Pande, and Finance and National Planning Minister Magende. He will also visit several aid projects to which New Zealand contributes funding.

“New Zealand’s primary development focus is the Pacific, but our work extends further afield, and includes Africa. This reflects the concern of ordinary New Zealanders, who give generously to a range of poverty relief causes in Africa, and who respond to humanitarian needs in times of disaster.

“Zambia has been a priority for our southern African aid programme for several years. It is one of the region’s poorest countries, but it is making a concerted effort to lift living standards, and I look forward to discussing with the government the future direction of our contribution to Zambia’s efforts.”

ENDS

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