President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Mr President,
Please accept my heartfelt greetings.
Our previous meeting took place in July 2018 in Johannesburg. Today I want to congratulate you once again on the victory of your party, African National Congress, in the general election in May and you personally on re-election as president. I wish you good luck and every success.
We assign high priority to developing our multidimensional relations with South Africa. Specific steps to promote our bilateral overarching strategic partnership were formalised in the joint statement we adopted last year in Johannesburg.
Our close cooperation at the international arena will continue. I hope that we will further promote everything that has been achieved over the previous years, including with your participation.
We welcome South Africa’s efforts as a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council in 2019 and 2020 and highly appreciate the results of South Africa’s presidency in BRICS in 2018. This November, we are to work together in Brazil within the framework of BRICS and next summer the five countries’ meeting will take place in Russia.
Mr President, we hope to see you in Sochi at the first Russia–Africa summit in October and just before the summit, on October 23, there will be a major economic forum. With due regard to our special, good-hearted and warm allied relationship, we rely on your assistance, Mr President, in preparing for this summit.
President of South Africa Cyril Ramaphosa: Thank you very much, President Putin. I want to welcome this opportunity to meet with you once again. It is always a great pleasure to have discussions and consultations with yourselves.
I’d like to start by thanking you for the congratulatory message that you sent, but especially the envoy that you sent to represent you at the inauguration.
I would like to reaffirm the importance that I personally attach, as well as South Africa attaches, to the relationship that we have with your country. This partnership builds on the bonds of friendship that were forged many many years ago during our period of struggle, when the Soviet Union supported us very actively and practically. A support that we continue to enjoy with the Russian Federation under your leadership. We really appreciate that.
I also would like to appreciate the cooperation that we enjoy and have as members of BRICS. You continue to support the various efforts that we make in BRICS and indeed, in a number of other international fora. Our continued cooperation, not only at the UN, the UN Security Council and many other international fora is something that strengthens us and we really appreciate that.
We look forward to coming to Sochi, and we thank you for your invitation. I am hoping that our participation there will continue to deepen and advance our relationship. And I know that I still have an outstanding visit to Russia, and I would like to take that invitation up. We will be discussing the dates when that should best happen. So it’s something that we have at the top of our mind because we look forward to that opportunity to further deepen relations between our two countries on a number of issues, social, economic, cultural, technological, and in many other ways.
Our relationship with the Russian Federation is a very special one, and we thank you for being able to meet us.