On April 14, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and South African Minister of International Relations and Cooperation Maite Nkoana-Mashabane signed a Memorandum of Understanding to formally launch the U.S. – South Africa Strategic Dialogue. Secretary Clinton and Minister Nkoana-Mashabane proposed the creation of this mechanism last year during the Secretary’s August visit to South Africa. The Memorandum of Understanding is intended to establish a framework for bilateral cooperation.
The Strategic Dialogue will reinforce cooperation between the two countries in key areas, such as health, education, food security, law enforcement, trade, investment, energy, and nonproliferation.
Secretary Clinton and Minister Nkoana-Mashabane will lead the Strategic Dialogue. The Strategic Dialogue will be informed by meetings of the Annual Bilateral Forum (ABF). The ABF will meet annually in Pretoria to review the work of various existing and potential bilateral issue-based working groups and also identify goals for the bilateral relationship. The next ABF is scheduled for May 12-13 in Pretoria. Ambassador Donald H. Gips will lead these meetings for the United States. A joint summary document produced by the ABF will inform Strategic Dialogue meetings, which could be held annually.