[in] focus

The WTO’s Road from Bali: A South African Perspective

DrBrendanvickersThe 9th World Trade Organisation (WTO) Ministerial Conference was held in Bali, Indonesia from 3-7 December 2013. Under the stewardship of the new WTO Director-General, Roberto de Azevêdo, the Ministerial Conference delivered the first outcome of the Doha Round after a prolonged impasse that dates back to 2008.

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Russia’s Coming Out Party? Public Diplomacy Success at Sochi

ProfGeoffreyAllenPigmanThe resounding success of the Olympic Games at Sochi by many measures has probably surprised the global public, given the drumbeat of negative media coverage in the runup to the opening ceremonies. Russia's public diplomacy at Sochi has indeed been successful, but it has achieved a different kind of success from what we have come to expect in recent times. As a Great Power, Russia has said to the world in a straightforward and unvarnished way, 'get to know us better, this is how we really are for good and for ill, deal with it.'

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South Africa and ASEAN countries: the need for strategic partnerships

dlaminiThe relationship between South Africa and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) is promising with the ASEAN recently pledging to boost search for ways to increase cooperation in areas of investment, trade and tourism in South Africa. This comes after the ASEAN Pretoria Committee (APC) a committee of diplomats representing the interest of ASEAN member states in South Africa, held its first meeting of 2014 to discuss ways of strengthening multifaceted cooperation between ASEAN and South Africa.

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The 2014 Nuclear Security Summit and US-SA cooperation

scottfirsing80This year (2014) the Netherlands will host the 2014 Nuclear Security Summit (NSS) on the 24-25 March. The United States' President Barack Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping have already confirmed their attendance. As of writing, confirmation is still being awaited on whether South African President Jacob Zuma will attend.

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The Opportunities of Davos


The World Economic Forum’s 2014 Davos Annual Meeting has begun. Over 2500 world leaders from business, government, NGOs, academe, the media and religious communities from close to 100 countries will attend, including more than 30 heads of state and government.

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