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Media statement by President Jacob Zuma, at the conclusion of the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) Leaders’ Summit

Members of the Media
Ladies and gentlemen
I would like to extend my sincere appreciation to His Excellency, President Joko Widodo, and the people of Indonesia for the warm hospitality we have received.
I also extend my sincere appreciation to the IORA Troika of Foreign Ministers for their leadership of the Association.
The Indian Ocean Rim Association has grown in stature due to their guidance and robust leadership.

I would further wish to extend my sincere appreciation to Ambassador Bhagirath, the Secretary-General, for his sterling leadership of the  Secretariat. 
The Leaders’ Summit was very successful.
We celebrated a significant milestone in the history of the Association, namely 20 years of existence. 
With the adoption and signing of the IORA Concord and its Action Plan for implementation that the Council of Ministers will take forward, we are well placed to take IORA into the next decade.
The Concord has greatly elevated the status of the Association. We look forward to all the Members signing the document in due course. 
South Africa welcomes the key outcome of the Business Summit, which was the Declaration signed between the Chambers of Commerce and business communities of IORA Member States.
Their support and involvement is critical to us achieving our goals of greater economic cooperation that are enshrined in the IORA Charter.
South Africa takes pride in being one of the founding Member States. The Association owes its conceptual foundation to South Africa’s President Nelson Mandela.
We look forward to welcoming Members of IORA to South Africa when we assume the IORA Chair from Indonesia. 
I am pleased that we will continue to work with Indonesia very closely in the IORA Troika as we strive to ensure continuity and the consolidation of the solid platform that was laid by Indonesia, Australia and India as IORA Chairs before us.
I thank you.