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17 December 2014

Commissioner Moedas visit to South Africa

Photo from the meeting Commissioner Moedas and SA Minister for Science and Technology, Naledi Pandor

Cape Town: Commissioner Moedas’ first visit outside the European Union since he took office as the EU Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation was to South Africa to launch the second European and Developing Countries Clinical Trials Partnership (EDCTP2) Programme. The Commissioner attended several other meetings such as a marine breakfast, the ERAfrica showcase, a dinner with South African women working in science, and had bilateral meetings with several African Ministers and other global health stakeholders attending the Conference.

4 December 2014

CAAST-NET Plus workshop on EU-Africa collaboration in health

Cape Town: CAAST-Net Plus workshop on EU-Africa collaboration in health. The aim of the workshop was to identify niches to enhance EU-Africa health cooperation, focusing on finding new possibilities and mechanisms of collaboration rather than specific themes, including greater involvement by the private sector. The workshop featured interesting interventions from Najia Musolino, Council for Health R&D (COHRED), and John Mugabe, University of Pretoria, followed by an extended discussion on possible new developments and improvements.

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More News about South Africa


Policy Dialogue

The Trade, development and cooperation agreement (TDCA) constitutes the legal basis for the overall relations between South Africa and the EU. The TDCA covers political dialogue, the establishment of a free trade area over an asymmetrical twelve-year period, development co-operation, economic cooperation, and cooperation in a whole series of other areas. The agreement was signed in October 1999 and it entered into force in 2000.

The EU and South Africa have also established a Strategic Partnership, and adopted an Action Plan for its implementation in May 2007. The Action Plan has two strands: enhanced political dialogue and cooperation on regional, African and world issues, and stronger cooperation in a number of economic, social and other areas.

The Science and Technology Cooperation Agreement was concluded in 1996 and entered into force in November 1997. Scientific collaboration between South Africa and the EU is monitored and facilitated by the Joint Science and Technology Cooperation Committee (JSTCC), established under the Agreement. The last meeting took place in Cape Town on 6 November 2012.

Agreement  PDF icon 758 KB

Flagships of S&T Cooperation between South Africa and the EU are

  • The European and Developing Countries Clinical Trials Partnerships (EDCTP) was founded in 2003 to focus work of the European Commission and several EU Member States, in collaboration with African countries, into developing and testing of new medicines against HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis. The European Commission and South Africa have been very active in making EDCTP a success story. EDCTP currently supports 196 research projects; these include 57 clinical trials involving more than 100.000 patients. It has also helped train more than 300 African scientists.
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  • The Group on Earth Observations (GEO) is coordinating efforts to build a Global Earth Observation System of Systems, or GEOSS. GEOSS will provide decision-support tools to a wide variety of users. International collaboration is essential for exploiting the growing potential of Earth observations to support decision making. South Africa is co-chairing GEO and also co-chairs together with the USA and the EC a working group on GEO post-2015.
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  • Square Kilometre Array (SKA) is an iconic radio telescope array that will transform the way we see the universe, as well as being a driver of science, technology and innovation on an industrial scale. It is one of a few truly global facilities that will be built by a consortium of countries around the world. The EU and several Member States, in cooperation with South Africa, Australia and other non-European countries, have invested significant resources in the development of the Square Kilometre Array during the Sixth and Seventh Framework Programmes. South Africa will host the mid frequency part of the Array.
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ESASTAP Plus (2013-2016): Strengthening Technology, Research and Innovation Cooperation between Europe and South Africa. ESASTAP Plus is a dedicated platform that will support the deepening of scientific and technological cooperation between South Africa and the European Union with a special focus on innovation. This will be achieved by supporting South Africa's participation in Horizon 2020, but also by promoting reciprocal European participation in South African programmes. Specific input will be provided to enrich the bilateral policy dialogue, notably to identify priority areas for mutually beneficial cooperation. A major focus will be to target coordination of Member States and Associated Countries' research policies and programmes vis-à-vis South Africa, encouraging the development of new joint initiatives implemented by several countries. Synergy between different EU cooperation initiatives will also be encouraged, e.g. between development cooperation and research programmes.
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SAccess (2009-2012): Supporting the EU access to South Africa's research and innovation programmes. SAccess was aimed at enhancing scientific cooperation between South Africa and the EU by identifying and promoting to EU researcher's research collaboration opportunities through South Africa's research and innovation programmes. SAccess mapped, in close cooperation with South Africa's programme owners, existing opportunities for participation of EU researchers into S.A's national STI programmes. The information that was generated was disseminated via 14 events in 11 EU member states to reach out to as many researchers as possible.
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CAAST-Net Plus (2013-2016): The Network for the Coordination and Advancement of sub-Saharan Africa-EU Science and Technology Cooperation (CAAST-Net) will continue as CAAST-NET Plus with a special focus on food security, climate change and health. The aim is to increase the quality and quantity of STI cooperation between Europe and Africa in areas of mutual interest and benefit. The network consists of 22 participants (11 European and 11 African participants).

ERAfrica (2010-2013) the first initiative of European and African countries to jointly fund collaborative research projects in the framework of FP7 international cooperation ERANET (ERAfrica) was agreed. The EUR 2 million three year FP7 ERANET for Africa leveraged EUR 11 million from ministries and public institutions in 15 European and African countries for calls launched in January 2013 in the areas of renewable energy, interfacing challenges and idea driven research.
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PAERIP - Promoting African-European Research Infrastructure Partnerships (2011-2013)
The project created a dedicated initiative to promote research infrastructure partnerships between Europe and Africa. The project specifically focused on undertaking a series of relevant studies, which will inform the organisation of policy dialogue and cooperation promotion events.
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Success stories: FP7 projects with participants from South Africa



Framework documents

Background documents


European Commission
DG Research and Innovation
Nienke Buisman
Policy Officer STI relations with Africa
Unit RTD C.3 - European Neighbourhood, Africa and the Gulf
Telephone: (+32) 229 98917

Nienke Buisman