Forging of an international relationship to share local science stories

The South African Agency for Science and Technology Advancement (SAASTA) has forged a relationship to share South African scientific achievements with a national newspaper in China. This new agreement with Science and Technology Daily in China, complements a continuum of established agreements that SAASTA has already forged with countries across the world, including United States of America, Malawi, Egypt, United Kingdom, Spain, Germany, amongst others. The signing of a memorandum of understanding between SAASTA and the newspaper, China Science and Technology Daily, will see the two organisation sharing local news stories about developments in science and technology.

A delegation from SAASTA, China Science and Technology Daily and the Department Higher Education, Science and Technology convened for the signing ceremony of the memorandum of understanding, held at the National Research Foundation (NRF) on Monday 24 June 2019. The memorandum of understanding establishes a formal relationship between SAASTA and China Science and Technology Daily. The relationship will include networking, content exchange, promoting science engagement, publicising science activities and science news promotion. Through this agreement, the organisations will contribute to building a friendly and highly productive relationship for co-operation within the territories of the People’s Republic of China and the Republic of South Africa.

Science and Technology Daily is the official newspaper of the Ministry of Science and Technology of the People’s Republic of China. It is published in Chinese and based in Beijing. It is regarded as an authority in China for current science and technology issues with objective and scientific perspectives.
Dr Beverley Damonse, Group Executive at NRF welcomed the guests with an introduction of National Research Foundation (NRF) and the South African Agency for Science and Technology Advancement (SAASTA) with an enthusiasm of building and expanding on stakeholder relations. Dr Damonse emphasised that profiling South African science and science achievements domestically and internationally, demonstrating their contribution to national development and global science is one of aims of NRFISAASTA’s.

“The relationship will also promote science communication that will enhance science engagement in South Africa and China,” she explained.
Mr Daan du Toit, Deputy Director General International Cooperation and Resources at the Department Higher Education, Science and Technology, endorsed the ceremony. In his vote of thanks, Mr du Toit expressed a prominent indication of the strengthening in the relationship between South Africa and China. “The establishment of the relationship with China Science and Technology daily came at the right time, as it will be part of a continuum of developments that are currently taking place,” he said. “The South African President, President Cyril Ramaphosa in his state of the nation address also indicated the importance of the SA and China strategic partnerships.”

The signing ceremony acknowledges the endorsements by China Science and Technology Daily, China Embassy, NRF|SAASTA and the DST who have provided support.