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Research Report

THE PARLIAMENTARY HANDBOOK ON FOREIGN POLICY LAUNCH: Strengthening Parliamentary Oversight in Foreign Policy

Compiled by Wayne Jumat
Copyright Date: Jan. 1, 2016
Pages: 13

Table of Contents

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  1. (pp. [ii]-[ii])
  2. (pp. [iii]-[iii])
  3. (pp. 3-3)

    The launch of the Parliamentary Handbook on South Africa’s foreign policy, in Cape Town South Africa, took place on the 4th November 2015, and was the result of a research partnership between the Institute for Global Dialogue (IGD) and the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung (FES). While work has been undertaken around the world to understand the functions and influences of parliaments on foreign policy and global engagements, this handbook speaks directly to South African parliamentarians in a simple and easy to absorb language in order to increase their ability to engage with global issues whether political, economic or cultural.

    Furthermore Ms....

  4. (pp. 4-4)
    Siphosezwe Masango

    On behalf of my colleagues we must congratulate the IGD associated with the University of South Africa (UNISA) and Friedrich Ebert Stiftung (FES) for publishing the Parliamentary Handbook on South African Foreign policy (1994-2014). This handbook was identified as a “useful, easy to read and quick reference” for understanding South African foreign policy, in that it provides assistance to parliamentary members when dealing with foreign policy language and concepts.

    In the contemporary world, few subjects escape the realm of International Relations. This has resulted in the paradigm shift, away from traditional perspectives on foreign policy focusing on security, defence, diplomacy...

  5. (pp. 5-7)
    Lesley Masters, Philani Mthembu and Scarlett Cornelissen

    The creation of this handbook was driven by the experiences of interaction with parliamentary officials on foreign policy in particular and international relations in general, and having access to their thoughts on what the challenges were that they have experienced.

    Firstly, there is a vast amount of material available on South African foreign policy, and its niche areas. Therefore, the objective was to lessen the reading work for Members of Parliament (MPs), leading to the idea of a handbook that would provide synthesised and condensed knowledge of the basic components of South African foreign policy to the parliamentarians. The idea...

  6. (pp. 8-8)

    The discussion themes that were generated during this session were:

    The understanding of the concept of National Interest;

    Challenges facing the Portfolio Committee on International Relations and Cooperation; and

    Questions of Strategy;

    The significant questions in this regard was what is South Africa’s national interest, and how trade features into the strategic thinking behind identifying national interests.

    The responses were that the concept of South Africa’s national interests is contested and unclear. This is partly due to the need of having participation from various sectors, that have different perspectives on what must be pursued as important objectives, and what must...

  7. (pp. 10-10)