Pretoria: The Limkokwing University of Creative Technology in Malaysia has conferred an Honorary Doctorate of Leadership on President Zuma, who is on an official visit to that country.
In his acceptance speech, the President lauded the founder and president of the institution, Tan Sri Lim Kok Wing, for his commitment to education globally, particular the development and empowerment of African students through the establishment of campuses in several African countries, such as Botswana and Swaziland.
“Through the establishment of campuses on the African continent, this prestigious university and institution of higher learning has become part and parcel of a bigger project on the African continent of strengthening its human capacity and skills base, so that we may realise the true potential of our continent, which today is emerging as one of the fastest poles of global growth,” said Zuma.
The university also conferred an Honorary Doctorate of Humanity on former President Nelson Mandela in 2007, in recognition of his efforts and role in bringing about a free and democratic South Africa through peaceful means.
Zuma said while South Africa had achieved the UN Millennium Development Goal of universal access to education before 2015, the country had a lot to learn from Malaysia. Malaysia was well on the path of becoming a developed country within the time frame it has set for itself. Malaysia, Zuma said, had achieved this by recognizing the value of quality and inclusive education.
This year, South Africa and Malaysia celebrate the 20th anniversary of the establishment of formal diplomatic relations. Malaysia is an important economic partner in Southeast Asia and remains the largest investor in South Africa from the region, with focused investments in petrochemicals, telecommunications, real estate and hospitality.
South Africa is the largest investor in Malaysia from Africa, with investments in petro-chemicals, insurance, food and beverages industries.
Total trade between South Africa and Malaysia has grown steadily from approximately R13.8 billion in 2008 to R19.7 billion in 2012. Total exports increased from R5.2 billion to R8.8 billion, and imports from R8.5 billion to R10.9 billion in 2008 and 2012, respectively.