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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Economic statecraft in South Africa's regional diplomacy
Author:Lalbahadur, Aditi
Periodical:South African Journal of International Affairs (ISSN 1938-0275)
Geographic terms:South Africa
Swaziland - Eswatini
Subjects:foreign policy
human rights
External link:https://doi.org/10.1080/10220461.2016.1199970
Abstract:This paper considers the extent to which South Africa utilises positive economic statecraft to promote human rights in the region - that is, the degree to which it mobilises its economic engagement to affect a desirable political outcome in its foreign engagements in Southern Africa. The country's reaction to crises in Zimbabwe and Swaziland over the past 20 years is a strong indicator of the limits of South Africa's statecraft in this regard. These engagements highlight the inevitable clash between the country's principled preference for 'non-interference' in the affairs of sovereign states and its constitutional mandate to respect and promote human rights. Despite eschewing the role of 'regional hegemon', there is an expectation that South Africa will play an integral role in securing regional stability. Yet there is little evidence to suggest that the country chooses to approach resolving regional challenges with a co-ordinated political and economic approach. This paper argues that, to be more effective in spreading a progressive regional agenda that encourages democracy, governance and human rights, South Africa needs to incorporate a stronger element of positive economic statecraft in its foreign policy implementation. Notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]