The impact of the United States (US) and South Africa's (SA) trade relationship on Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia and Swaziland (BLNS) [1999-2013]

Saule, Asanda
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
This study set out to interrogate the impact of the U.S. - S.A. trade relationship on Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia and Swaziland (BLNS). A qualitative method of study was chosen and the literature review method was used. South Africa’s foreign policy making was analysed and it was found that in 1994, the country, sought international standing and economic growth. As such, it chose foreign policy that met the stringent criteria of Brenton Woods institutions and liberalised markets, privatised and had a stringent tax regime. The country also carved out a niche as an agent for peace on the African continent and a champion of the global South. South Africa’s post-democratic relationship with the United States was analysed and found to have been negatively impacted by the hangover of Cold War politics and the U.S.’s relationship with the apartheid government. The new government also considered Russia and other American enemies like Cuba, Iran and Lybia allies. The South African government never fully trusted the U.S.’s intentions and was wary of agreeing too often with the country for fear of being called a puppet of the U.S. However, the two countries managed to find common ground and continue to trade with each other successfully. The relationship between BLNS and S.A. in SACU was found to be unequal with BLNS still economically and geographically dependent on S.A. This is in spite numerous changes meant to bring about equality in SACU. The study concluded that there was no real impact on BLNS as a result of the relationship between U.S. and S.A.BLNS suffered a negative impact when the European Union and S.A. signed an agreement but they ensured they were not victims of the U.S. – S.A. trade relationship.
A research report submitted to the Faculty of Humanities, University of the Witwatersrand, in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts in International Relations Johannesburg, 2014