South Africa and Japan - a bureaucratic policy analysis

Magwaza, Mayibuye Matthew (2013-12)

Thesis (MA)-- Stellenbosch University, 2013.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: This study applies a modified bureaucratic policy process model to analyse contemporary South African – Japanese relations, particularly in regards to a proposed Economic Partnership Agreement, and the experiences of Japanese agencies within South Africa. South Africa and Japan are major trade partners, and the Japanese government has a significant presence in the African aid scene via the Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD), and through the works of the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA). South African – Japanese relations have been documented in a modest but respectable fashion by a range of researchers, including Alden, Skidmore and Osada. The bureaucratic policy process model has been used in an array of studies on international relations and decision making, notably by Graham Allison. However, it has not been previously applied to South African – Japanese relations. As a result, there is a dearth of information on how bureaucratic dynamics affect Japanese – South African relations. In response to this, a modified bureaucratic policy process model is used to analyse contemporary South African – Japanese governmental relations. A literature review of primary and secondary sources is undertaken, consisting of a historical review of South African – Japanese relations. Following this, a brief overview of contemporary literature on South African – Japanese relations is performed. This includes both secondary sources and primary sources relating to government bureaucracies current priorities and strategies. Material on TICAD is included in this section. Interviews with government officials from both the Japanese and South African governments are carried out using a modified snowball sampling system. The interviews provide insights into the different bureaucratic organization’s priorities and programmes, as well as their relationships with other organizations. From this data, two emergent themes are addressed: the failure of a contemplated Free Trade Agreement / Economic Partnership Agreement and the way in which Japanese agencies, particularly JICA, operate within the South Africa context. It is found that the FTA failed due to welfare concerns from the South African Department of Trade and Industry, as well as greater complications relating to trade agreements in general. These greater complications stem from the involvement of regional bodies such as the South African Customs Union. Japanese agencies are found to be constrained within South Africa by a lack of resources as well as by the independent and somewhat sceptical attitude of South African government agencies towards Japanese aid efforts. It is proposed that the relevance of extra national bureaucracies to the decision making process surrounding the FTA has implications for deploying the bureaucratic policy process model, which has generally only considered national bureaucracies in discussing how decisions are made. It is further suggested that South African trade deals are complicated by the country’s location within the South African Customs Union and the South African Development Community, and the consequent need to consult and negotiate with third parties who are likely to be impacted by such deals. Finally, it is suggested that because both South Africa and Japan face significant, but different economic challenges, they should prioritise improving their economic relations.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Hierdie studie het ’n aangepaste burokratiese beleidsprosesmodel gebruik om die hedendaagse betrekkinge tussen Suid-Afrika en Japan te ontleed, veral wat betref ’n voorgestelde ekonomiese vennootskapsooreenkoms tussen die twee lande en die ervarings van Japannese agentskappe in Suid-Afrika. Suid-Afrika en Japan is groot handelsvennote, en die Japannese regering handhaaf ’n beduidende teenwoordigheid op die Afrika-hulptoneel deur middel van die Tokiose Internasionale Konferensie oor Afrika-ontwikkeling (TICAD) en die werk van die Japannese Internasionale Samewerkingsagentskap (JICA). Verskeie navorsers, waaronder Alden, Skidmore en Osada, het die betrekkinge tussen Suid-Afrika en Japan al op beskeie dog aansienlike wyse beskryf. Die burokratiese beleidsprosesmodel is al in ’n rits studies oor internasionale betrekkinge en besluitneming gebruik, in die besonder deur Graham Allison. Tog is dit nog nooit voorheen op betrekkinge tussen Suid-Afrika en Japan toegepas nie. Dus bestaan daar weinig inligting oor hoe burokratiese dinamiek die betrekkinge tussen hierdie twee lande raak. In antwoord hierop is ’n aangepaste burokratiese beleidsprosesmodel dus gebruik om die hedendaagse staatsbetrekkinge tussen Suid-Afrika en Japan te ontleed. Eerstens is ’n literatuuroorsig van primêre en sekondêre bronne onderneem wat uit ’n historiese oorsig van betrekkinge tussen Suid-Afrika en Japan bestaan het. Daarná is ’n oorsig van kontemporêre literatuur oor die verhoudinge tussen die twee lande onderneem. Dít het sowel sekondêre as primêre bronne met betrekking tot die huidige prioriteite en strategieë van staatsburokrasieë ingesluit. Hierdie afdeling sluit ook materiaal oor TICAD in. Onderhoude met staatsamptenare van die Japannese sowel as die Suid-Afrikaanse regerings is met behulp van ’n aangepaste stelsel van sneeubalsteekproefneming gevoer. Die onderhoude bied insig in die verskillende burokratiese organisasies se prioriteite en programme, sowel as hul verhoudings met ander organisasies. Twee temas wat uit hierdie data na vore gekom het, is vervolgens bespreek: die mislukking van ’n beoogde vryehandel-/ekonomiese vennootskapsooreenkoms, en die funksionering van Japannese agentskappe, veral JICA, in die Suid-Afrikaanse konteks. Daar word bevind dat die vryehandelsooreenkoms misluk het weens welsynsbesware van die Suid-Afrikaanse Departement van Handel en Nywerheid, sowel as groter komplikasies met betrekking tot handelsooreenkomste in die algemeen. Hierdie groter komplikasies hou verband met die betrokkenheid van streeksliggame soos die Suider-Afrikaanse Doeane-unie. Voorts blyk Japannese agentskappe in Suid-Afrika aan bande gelê te word deur ’n gebrek aan hulpbronne, sowel as Suid-Afrikaanse staatsagentskappe se onafhanklike en effens skeptiese houding jeens Japannese hulppogings. Die studie doen aan die hand dat die relevansie van bykomende nasionale burokrasieë in die besluitnemingsproses oor die vryehandelsooreenkoms bepaalde implikasies inhou vir die gebruik van die burokratiese beleidsprosesmodel, wat meestal slegs rekening hou met enkele nasionale burokrasieë se rol in besluitneming. Voorts blyk dit dat Suid-Afrikaanse handelstransaksies bemoeilik word deur die land se lidmaatskap van die Suider-Afrikaanse Doeane-unie en die Suider-Afrikaanse Ontwikkelingsgemeenskap, en die gevolglike behoefte om oorleg te pleeg met derde partye wat waarskynlik deur sulke transaksies geraak sal word. Laastens word aangevoer dat aangesien Suid-Afrika en Japan met beduidende dog verskillende ekonomiese uitdagings te kampe het, die verbetering van ekonomiese betrekkinge tussen die twee lande nou voorrang behoort te geniet.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/85570
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