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Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, T. Quick, on visit to Ethiopia (Addis Ababa 07.03.2019)
Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Terens Quick visited Ethiopia, as the head of a business mission, in the context of his tour of East African countries. The Deputy Minister was received by the President of Ethiopia, Ms Sale-Gouork Zeounta, who made the following statements:
“I am happy to welcome Greece to Ethiopia's Presidential Palace. I am happy that a member of the Greek government is here in this room, after more than fifty years. The ties between the two countries go back centuries in any case, with many points in common that also have to do with culture. I shall not fail to mention the historically significant Greek community in my country. Following the discussion we had last December in Vienna, during the EU-Africa Ministerial Summit, I especially appreciate the fact that you remained true to your word and that you are here with a significant Greek business mission. Rest assured that, by doing business with Ethiopia, both sides achieve a win-win result.”
The Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs conveyed the greetings of the President of the Hellenic Republic and the satisfaction of the Greek Government with Ethiopia’s initiative to proceed with a Peace agreement with Eritrea. In addition, he stressed that Greece, as a member of the European Union, monitors with special interest the great reforms undertaken by the ethiopean government, both in the administrative and financial sectors. The Deputy Minister also noted the fact that the new Prime Minister, Abiy Ahmed, chose to appoint women to more than half of the positions on his government’s ministerial council, as the Chief of the Supreme Court and the Head of the Chamber of Commerce are also women.
Commencement of the work of the business mission took place at the Greek Embassy in Addis Ababa, in the presence of State Minister of Foreign Affairs in charge of Economy and Diaspora issues, Dr. Aklilu Hailemichael, with whom the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs subsequently had a bilateral meeting in the presence of Greek Ambassador Nikos Patakias.
Earlier, Mr. Quick had a meeting with the State Minister of Foreign Affairs for Political Issues, Dr. Marcos Tekle, while also meeting with the Delegation Head of the European Union in Ethiopia, Johan Borgstam, and the Head of the European Investment Bank in Addis Ababa, Eleni Kyrou. Finally, the Executive Vice President of SEV, Konstantinos Bitsios, signed a Memorandum of Cooperation with the Ethiopian Chamber of Commerce and Sectoral Associations, in the presence also of Georgios Zisimatos, a representative of Enterprise Greece.
In his statement to the English language newspaper the Herald, the Deputy Minister of Foreign affairs mentioned, inter alia:
Ethiopia is the base of the African Union. Also located here are the central offices of the European Investment Bank, of the basic ones on the African Continent, as well as the World Bank. Its growth ranges between 8% to 11%.
These are basic components that encourage the outward-looking nature of Greek companies also towards Ethiopia, in important fields where it promotes its needs, such as energy in all its forms, including Green energy, in the field of infrastructure construction, in the field of construction of residential complexes, standardisation of products, in the field of drugs and cosmetics, as well as the import of select agricultural products such as olive oil and wine, for example.
The Agreement with Eritrea, which now permits access on the part of Ethiopia to important ports, as I also discussed with the competent State Minister, open paths for us also for cooperation in the field of logistics, transports and shipping, where we can also agree on cooperation with the port of Pireaus for Ethiopia’s business with the European Continent.
Last year, current Minister of Foreign Affairs Giorgos Katrougalos was here in Addis Ababa And now, over a period of two years, I am coming to Ethiopia for the second time, proof of the decisive manner in which the Hellenic Ministry of Foreign Affairs wishes to regard its relations with Ethiopia.”