16 January 2013

Zambia: Obama Assures Zambia

UNITED States of America (US) President Barack Obama has pledged to expand economic ties with Zambia through increased bilateral trade and investment.

The US president also commended the Zambian Government for consistently focusing on addressing public health challenges.

Mr Obama said the US was committed to assisting Zambia improve productivity in the agricultural sector.

"We laud the Zambian Government's growing leadership in addressing public health challenges and pledge to continue our investment through The President's Emergency Plan For AIDS Relief and other initiatives to combat infectious diseases and improve maternal and child health" he said.

He was speaking at the White House in Washington DC on Monday when he received a letter of credence from Zambia's new Ambassador to the US Palan Mulonda.

Mr Mulonda is former director at the Zambia Institute of Advanced Legal Education (ZIALE) and was recently appointed to serve in the Foreign Service.

This is contained in a statement released by First Secretary for Press at the Zambian Embassy in the US Patricia Littiya.

Mr Obama observed that both the US and Zambia were dedicated to democracy, peace, health and the welfare of citizens and others around the world.

He said this was evidenced through a history of cooperation both regionally and internationally through peacekeeping under the United Nations and support for refugees.

Presenting his letter of credence, Mr Mulonda said Zambia considered the US as a key development partner.

The two countries, he said, continued to benefit at Bilateral and multilateral levels in various areas of mutual cooperation.

Mr Mulonda said Zambia had benefited from the US through initiatives such as The President Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief and the Global Fund to fight AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria.

He said Zambia was determined to increase trade volumes with the US under the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA).

"I shall seek to explore trade and investment opportunities between our two countries in order to enhance economic development," he said.

He said Zambia had been a champion of democracy as seen through the holding of regular elections and peaceful transition of power.

Mr Mulonda said the Zambian Government under President Michael Sata was committed to upholding the rule of law.

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