25 September 2013

Ethiopia: New EU and Slovak Ambassadors Meet State Minister Berhane Gebre-Christos

The newly assigned European Union (EU) and Slovak Ambassadors to Ethiopia presented copies of their credentials to the State Minister for Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Berhane Gebre-Christos and held discussions with him on Monday (September 23).

The new Slovak Ambassador, Mr. Jozef Cibula, said he hoped to improve the good relationship between the two countries. He noted Slovakia has experience in building dams and that it can provide expertise in this area. The Ambassador expressed Slovakia's desire to increase trade and investment between the two countries. The State Minister expressed his belief that the potential for increased trade and investment in Ethiopia was huge as the country was expanding its infrastructure in railways, roads, telecommunications and energy development. He noted that there was greater interest from around the world in investment opportunities in Ethiopia because of its growing economy and political stability. He hoped these opportunities would be available to the Slovak private sector.

In discussion with the new EU Ambassador, Mrs. Chantal Hebberecht, State Minister Berhane emphasized that Ethiopia valued its special relationship with the European Union and expressed his conviction that the relationship would continue in multiple areas of cooperation. He said the Government firmly believed in open and genuine discussion on all topics and stressed there was no difference in fundamental values and principles between Ethiopia and the EU. The EU Ambassador said that the EU would continue to play an active role as a development partner of Ethiopia and would work closely with the Government on different issues. She noted that the trade relationship between Ethiopia and EU was an area that was extremely important to the EU and she hoped to work closely with the Ethiopian government to expand their trade partnership.

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