5 October 2017

Botswana: Visit Strengthens Ties

Gaborone — President Lieutenant General Dr Seretse Khama Ian Khama says his visit to Malta will afford the two countries an opportunity to enrich bilateral cooperation.

Speaking at a state dinner during his visit to Malta this week, President Khama said the two countries would exchange views on global issues of mutual interest.

"I consider this visit to be special since it is devoted to our bilateral relations, with a view to deepen and broaden the scope of our mutual cooperation. I am happy to note that during our official interaction, we held fruitful discussions on issues of importance to both our countries," said President Khama, adding the two countries had a lot to learn from each other despite the existing geographical distance between them.

He said Botswana and Malta shared a common vision and were committed to upholding universal principles of democracy, good governance, respect for human rights and the rule of law, which were the foundation of any sustainable development process.

He said Botswana considered Malta as a strategic partner in development efforts and thus the aim to tap on Malta's vast experience and expertise in many economic fields.

"Malta's advancement in areas such as Information Technology and the services sector provides a good opportunity for deepening our collaboration. Other areas for fostering collaboration include human resources development, youth empowerment and development as well as cultural exchanges," he said.

During the visit, the two governments signed an agreement on Avoidance of Double Taxation and the Prevention of Fiscal Evasion with respect to taxes on income.

President Khama said the agreement would go a long way in strengthening economic and commercial ties between the two countries and boost reciprocal investments which could lead to increased job opportunities.

He said Botswana was encouraged by the firm stand that Malta had taken in condemning human rights violations, including political suppression of the voiceless members of the global society, its resolute stand in combating terrorism and violent extremism, addressing the plight of migrants and refugees as well as protecting the environment.

He said it bore the hallmark of an unbending quest for making the world a better and safer place for future generations.

He further said Botswana was deeply concerned by continuous testing of ballistic missiles by North Korea in contravention of international law.

"The provocative actions by this regime, which pays no regard to international peace and security, should compel the international community to unanimously and promptly adopt tougher measures, which will restrain it from carrying out further despicable acts," he said.

President Khama was visiting Malta for the third time, having visited the country in 2005 and 2015.

Source : BOPA

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