5 February 2019

Angola: President Points Out Cooperation With DR Congo As Priority

Luanda — Angolan head of State João Lourenço Tuesday in Luanda mentioned the cooperation in security and economic fields with the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) as priorities.

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President João Lourenço (R.) with counterpart of DRCongo, Félix Tshisekedi

João Lourenço was speaking at a press conference with DRC counterpart, Felix Tshisekedi, at Presidential Palace in Luanda after a private meeting.

This is the first foreign visit of Felix Tshisekedi, since he became President of the DRC on 24 January this year.

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The Angolan statesman stressed that the two countries can not overlook the security of the long common border (more than 2,500 kilometers), suggesting agreements in the areas of security, public order and migration.

João Lourenço said he hoped the two countries would move from old intentions to concrete projects.

According to the president, should the countries take advantage of "huge mineral resources" through reciprocal investments the unemployment rate can be reduced.

He defended re-organisation of trade in general and cross-border trade, in particular.

The president expressed interest in discussing and negotiating the supply of electricity to the Angolan provinces of Cabinda and Zaire (north) and other border regions from the DRC.

The Angolan statesman suggested to better explore the Benguela Railways (CFB) and Lobito Port to ease the flow of miners exported from Katanga to international markets and open doors to imports into the DRC.

João Lourenço said that the two countries can share experiences to overcome challenges such as the lack of infrastructure, electrification, industrialisation and unemployment.

The Angolan President believes that each country has much to offer in terms of reciprocal gains and overcome many common challenges.

Felix Tshisekedi, 55, is the fifth president of the DRC.

Tshisekedi is also leader of the Union for Democracy and Social Progress (UDPS), the country's largest and the oldest opposition party.

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