.Abiy’s visit opens new door for political, economic partnership

The government of Ethiopia has been closely working with its South African counterpart to reach a final agreement to curb illegal migration and resort to skilled labor exchanges that will ensure the rights, benefits and dignity of citizens, according to Ethiopia’s ambassador to that country.

Approached by The Ethiopian Herald, Ethiopia’s Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to South Africa, Shiferaw Teklemariam stated that the Ethiopian government is giving due emphasis on well- researched legal frameworks, structural organization and working systems to send skilled employees to South Africa.

Ambassador Shiferaw noted that mutual understanding between Ethiopia and South Africa is growing time to time since Prime Minister ’s official visit to the latter last January. Continuous dialogues are underway, even in the current coronavirus-affected situation, in virtual platforms to reach the final deal in the shortest possible time.

Citing false information disseminated by some parties about dramatic change of livelihoods in South Africa, the ambassador advised citizens to take legal routes and ways to travel as most of the vulnerable groups are illegal migrants.

During his visit, Premier Abiy also conferred with South Africa President on South Africa’s involvement in the Tripartite Talks of Ethiopia, Egypt and Sudan on the filling of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD). “Emanating from his strong belief to give African solutions to African problems, the PM invited President Ramaphosa, the current Chairperson of the African Union, to contribute share in the ongoing dialogue.”

According to the ambassador, President Ramaphosa’s consensus to take part in the GERD Talks under the auspicious of the AU is one of Ethiopia’s landmark diplomatic achievements. The revised Ethiopia’s Foreign Policy has given due emphasis to forge relations with African countries and enhance partnership to the fulfillment of Pan-African peace, democracy and development goals.

“Taking in to account South Africa’s status of being Africa’s economic powerhouse, the Premier visit was also aimed at promoting Ethiopia’s economic interests,” he said, adding that South African companies were briefed about Ethiopia’s untapped potentials for investment, trade and tourism.

Ambassador Shiferaw expressed his belief that Abiy’s visit was instrumental to aware South African companies that Ethiopia is the right place to do business. Accordingly, there is a growing desire among South African investors to discover Ethiopia’s business climate and to maximize their involvement in the country’s market.

For its part, Ethiopia’s Embassy in Pretoria puts in place meticulous efforts to lobbying for facilitating the expansion of market horizons of the nation’s export in South Africa. Soliciting development assistance consisting of financial and technical support through bilateral cooperation is also among the priorities of the diplomatic mission, the ambassador remarked.

South Africa is amongst homes to large Ethiopian Diaspora and there are reportedly 200,000 Ethiopians live and work in that country.

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