Source: New embassies to open in E Guinea, Bearus | The Herald
Nqobile Bhebhe-Senior Business Reporter
Zimbabwe will soon broaden its global diplomatic footprint by opening embassies in Equatorial Guinea, Belarus and Pakistan while Ethiopia will reopen its embassy in the country, President Mnangagwa has said.
Further to that, President Mnangagwa said in the Middle East and in Persia, remarkable inroads are being made and an announcement will soon be made regarding new diplomatic initiatives in Saudi Arabia.
Writing in his weekly column in The Sunday Mail, President Mnangagwa also said he will embark on a State visit to Iran.
The President said it is imperative for Zimbabwe to deepen and broaden its global diplomatic footprint, starting in Africa. This is part of broader engagement and re-engagement efforts being successfully pursued by the Second Republic.
“To secure our interests, we must deepen and broaden our global diplomatic footprint, starting here on our African continent. We should never forget that throughout our struggles as a people, both before and after our independence, Africa has always been our strongest defence, and remains our home,” he wrote.
“I am happy that the sister Federal Republic of Ethiopia is preparing to reopen her Chancery in our country, after closing it a few years back when that sister country was going through challenges.
“Ethiopia is important to Zimbabwe and to Africa as a whole; we celebrate the return of peace in that key African country, which historically symbolises Africa’s independence and our continental unity. The Organisation of African Unity, OAU, now African Union, AU, was launched in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, back in 1963.”
President Mnangagwa noted that after independence, Ethiopia helped Zimbabwe to rebuild its aviation sector.
He revealed that following his visit to Equatorial Guinea early this year, a fully-fledged embassy in that oil-rich country will be opened.
“My counterpart, President Nguema Mbasogo, will be replying to my State visit once arrangements are finalised,” he said.
New embassies are earmarked in Belarus and Pakistan, he said, noting that Belarus, which has remained a solid partner for the country’s economic development, was now ripe to upgrade Zimbabwe’s presence by opening a full Chancery.
“Belarusian leader, President Lukashenko, was in our country early this year, in response to my invitation to him to pay us a State visit. This followed an inaugural visit I made to Belarus as President of Zimbabwe in January 2018.
“Belarus has been and remains a solid partner in our economic development, most notably in the agricultural and mining sectors. Our ZMDC secured earthmoving equipment from Belarus following the visit I paid to that country then as Vice President under the First Republic,” said the President.
“Our programme to modernise and mechanise Zimbabwean agriculture has largely been powered by the Republic of Belarus. The time has now come for us to upgrade our presence in that strategic country by opening a full Chancery.”
During President Lukashenko’s historic visit, several agreements were signed including the US$66 million agricultural equipment deal that is expected to further boost agricultural productivity, ensuring national food security and restoring Harare as the breadbasket of the region.
President Mnangagwa and his Belarus counterpart, President Lukashenko, commissioned 1 635 tractors, 16 combine harvesters and other farming equipment including boom sprayers with a combined value of US$66 million.
The agricultural equipment is part of the country’s Phase 2 of the Belarus Mechanisation Facility. Phase One saw the delivery of 474 tractors, 60 combine harvesters, 210 planters and five low-bed trucks to farmers.
He said Pakistan which played a key role in setting up the Airforce of Zimbabwe (AFZ) soon after independence and training airmen and technicians.
“We now feel this relationship has matured enough to warrant the opening of a full Chancery in Islamabad,” he said.