Ethiopia and Norway signed a new Memorandum of Understanding yesterday in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa.
The two sides were represented by Norway’s Minister of International Development Heikki Holmås, who is also in charge of Norway’s Agency for Development Cooperation, and the Ethiopian Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hailemariam Desalegn.
The press release from the Ethiopian government indicates that Norway decided ‘to double its support to Ethiopia’.
Read below the press release from both the Ethiopian and Norwegian Foreign Ministries.
Norway, Ethiopia agree to work closely on ‘green’ growth
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hailemariam Desalegn held talks on Wednesday with a delegation led by Norway’s Agency for Development Cooperation Minister, Hickey Homas. The Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation expressed its readiness to continue its support to Ethiopia’s use and development of environmentally friendly energy sources and to its agriculture development. The two sides also signed a Memorandum of Understanding on issues of common interest in political affairs. Ato Hailemariam welcomed Norway’s decision to double its support to Ethiopia which he said further strengthened relations between the two countries. He also noted Norway’s significant contributions in working for sustainable stability in the Horn of Africa. Minister Homas emphasized that Ethiopia and Norway are working closely together with special focus on ‘green’ growth and on eco-friendly hydro power projects.
Source: Ethiopia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Press release, 10.05.2012
New MoU between Norway and Ethiopia
Norway’s Minister of International Development Heikki Holmås and Ethiopia’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Hailemariam Desalegn signed the MoU during Mr Holmås’s visit to Ethiopia this week.
Mr Holmås commented, “Ethiopia has chosen a path of green development that is lifting people out of poverty. Given that it is one of the world’s poorest countries, its plans are impressive. The new MoU creates a good departure point for helping to improve the human rights situation in Ethiopia.”
The MoU covers all aspects of the close development cooperation between Ethiopia and Norway. Ethiopia is witnessing rapid development. It is playing a leading role in the African fight against climate change. It also has a key role in the efforts to bring about peace between Sudan and South Sudan and in Somalia. However, there are aspects of the human rights situation in the country that give grounds for criticism. The new MoU will enable Norway to step up its dialogue on these types of issues in a more systematic manner.
“I’m glad that I decided to travel to Africa for my first visit as minister. This has given me new insight into important issues. For me it has been crucial to be able to talk to people working with human rights and members of the opposition in addition to my talks with key representatives of the authorities. It would have been difficult to gain these insights without coming here,” said Mr Holmås.
Related posts (in this blog):
* Ethiopia-Norway agreement on ‘voluntary return of asylum seekers’ (Feb. 2012)
* Prime Minister Meles Zenawi’s visit to Norway and Denmark (Oct. 2011)
* PM Meles Zenawi and protesters in Oslo | Norwegian newspaper (Oct. 2011)
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