The new Head of Delegation of the European Union to the Republic of Botswana and SADC Ambassador, Petra Pereyra, says Africa remains a priority for the EU.
Speaking when she paid a courtesy call on Zambia’s Acting High Commissioner to Botswana, Brighton Litula, Ambassador Pereyra said Africa had a huge potential of economic growth.
“Thank you for recognizing the EU as an important strategic partner to Zambia and of course this is something that we hope to be to the countries here in the Southern region. It is a priority for the EU that we work in close relation with our African partners across this continent,” she said.
Ms. Pereyra noted that Africa remains a priority for the European Union adding that Africa also has a huge potential both on the international fora and economic growth as well as potential to fight the global challenges being faced.
“Africa is a really important partner, we really hope to work with all of our African countries in partnership in a way that we are there to support and empower our partners on their ambitions towards achieving prosperity and economic growth,” Ambassador Pereyra said.
And Zambia’s Acting High Commissioner to Botswana, Brighton Litula, said the EU was one of the long and important strategic development partners for Zambia.
He said the EU has been supporting Zambia in various sectors such as energy, agriculture, public finance, good governance and private sector development, environment and climate change, among others.
“You are very much aware that our development partnership was revolving around the European Development Fund (EDF) framework of which during the 11th EDF, which ran from 2014 to 2022, Zambia was able to benefit EUR 460 million in the form of grants in various sectors of the economy,” he said.
He indicated that the funding for the year 2021 to 2024 is EUR 299 million to Zambia which will go towards green partnership for sustainable recovery, growth and decent jobs.
Mr. Litula appealed to the EU Head of Delegation to consider the possibility of engaging the SADC Secretariat to initiate a project which would resolve the traffic congestion at the Kasumbalesa Border as it is a bottleneck to trade among SADC countries along the North, South transport Corridor.
This is according to a statement issued to ZANIS in Lusaka today by First Secretary for Press at Zambia High Commission in Gaborone, Botswana, Julia Malunga.