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Zim, Egypt focus on expanding areas of cooperation

Story by Josephine Mugiyo, Diplomatic Correspondent

PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa has stressed the need for African leaders to harness vast resources in their countries to propel development on the continent.

He was speaking after meeting his Egyptian counterpart President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi in Cairo this Tuesday.

President Mnangagwa who was in Egypt for the Intra Africa Trade Fair, met President El -Sisi at the Presidential Palace in Cairo.

The Head of State, who was accompanied by cabinet ministers, said the meeting was anchored on the historical ties between the two countries initiated 60 years ago.

“Myself with the ministers, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Minister of Finance and President Sisi, and his three ministers, including his Minister of Foreign Affairs. We had a broad and comprehensive discussion about our relations both historical relations between our two countries, we walked the distance of cooperation during the period of the liberation struggle when most of us, 60 years ago, came here to Egypt for military training, showing that there has been this cooperation, and Egypt contributed to the liberation of Zimbabwe,” he said.

President Mnangagwa said they also spoke about the need to enhance economic ties, particularly in food security.

“Currently, we felt it is necessary to have more comprehensive economic and bilateral relations between our two countries especially in the areas of food security, they have advanced technology in the area of preservation of food as well as aquaculture which they have here and we felt that we can cooperate,” he added.

The two countries are also working on cooperation in wheat production, “Thirdly, agriculture, Zimbabwe has vast lands for agriculture, we are an agricultural country and we can cooperate on in that area, they also want things like wheat, which we produce and they believe with the model of agriculture which has been introduced by our Minister of Agriculture, there is a market here to export our wheat,” highlighted the President.

President Mnangagwa noted the need for the continent to cement trade relations and grow African economies.

“Generally, we said Africa has reached a stage where before we can have intra-trade among African countries, in fact, we can have the majority of our needs found internally in Africa and we need to have inter-Africa trade promoted among ourselves. It is necessary that we help each other for development by sharing what we have, the resources which we have, the skills which we have in Africa and cooperate, rather copying beyond our continent, only in exceptional circumstances can we do so.”

The President believes African leaders should come up with a clear roadmap to develop the continent, “The current crop of African leaders must have that vision of developing and making Africa really an independent continent, we have resources, in fact most of our resources are not yet exploited, we must look at that, and we will by collaborating among ourselves.”

President Mnangagwa has been advancing the country’s economic diplomacy agenda, during his visit to Saudi Arabia and Egypt where his pitch was based on the investment opportunities available in Zimbabwe.

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