WINDHOEK - International Relations and Cooperation Minister Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah said Namibia and Russia remain special friends and their friendship needs to be nourished and maintained, not only at the political level but through other platforms as well.
She made the remarks yesterday when she opened the 8th Session of the Namibia-Russia Inter-Governmental Commission on Trade and Economic Cooperation between the two countries. She said the 8th session of the economic cooperation will create opportunities for both countries to monitor and evaluate the status of their cooperation through the implementation of the various bilateral undertakings between the two sisterly countries.
At the same time, she added, it accords both nations an opportunity to explore new opportunities, all with the aim of enhancing bilateral and economic cooperation for mutual benefit.
„I am happy to note that we have made significant achievements in our bilateral relations and cooperation,“ Nandi-Ndaitwah noted.
On the political and diplomatic aspect, she recalled the visit of by her Russian counterpart to Windhoek last year, where, she said, they had fruitful political and diplomatic exchanges to further consolidate their cooperation, particularly at multilateral fora.
In this regard, she indicated Namibia looks forward to the Russia-Africa Summit in October 2019 in Russia. With regard to bilateral cooperation, she expressed the Namibian government’s appreciation for the continued assistance in the area of higher education in support of the Namibian government’s efforts in alleviating poverty through education and capacity building.
„It is my fervent hope that the business delegation accompanying you will be able to partner with our business people in finding joint ventures including small and medium enterprises,“ she said.
Thus, she called upon the business communities of Russia and Namibia to engage with each other with the view to establishing smart partnerships.
She said she is encouraged that cooperation between both countries’ agricultural experts in the area of veterinary services and phytosanitary surveillance has commenced and that there are ongoing negotiations to import and export products between the two countries.
While there are still a number of outstanding agreements, she urged officials to speed up their work in order to finalise them.
At the 7th session, the two governments signed various agreements, memorandums of understandings (MoUs) and treaties.
These include an agreement on Cooperation in Science and Education between the Peoples’ Friendship University of Russia (RUDN) and the International University of Management signed on August 17, 2018.
It also includes a treaty between the Government of the Russian Federation and the Government of the Republic of Namibia on Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters signed on October 8, 2018.
Another agreement is on Cooperation between the Ministry of Justice of the Russian Federation and the Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Namibia entered on October 8, 2018.
Additionally, the two countries entered into an MoU between the Federal Penitentiary Service of the Russian Federation (FSIN of Russia) and the Namibian Correctional Service (NCS) on Cooperation in the Field of Corrections signed on February 19, 2019.
Therefore, she called upon all officials to work diligently to review the status of implementation of these agreements as they are instruments that will allow them to exchange information and share experiences for the mutual benefit of the people.
She confirmed that a number of new areas of cooperation have been agreed upon in the sectors of aviation, fertilisers, value addition in the mining sector, energy, education, education infrastructure and cultural exchanges.
Given its strategic geographical location, she said, Namibia has decided to establish itself as a logistical hub. In this context, she welcomes enhanced cooperation in the area of transport infrastructure as it would also benefit the two coastal states. ‘‘It is my sincere hope that our ensuing deliberations will identify new areas of cooperation particularly in IT technologies and tourism so that we can address our common challenges and take advantage of shared opportunities,“ she stated.
2019-05-24 09:00:29 3 months ago