Foreign Minister Dr Tedros confers with EU Foreign Policy Chief

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On 20 October 2015, Foreign Minister, Dr Tedros Adhanom met with the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Ms. Federica Mogherini. Ms. Mogherini visited Ethiopia as part of the occasion of the 40th anniversary of EU-Ethiopia relations. Ms. Mogherini noted that the EU and Ethiopia relations during this period had encompassed humanitarian, developmental, and political areas as well as peace and security.  She stressed the EU’s desire to further invest in its relationship with Ethiopia, noting in particular the importance of putting in place a mechanism for high–level political dialogue.

Discussing the current humanitarian situation in drought-affected areas in Ethiopia, Ms. Mogherini noted the EU’s readiness to support the efforts of the Ethiopian Government. In relation to business and economy, Ms. Mogherini noted that “EU is a top trade partner with Ethiopia and we wish to see it grow even more”. She suggested hosting an Ethiopia-EU business forum. She also emphasized the EU’s interest to work with Ethiopia on climate change for the upcoming Paris Climate Change Conference of Parties. With regard to migration and mobility, Ms. Mogherini noted that EU firmly believed that the upcoming Valeta Conference would have an important role to define the structures and institutions of Africa and Europe and design effective intervention to tackle irregular migration. She also noted the EU’s desire to work with Ethiopia on supporting returnees, dismantling human trafficking networks and providing awareness-creation programs.

Dr Tedros thanked the EU for its support to Ethiopia’s peace and security efforts in Somalia, in South Sudan and the region in general.  He highlighted the  strong trade partnership Ethiopia enjoyed with the EU, agreeing that, given the potential much needs could be done. He welcomed the idea of hosting a business forum.  He thanked the EU for its 745 million Euro support and emphasized the need for EU to consider support for Ethiopia’s major projects.  He also discussed Ethiopia’s challenges in regulating migration as it is a country of origin, transit and destination. He welcomed the EU’s desire to support Ethiopia’s efforts to address the root cause of migration, the fight against poverty. He also noted that Ethiopia’s National Council against Human Trafficking was working on addressing attitudinal problems by creating awareness of the dangers of irregular migration. He pointed out that Ethiopia was pushing hard to create jobs through increasing productivity and small holder farmers, and boosting Small and Microfinance projects.

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