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South Sudan president calls for strengthening economic ties with Ethiopia

President Salva Kiir and Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn speak after the signing of bilateral cooperation agreements in Addis Ababa on 24 February 2017 (ENA Photo)

March 17, 2017 (JUBA) - South Sudan President Salva Kiir has commended growing relations with the neighbouring Ethiopia, stressing that the two countries should strengthen economic and trade cooperation with a focus on high-value emerging sectors for the benefit of both sides.

The government attaches great importance to bilateral ties between the two countries exhibiting considerable progress in recent months. It is hoped that the two sides will deepen collaboration based on existing foundations so that they can make more meaningful contributions to the international community.

President Kiir made the remarks while receiving a written message from the Ethiopian special envoy at the presidential palace.

The Ethiopian leader’s envoy Berhane Gebre-Christos said he delivered a follow-up message on a number of issues President Kiir and his Ethiopian counterpart have discussed during his visit to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia where the two countries signed a number of agreements.

He added that the content of the message was concerning how to move forward in strengthening bilateral Relations between Juba and Addis Ababa.

The minister in the office of the president Mayiik Ayii Deng said there is significant room for greater bilateral economic cooperation in the emerging sectors targeted under innovative industries initiative.

He said a key component of the administration’s economic development strategy aims at bolstering cooperation in security as well as the circular economy and a new paradigm for agricultural development.

Minister Deng said that the government has already launched several major projects under a recent cooperation agreement.

A high ministerial committee would convene a meeting soon to discuss details of how the technical teams could kick start the processes.

The president, he said, also reiterated commitment to actively participating in the global community, urging countries around the world to cooperate in tackling economic, humanitarian and security challenges.

The young nation, he adds, remains steadfast in meeting its international responsibilities and is willing to share its experiences in fostering democracy, economic development, human rights and science.