(HAN) — At the invitation of the President of the Republic of Kenya, H.E. Uhuru Kenyatta, CGH, the Prime Minister of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, H.E. Hailemariam Dessalegn, paid a State Visit to the Republic of Kenya from 22nd to 24th June, 2016. The three day State Visit and Inaugural High Level Biennial Commission provided an opportunity to strengthen the excellent relations existing between the Governments and the peoples of the Republic of Kenya and the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia.
H.E. Hailemariam Dessalegn was accompanied by H.E. Dr. Tedros Adhanom, Minister of Foreign Affairs, H.E. Dr. Workineh Gebeyehu, Minister of Transport, H.E. Mr. Tolossa Shagi, Minister of Mining and Energy and H.E. Mr. Sileshi Getacun, Minister of Livestock and Fisheries Resources and Senior Government Officials and members of the business community from the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia.
H.E. President Uhuru Kenyatta and H.E. Hailemariam Dessalegn, Prime Minister of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia held discussions on a wide range of issues of mutual interest at bilateral, regional, continental and global levels.
At the bilateral level, the two Leaders welcomed the decision to elevate the economic relations between the two nations through signing the Historic Special Status Agreement. They committed to redouble their efforts and undertook to provide their support for the creation of a conducive environment for trade and investment between the two countries.
The two leaders noted the progress on the implementation of the commitments made by the 34th Session of the Joint Ministerial Cooperation Commission meeting between Kenya and Ethiopia held on 21st November, 2012 and the 35th Session held from 17th -22ndJune, 2016 in Nairobi as follows:
Affirmed their commitments to support the African Position during the upcoming two major conferences scheduled to be held in Nairobi namely the 14th United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) and Tokyo Conference on Africa’s Development VI (TICAD) Summit in 17th to 22nd July and 27th to 28th August, 2016 respectively.
Appreciated the work of the Joint Border Administrators’ Commissioners Meeting for its contribution in enhancing issues of Peace and Security along the common border and agreed to share information on the movement of anti-peace elements, human and drug trafficking and illegal arms dealers and committed to share experiences in the management of possession, registration and licensing of firearms.
Recognized the role of the private sector in enhancing trade and investment between the two countries and encouraged the private sector to implement the MoU signed between the respective Chambers of Commerce during their address to the Kenya/Ethiopia Business Forum on 23rd June 2016.
Noted the ongoing construction of the Moyale One Stop Border Post (OSBP) and agreed to expedite the process including its operationalization.
Agreed on the establishment of a Joint Railway Commission (JRC), and Project Coordination Committee (PCC) to help in the implementation of the bilateral agreement signed in March 2012 in Nairobi, Kenya.
Committed to finalize an agreement on the development and operation of a product oil pipeline from Lamu Port to Addis Ababa by the end of 2016.
Agreed to explore the possibilities of launching a Joint Grand Kenya/Ethiopia Marathon as a “Sports Brand” to promote Cultural Cooperation and Sports Tourism.
Reaffirmed their commitment to work together on areas of mutual benefit and cooperate in the following areas Immigration, Information and Media, Customs, Trade & Investments, Civil Aviation, Energy, Transport, Environment, Arts and Culture, Gender & Social Development, Education, Science & Technology, Cooperatives, Housing & Urban Development and Public Service.
Stressed the key role that African countries must continue to play in the pursuit of peace and security on the African continent. While noting the gains made in South Sudan and Somalia, underlined their commitment to support the stability and peace building of these two nations in collaboration with IGAD and the international community.
Witnessed the signing of five (5) Memoranda of Understanding:
- MOU in the Cooperation on Oil and Gas Sector:
- MOU on Cooperation in the Field of Health
- MOU in Cooperation in the Field of Sports
- MOU on Cooperation on Cross Border Cooperation in Animal Health and Sanitary Measure
- MOU in the Field of Education
H.E. Hailemariam Dessalegn expressed warm appreciation to H. E. President Uhuru Kenyatta, the people and the Government of Kenya for the warm welcome and generous hospitality extended to his delegation during the visit.
H.E. Hailemariam Dessalegn, invited H.E. President Uhuru Kenyatta to make a State Visit to Ethiopia in the context of the Second High Level Biennial Commission in the first half of 2018.
H.E. President Uhuru Kenyatta accepted the invitation.
The two leaders rededicated themselves and their Governments to enhance and further deepen the cordial bilateral relations that exist between Kenya and Ethiopia and directed the immediate implementation of all signed agreements and MOUs within a clear time frame.
23rd June 2016