The Government of Mozambique and the European Union (EU), through a joint communiqué of the 29th meeting of the political dialogue held in Lichinga, Niassa province, have “strongly condemned the barbaric acts perpetrated in the province of Cabo Delgado claiming human lives and caused destruction of socio-economic infrastructures”.
The Mozambique - EU Political Dialogue took place from 17 to 21 November 2020, under the theme “Mozambique and European Union for Decentralized Cooperation”. The political dialogue is part of Article 8 of the Cotonou Agreement, which stipulates “parties shall regularly engage in a comprehensive, balanced and deep political dialogue leading to commitments on both sides”. The meeting was co-chaired by the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation of Mozambique, Veronica Macamo, and the Head of the European Union Delegation to Mozambique, Ambassador Antonio Sánchez-Benedito Gaspar.
The two parties discussed topics of bilateral cooperation, such as priority areas for development, humanitarian support and security, the implementation of the Peace Agreement and the response to the COVID-19 pandemic; trade and investment in the regional context, climate change and the new EU programming cycle for Mozambique; and, finally, on multilateral issues pertaining the partnership between Mozambique and international organizations.
On peace and stability, the EU praised the commitment and efforts of the involved parties towards a long-lasting peace in Mozambique, with focus on underway process of demobilization, demilitarization and reintegration. The EU Ambassador voiced the EU commitment to continue supporting the implementation of these processes as per the set deadlines.
The Minister Macamo, on the other hand, expressed the Government of Mozambique´s appreciation for EU positive response to the formal request for support in addressing the situation in Cabo Delgado. Both parties (Mozambique and the EU) agreed to deepen discussions on the modalities for humanitarian, development and security assistance.
During the dialogue, the Minister of Foreign Affairs also shared Mozambique´s priorities for its SADC presidency and the EU reiterated its openness to support certain activities such as the SADC Business Forum in Maputo. Bilateral relations between Mozambique and the EU as well as with individual EU Member States has been fruitful over the years, with highlighted focus on the cooperation and partnership for development and in strengthening Mozambique’s capacity towards a sustainable development.
Both delegations reiterated the importance of their multi-layered partnership and praised the developments since the last political dialogue held in June 2019. Such developments include the hosting of two sector political dialogues on Culture and on Governance and Human rights; of the first dialogue on Cabo Delgado and related development, humanitarian, and security challenges, as well as the aspects of EU support for the ADIN – Agência do Desenvolvimento Integrado do Norte. The signing of the financing agreement on EU´s direct budget support to the Government of Mozambique´s response to the COVID-19 pandemic was also a remarkable event.
As part of the EU delegation to the political dialogue were the Ambassadors of Spain, Finland, Ireland, France, Portugal and Sweden, plus the Chargé d´Affairs from Italy and the representatives from Belgium and Austria.