Addis Abeba, October 30/2018 – At the invitation of H. E. Emmanuel Macron, President of the French Republic, H. E. Dr. Abiy Ahmed, Prime Minister of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, made a working visit to France on October 29, 2018.
Taking into account the bonds of friendship between Ethiopia and France, both leaders restated their shared commitment to work towards the strengthening of international peace and security, and their will to deepen the bilateral relationship.
- Political dialogue
1.1. France and Ethiopia intend to deepen their discussions regarding the international agenda in order to find common positions, matching their shared interests, within the context of a historic rapprochement between the countries of the Horn of Africa that was initiated by H. E. Dr. Abiy Ahmed.
1.2. With this in mind and in order to strengthen the bonds of friendship between France and Ethiopia, H. E. Emmanuel Macron, President of the French Republic, will visit Addis Abeba in March 2019.
1.3. France welcomes the rapprochement between Ethiopia and Eritrea; this process opens up promising prospects for the whole region. France wishes that this new dynamic takes into account the interests of all parties in the region.
1.4. Both parties acknowledge the significance of stability and security matters in the Horn of Africa, to which the international community needs to pay special attention. Ethiopia and France will continue their efforts in order to promote peace and prosperity in the region, in particular through their contributions to the success of the African Union Mission to Somalia (AMISOM), the strengthening of the capacities of Somalian forces, and the stabilization of South Sudan following the revitalized peace agreement that was signed on September 12, 2018 in Addis Abeba.
1.5. France restates its support to Ethiopia’s engagement within the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) and to Ethiopia’s committed action within the African Union (AU), whose headquarters are hosted in Addis Abeba.
1.6. France welcomes the bold reforms initiated by the Ethiopian Prime Minister towards the deepening of democracy and of the rule of law, and we wish to reaffirm our support to Ethiopia during the transition phase the country is going through at the moment.
- Economic, trade and development partnership
2.1. France commits to mobilize the international community, within the framework of the French presidency of the G7 in 2019 as well as within international financial institutions (the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund), in support of the reforms initiated by the Ethiopian government.
2.2. France and Ethiopia share the will to increase and diversify trade and investment opportunities, and to ensure a mutually beneficial business environment.
2.3. France commits to work towards the deployment of a program supporting the reforms initiated by H. E. Dr. Abiy Ahmed, in order to back the economic opening-up of Ethiopia.
2.4. France declares itself ready to consider specific ways of implementing the French Development Agency’s support programs, in order to take into account the constraints Ethiopia is facing regarding the balance of payments and the access to foreign currency.
2.5. France commits to promote the opportunities for investment and development of economic activities in Ethiopia towards the French private sector. Ethiopia commits to facilitate the work of French companies in Ethiopia and to promote a conducive environment for the development of the private sector.
2.6. Both parties will strive to:
– develop their bilateral cooperation on economic and financial matters;
– encourage dialogue between their business communities, including through the development of the French-Ethiopian Business Forum;
– encourage investments through a conducive business environment, enabling Ethiopian and French companies willing to invest in France and Ethiopia to receive adequate advice and services;
– work towards solving the issues that companies are facing in France and Ethiopia (specifically regarding the enforcement of tax regulations), in accordance with the applicable legislation.
2.7. Both States welcome the intensification of the French Development Agency’s activities in Ethiopia. For this purpose, France and Ethiopia have signed two declarations of intent regarding:
– the support to Ethiopian Airlines investment program;
– the support to the strengthening of sustainable urban development strategies for the cities of Addis Abeba and Dire Dawa, within the framework of their respective decentralized cooperation strategies.
- Inter-university, educational and linguistic cooperation
3.1. Considering that education and youth are priorities, France and Ethiopia commit to strengthen their inter-university and educational cooperation, including vocational education and training and linguistic cooperation.
3.2. Both parties welcome the expansion of the Lycée français Guébré-Mariam (LGM) in Addis Abeba, as a top-level high school with more than 60% of Ethiopian students. They will facilitate its operations and seek to strengthen its cooperation with the Ethiopian education system.
3.3. Both States will strive to support the increase in the number of Ethiopian students in France, and foster the training of teachers through the co-financing of master and PhD scholarship, in order to support the development of scientific research, together with the French Center for Ethiopian Studies and its partners.
3.4. They will continue their cooperation in order to promote the teaching of the French language in the Ethiopian education system; they will also foster education, inter-university and research partnerships.
- Cultural cooperation
4.1. France and Ethiopia restate their commitment to support linguistic and cultural diversity.
4.2. France fosters the mobilization of Ethiopian young artists and of the Ethiopian civil society within the framework of the Season of African Cultures 2020.
4.3. Both States will continue their cooperation regarding conservation and valorization of heritage, museums and archives, and scholarly and vocational training for heritage-related professions. France commits to share with Ethiopia its expertise in these fields.
- Defense and security cooperation
5.1 France welcomes the very positive role Ethiopia is playing within UN and African (especially AMISOM) peacekeeping operations. Ethiopia and France support the co-financing by the AU and the UN, on a case by case basis, of African peace operations successively authorized by the AU Peace and Security Council and by the UN Security Council.
Distributed by Embassy of the republic of France in Addis Abeba, Ethiopia.