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Lusa - Business News - Cabo Verde: Pandemic example of success with EU




Praia, Nov.25,2022(Lusa)- The support of the European Union (EU) to Cabo Verde in the Covid-19 pandemic was highlighted on Friday as one of the successful results of the Special Partnership that marks 15 years, but with the archipelago wanting more.
"I think that the pandemic was a great challenge for everyone and was also an example of how the Special Partnership can serve Cabo Verde," said EU Ambassador Carla Grijó today, on the sidelines of an event in Praia marking the 15th anniversary of the Special Partnership established by the European Union with Cabo Verde.
"Our Europe team was very important in donating vaccines in quantities and on time. It was a joint effort because it is not enough for vaccines to be available. The government that receives them needs to have the logistical capacity to administer them," said the Portuguese diplomat and EU ambassador in Praia.
Speaking to journalists, Carla Grijó said that Cabo Verde "has shown great capacity for organisation" of the vaccination campaign, in which 98.6% of the eligible adult population has received at least the first dose of the vaccine against Covid-19 and 86.4% the second dose, while 38.5% have also received a booster dose, according to government data.
"It has been very important. Today in Cabo Verde we have very high levels of vaccination, among the highest in the world, I wouldn't say only in Africa, in the world. And that in itself is the result of the partnership of the European Union and its member states with Cabo Verde. Therefore, it is a concrete example of a challenge, yes, that challenged us all, but that we managed, through partnership, to overcome", he said.
In 2007, after a long period of negotiations, the EU and Cabo Verde signed a special partnership agreement, the only one of its kind on the African continent. It covers areas such as good governance, security and stability, regional integration, technical and regulatory convergence, the information and knowledge society, the fight against poverty and development, but Cabo Verde has already expressed its intention to introduce other pillars.
"The positioning of Cabo Verde as a safe country and with strong alliances for defence and cooperative security in the areas of maritime security, cybersecurity and transnational crimes are priorities and challenges that we want to achieve and win with the strengthening of our Special EU Partnership, for a more resilient Cabo Verde and with a more diversified economy," the prime minister, Ulisses Correia e Silva, emphasised in his speech at today's event.
"Our specificities as a diaspora country, a small island state under development, inserted in Macaronesia and with a geostrategic location that places us between the African continent, Europe, Brazil and the United States should be valued as distinctive factors in our relations of partnership and alliances for sustainable development, investment, economic transactions and for defence and security," stressed the head of government.
Ulisses Correia e Silva also recalled the crises that have affected the archipelago, from consecutive droughts to the absence of tourism due to Covid-19 and now the inflationary crisis caused by the war in Ukraine, as well as the respective support from the European bloc.
"From 2017 to 2021, Cabo Verde was buffeted by severe droughts, the worst in 40 years. The European Union provided a rapid response and extraordinary support for the programme to mitigate the droughts and the bad agricultural years. I would also like to acknowledge the prompt response of the European Union and European countries at the bilateral level in supporting Cabo Verde in combating the Covid-19 pandemic. The availability of vaccines in time and quantity was crucial to the success of this fight that still continues", he said.
For the European Union ambassador, after 15 years of the Special Partnership it is possible to take a "retrospective look back and see the gains that have been made," and envisage "a broad area for cooperation in the future.
"The EU also gains from the partnership with Cabo Verde. It is very important for the EU to have partners who share the same values. The democratic rule of law, respect for human rights, transparency, good governance, all these are characteristics that allow our relationship to be, in fact, that of special partners", said Carla Grijó.
She acknowledged, however, that "much remains to be done" and that the EU "is strongly committed to supporting Cabo Verde in meeting its national targets for 2030", not least because it will help Europe "to meet our own targets".
"There are issues - I am speaking, for example, of climate change - where no country, however big it may be, can solve it alone. We always have to create conditions for collective decisions and I come back to the issue of values. It is much easier for this to happen when countries, in this case the European Union is not one country, but brings together a group of 27 member states that share with Cabo Verde the same objectives, particularly in relation to the green transition and other digital transformation", he added.
The prime minister stressed that the Strategic Partnership signed in 2007 "is in fact a high point" in the relationship with the EU, which resulted from "a common will that has contributed greatly to the development process of Cabo Verde," in terms of good governance, security and stability, strengthening of island capital, knowledge society, social inclusion and cohesion and the economy, but which was followed by other steps.
"The mobility partnership, reinforced with the agreement on the simplification of visa rules, is another important milestone in our relations. The Generalised System of Preferences for facilitating the entry of Cabo Verde products into the European Union is and have been important for the economy of this country. We improved the fisheries agreement in 2019 and we have room and willingness to improve the next agreement," the head of government predicted.
PVJ/ADB // ADB.
Lusa


Agency : LUSA

Date : 2022-11-26 00:24:00







 

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