The European Union (EU) has reaffirmed its commitment to its continued implementation of strategic priorities of the cooperation that exist between the EU and Malawi.
The strategic priorities are outlined in the 11th European Development Fund (EDF) Program for Malawi which among others focuses on supporting governance and accountability, supporting growth and jobs and supporting the most vulnerable through social cash transfer and secondary education.
Ambassador of the European Union to Malawi, Sandra Paesen told journalists in Lilongwe on Tuesday when she presented her Letters of Credence to President Prof Arthur Peter Mutharika at Kamuzu Palace that the EU will continue working with the Malawi Government in order to achieve its potential.
She is looking forward to maintaining and strengthening the good working relationship with the Malawi government including regular political dialogue on Malawi’s ambitions, regional SADC issues and cooperation between EU and Malawi.
However, Paesen said the return to EU’s investment to Malawi depends on having a sound policy framework.
“Beyond our cooperation, we value the dialogue and engagement with Malawi government on the various areas we work on and we appreciate the government’s commitment to dialogue on various issues,” she said.
In her discussion with President Mutharika which was held in camera, Paesen said they discussed the domestic political agenda, the economy and trade and investment agenda, development cooperation and governance, issues relating to elections, the EU external investment plan among other things.
Norwegian Ambassador to Malawi Steinar Egil Hagen told journalists that his government is committed to investing in Malawi saying it is one of the priority countries in its development cooperation.
He said both his government and president Mutharika are of the view that there is need for private sector involvement.
“The president also said that we need more private sector involvement in Malawi and as such the embassy will work with that to stimulate and get private companies from Norway involved in investment in Malawi,” he said.
The Norwegian ambassador to Malawi said his country is expanding its main sectors of health, education, agriculture and good governance issues cooperation and put them in line with Malawi government’s policy to ensure that they are in line with Norwegian development cooperation priorities so that “we can reach the Sustainable Development Goals.”
EU and Malawi relations date back to 1978 while that with Norway dates back to 1965 but the Norwegian embassy was established in Malawi in 1999.