Home / News / Zambia and Ghana to boost co-operation as President Hichilema receives Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey

Zambia and Ghana to boost co-operation as President Hichilema receives Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey

Ghana and Zambia have pledged to boost cooperation in trade and investment following a visit to Lusaka by Foreign Minister Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey who was received by President Hakainde Hichilema.

“Trade and investment are particularly important for our countries because even our political stability depends on economic stability and development,” President Hichilema told Minister Botchwey at a meeting at the State House in Lusaka on Tuesday.

Ms Botchwey’s visit to Lusaka saw her signing two Memoranda of Understanding (MoU) with her acting Zambian counterpart, Mr Mulambo Haimbe, on behalf of their respective governments.

One memorandum covers mechanisms for promoting commercial, economic, cultural, technical, scientific and political cooperation between Ghana and Zambia.

The other memorandum covers defence cooperation, including training and development.

Ms Botchwey and President Hichilema also addressed her candidacy for the Commonwealth Secretary-General position behind closed doors. Zambia is one of 21 African countries which belong to the 56-member organization that has a combined population of 2.6 billion people and an annual GDP of US$13 trillion and counting.

Commonwealth Heads of Government are due to choose a new leader in October to replace the incumbent, Baroness Patricia Scotland, whose second and final term expires at the end of 2024.

In her remarks, Ms. Botchwey recalled the strong historical bonds between Ghana and Zambia. “Our two countries go back a long way, all the way to the years of our independence struggles led by Presidents Nkrumah and Kaunda,” she said.

Ghanaian diplomats in Lusaka said a strong affinity for Ghana remained in Zambia. Scores of Ghanaian professionals and academics settled and worked in the southern African country from the early post-independence years through the eighties.

“Our people left a good legacy here and it’s a viable foundation for furthering a strong business relationship especially as we now have AfCFTA (African Continental Free Trade Area),” the senior diplomat said.

In a comprehensive lecture given by Ms Botchwey following the announcement of her candidacy in Accra earlier this month, Ms Botchwey outlined her vision for what she called “a new Commonwealth.”

It included a focus on trade and investment; harnessing ICT for skills, innovation and start-ups to provide jobs for young people, and a Commonwealth-wide migration compact to help stem the tide of illegal and perilous migration.

She called for “a strong Commonwealth voice for the concerted action” against climate change which, she said, threatened all member states, but small island developing states more particularly.


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