Africa to create strategic partnership

Published on Thursday 26th June 2008

Egypt: Africa would like to build strategic partnership with other countries and regions on a win-win basis, a senior African Union (AU) official said here Thursday.

Mohammed Omar Maundi, chairperson of the AU Permanent Representatives Committee (PRC) and also the Tanzanian Ambassador to Ethiopia, said the concept of partnership is very important for Africa as a complementary element to Africa's own efforts for development.

Talking about partnership, the ambassador noted that Africa's idea is to do things not in a way that partnership had been used previously, but to see partnership as really result-oriented.

"This does not mean it's like a situation of war where there must be a winner or a loser, but is a win-win situation whereby Africa and its partners will benefit from whatever the partnership that will be engaged on," he added.

He also termed economic development as a big challenge for Africa, which is struggling to eradicate poverty and gaining better life for its people.

"Africa is constrained to an extent. Africa is endowed with a lot of natural resources, but it needs to harvest," Maundi said.

The PRC ordinary session was held on Tuesday and Wednesday, with discussion on administrative, political, economic, social and cultural matters.

AU's various strategic relations with some countries and regions including China and India are also top on the PRC session agenda and a PRC report is expected to be adopted later Thursday, according to Maundi.

The PRC session is followed by a foreign ministerial meeting of the AU Executive Council to be held on June 27-28 and the 11th AU Summit from June 30 to July 1 in the Egyptian Red Sea Resort Sharm El-Sheikh, under the summit theme of "Meeting the Millennium Development Goals on Water and Sanitation."