I’m very pleased with the promising talks we had on bilateral issues in the Ethiopian capital, Addis-Ababa, with Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn and Foreign Minister Tedros Adhanom as well as with the talks at the African Union headquarters with the Chairperson of the AU Commission Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma.
Relations between Russia and the African Union are based on decades of friendship, mutual respect and solidarity. Russia supported the liberation of the African countries from their colonial dependence, rendered them practical assistance in building their states and strengthening their sovereignty at a time when this was not popular with many Western politicians. Today these long-standing traditions of friendship and solidarity form the basis of our relations and our very impressive plans.
We completely agree with our African friends that the key issue today is ensuring that the African states have sound economies. Russia and Russian companies, both state-owned and private, see African countries as reliable and highly promising partners in mutually beneficial projects. Cooperative projects, including the peaceful use of nuclear energy, are increasing in number. Russia’s cooperation with Algeria, the RSA and some other African countries envisage such plans. There are also plans in other energy fields, for example in hydroelectric power and the development of the continent’s infrastructure, something Chairperson Dlamini-Zuma was speaking about today. We have very rich traditions in humanitarian activities, in education, science and culture. Today Ms Chairperson expressed an interest in giving higher priority to scientific-technical cooperation between Russia and the African states. We are willing to do this and we will do this.