Ethiopia Deputy PM visits India; Sign Mutual Visa Exemption for diplomats

Feb 19: H.E. Mr. Demeke Mekonnen, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, accompanied by a high-level delegation, paid an official visit to India from 17 to 19 February 2021, his first visit to Asia after taking over as Foreign Minister in November 2020.

Dr. S. Jaishankar, External Affairs Minister, held wide-ranging discussions with the Deputy Prime Minister on Friday 19 February 2021, during which they exchanged views on bilateral, regional and global issues. EAM also hosted the DPM at lunch.

The two Ministers jointly inaugurated the newly-constructed Chancery building and Embassy residence of the Embassy of Ethiopia in New Delhi on 18 February 2021. The External Affairs Minister addressed the gathering and spoke of the historic ties between India and Ethiopia and the fillip that these had received with the exchange of high-level visits over the last few years; he also touched upon the flourishing bilateral trade and investment ties and the growing people to people contacts. DPM Mekonnen highlighted the importance of the India-Ethiopia relationship.

ASSOCHAM, in association with the Embassy of Ethiopia in New Delhi, organized the India-Ethiopia Business Forum on 17th February, 2021 at which investment opportunities in Ethiopia were highlighted by the Ethiopian side and by Indian investors. Shri V. Muraleedharan, Minister of State for External Affairs, attended the Forum and, in his address, invited the business communities to take advantage of the trade and investment opportunities on offer and expressed his satisfaction at the role played by Indian educators in Ethiopia. DPM Mekonnen, in his address, also informed the gathering that the Government of Ethiopia was working on new measures to improve the business environment in Ethiopia.

During the visit, the two sides signed an Agreement on Mutual Visa Exemption for holders of Diplomatic Passports and an MoU between the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research – Central Leather Research Institute, India and Wollo University, Ethiopia.