Press release on the Foreign Ministry Collegium meeting
On May 16, Acting Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov chaired the Foreign Ministry Collegium meeting on the subject “Cooperation with Sub-Saharan African countries as part of implementing important tasks of Russian foreign policy.”
The Collegium noted that the consolidation of versatile ties with the Sub-Saharan African countries remains a major part of Russia’s foreign policy strategy, which is acquiring special significance in the context of deep changes in the global arena.
The Collegium identified priorities as follows: maintenance of the high-level of political contacts with the African states, close cooperation in the UN and its Security Council, and the deepening of dialogue on major international issues, in particular, the ensuring of peace and stability in Africa based on the principle of African solutions for African problems.
There is a demand for collective efforts on countering the terrorist threat posed by various terrorist groups that have substantially increased their activities in many African states after the defeat of ISIS in Iraq and Syria. The Collegium emphasised the need for expanding parliamentary cooperation with its African partners, and continued practice of foreign ministry consultations and the work on upgrading the contractual framework.
The Collegium reviewed the tasks for developing trade, economic, scientific and technical cooperation with an emphasis on additional measures to increase and diversify the range of trade with the African countries. Special attention was paid to support for the activities of bilateral intergovernmental commissions and the prospects for cooperation in high-tech and science-intensive areas and banking.
The Collegium noted the need to further strengthen humanitarian contacts and cooperation in personnel training, as well as to step up work with compatriots living in African states.
The Collegium stressed the importance of preserving a common historical memory about the joint struggle for decolonisation and the contribution of this country to ensuring the right of young states to independent development.
The results of the discussion are reported in the resolution adopted by the collegium.