On 10th September the Plenary Session of the Chamber of Deputies approved the ratification of several cooperation agreements signed by the Government with friendly countries, and some international conventions.
These are agreements signed with the Republic of India, for the creation of a mixed cooperation commission, the exemption from visas for diplomatic, official and service passports between the two countries, and the setting up of the International Solar Alliance, the agreements to remove visas for diplomatic, official and service passports signed with the Republic of Ghana, and the Plurinational State of Bolivia, the framework cooperation agreement also signed with Bolivia, the exemption from visas between our country and the Republic of Tunisia, and the MINAMATA Convention on mercury and the NAGOYA Protocol on access to genetic resources and the fair equal participation in the benefits deriving from their use.
Before the plenary session, the Parliamentary Commission on Foreign Policy and Treaties met to look at all the agreements and conventions, in order to adopt the act and verdict containing the results of its deliberations; a session which took place under the moderation of the President of the Parliamentary Institution, Gaudencio Mohaba Mesu, with the participation of a Government delegation led by the Second Vice Prime Minister of the Government, Charged with Parliamentary Relations, A�ngel Masie Mibuy, the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, Simeon Oyono Esono, and the Minister for Agriculture, Livestock, Forests and the Environment, Nicolas Hountondji Akapo.
The Government delegation that took part in the deliberations explained the importance of the agreements signed with India, a country that has a significant human development index, in addition to huge experience in sectors such as industrial agriculture, technology, health, tourism and other services, areas which also form the basis of the aims of the development programme designed by the Executive for Horizonte 2020.
The agreements signed between the two countries are the result of the visits made by the President of the Republic, H. E. Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, made to India, in 2015 and 2018, and the visit made by President H. E. Ram Nath Kovin made to our country in April this year, and confirms the political will of the two statesmen to strengthen the relations of friendship and cooperation between the two States.
The Government is also strengthening ties with countries in our region, in order to boost South-South Cooperation, which justifies the agreement on the exemption of visas for diplomatic, official and service passports signed in August 2017 with the Republic of Ghana, during the State visit made by the President of that country, H. E. Nana Ado, to Equatorial Guinea.
Within the same context of inter-African cooperation, the Government of Tunisia has unilaterally decided to eliminate any entry visa formalities for citizens of the Republic of Equatorial Guinea who wish to enter and remain within Tunisian territory, in a gesture that was highly praised by the President of the Republic, H. E. Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, who on his official visit to the African country, in February, declared his willingness for the Equatoguinean side to act reciprocally, with the removal of the need for visas for Tunisian citizens who wish to enter, leave or stay in our country, for a period of no longer than 90 days.
Furthermore, our country has been extending cooperation with respect to Latin-American countries, through exchanges that, according to the Government, has transformed into strong, solid relations in all political, economic, commercial, social and cultural aspects, with the aim of transforming the Republic of Equatorial Guinea into the entry port to Africa for Spanish-speaking States.
It is within the framework of these exchanges that the Government signed with the Plurinational State of Bolivia a framework cooperation agreement and a visa exemption agreement for diplomatic, official and service passports, in order to facilitate the entry and exit of citizens from the two States on their official visits or when in transit, for a period of no longer than 90 days. The agreements were signed in the Bolivian capital of La Paz, during the official visit of the President of the Republic in November 2017, at the invitation of his counterpart, H. E. Evo Morales.
Apart from bilateral cooperation, the Republic of Equatorial Guinea, as member of the UN Security Council, the Peace and Security Council of the African Union, and the UNESCO Executive Council, is also committed and show solidarity with global initiatives in favour of the well-being of peoples and the planet.
In this spirit, our country has joined the International Solar Alliance, an initiative to promote the use of renewable solar energy, with the aim of providing a global response to the fight against climate control.
The Government is also committed to the conservation of the environment, which justifies the need to ratify the MINAMATA Convention on mercury, which aims to protect human health and the environment from emissions and releases of mercury and its compounds.
The NAGOYA Protocol on access to genetic resources, adopted in the Japanese city of the same name, in October 2010, is in turn based on the Convention on Biological Diversity, adopted by the United Nations in June 1992.
During the plenary session, the two parliamentary groups reiterated their support, through their respective spokespersons, Salvador Nguema Mangue, for the Democratic Coalition, and Miguel Adjang Angue, for the PDGE group, who highlighted the benefits that these agreements and conventions will provide for the country, while praising the Government for prioritising South-South cooperation in its foreign policy, for having previously taken the verdict from the Constitutional Court prior to initiating the ratification process, and because these legal instruments are backed by the opinion of the Council of Ministers.
Following speeches by the spokespersons, the Plenary session of the Chamber of Deputies approved the ratification of the package of agreements and conventions presented, which have been passed to the following parliamentary procedure in the Senate of the Republic.
The Minister for Foreign Affairs thanked the deputies for their unanimous support, reaffirming the commitment of the Government to achieve the aggrandisement of our nation within the international context, prioritising cooperation through mutual respect and reciprocal benefit, and supporting regional, global and continental initiatives which lead to an improvement in the conditions of human life and the environment.
Mohaba Messu, who moderated the deliberations, praised the deputies for the commitment and efficiency shown during the debates, which extended to the Government delegation, reaffirming the support of the parliamentary institution for all initiatives instigated by the Executive, in favour of the well-being of the people of the republic of Equatorial Guinea.
Source: Senate Communication Office