Briefing of Foreign Minister of Armenia Zohrab Mnatsakanyan with the Ethiopian journalists following the meeting with the Minister of Innovation and Technology

04 April, 2019

Question: Thank you for the interview. Can you please tell us about the cooperation? What the focus of cooperation is going to be? Who is going to be the part of the projects?

Zohrab Mnatsakanyan: Thank you very much. In fact, let me start with thanking profoundly the  Government of Ethiopia, and Minister Mekuria in particular, for hosting us here today, for hosting this very important meeting today, the very important visit for Armenia.

We attach so much importance to discovering and unraveling all that wonderful potential that exists in expanding the cooperation between Armenia and Ethiopia. We are two nations, two people who have known each other for a very long time in history. We have deep historical roots.

Now we have the opportunity as nation states, as countries to further expand and amplify that cooperation for the benefit of our nations, for the development of our nations, for bringing our people closer together.

So we believe that, especially in the present age of development, it is a common acknowledgement of the fact that only smart development, the development, in which the talent of our people is fully amplified and unleashed, is the way in which we can provide sustainable development, development which really stays, which really makes people owners of their development.

So innovation, information technologies and high technologies are exactly the tools that need to be transferred in the hands of the people so that they are looking after their lives and their wealth generation.

We in Armenia have a very interesting example, a very interesting national experience of exactly developing that sector in our economy, the sector of high technologies, creative education. I'm very proud that over these years now we have come to a point that 7.4 percent of our GDP is developed in that sector; that the growth in that sector annually over the past eight years has been well over 25 percent. And that gives us the actual tangible result when we see the people, the young talent, that so confidently is taking their life in their hands and taking their development in their hands.

So we're very keen to share our experience. We have discussed together the various ways in which we can work together. We know the very strong potential of Ethiopia and we are very keen to put together all those potential so that we - the two nations - we can work together and mutually benefit and make this cooperation work for our people. So we believe we have very good potential for that. And thank you very much my good friend, my colleague for the warm welcome and this productive discussion. I had in my delegation also representatives of that sector who shared firsthand what is what. It is not for me to tell you to tell my colleagues in Ethiopia... but for the actual operators which they were doing.

And I'm really grateful that they were doing a good job and we also have an important memorandum signed between the two entities to promote and provide that opportunity for innovation and creative education. We have the very good engineering city in Armenia which can be a very good partner to its Ethiopian counterpart and work together towards this collaboration. So I'm really hopeful that this visit will be a good start for a better stronger tangible cooperation between our nations. And I'm looking forward to also seeing my colleague in Armenia which will be a very good opportunity to continue this collaboration and for the governments to work together to help our business communities.

Thank you.



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