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Lusaka, 25th March 2021

The Government of Zambia held a Political Dialogue session with the European Union and its Member States. The meeting was co-chaired by the Honourable Joseph Malanji, Minister of Foreign Affairs and H.E. Jacek Jankowski, Head of EU Delegation. Other participants included the Ministers of Home Affairs, Justice, National Development Planning, Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, and Permanent Secretaries from the Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Health, Finance and the Office of the Vice President. as well as the Ambassadors of the Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy and Sweden.

Zambia and the European Union regularly hold Political Dialogue sessions in accordance with Article 8 of the Agreement between the EU and ACP countries (Africa, Caribbean and Pacific). The agenda of today’s Zambia-EU Political Dialogue strongly focussed on the electoral process. Participants also discussed the response to the COVID-19 pandemic and exchanged views on the economic and financial situation in Zambia. Another important point on the agenda was the programming for the Zambia – European partnership in the period 2021 – 2027. Finally, the participants compared notes on the regional situation in Southern Africa.
In his opening remarks, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hon. Joseph Malanji said: ‘‘since the introduction of multiparty democracy in 1991, subsequent Administrations of the Republic of Zambia have upheld our commitment to democratic principles, which include the regular holding of peaceful elections. I wish to assure you, Your Excellencies, the forthcoming elections will follow our established tradition as Zambia further entrenches her Democratic credentials The Patriotic Front Government of His Excellency, Mr. Edgar Chagwa Lungu shall ensure that Zambians are once again provided with free, fair, transparent, peaceful and credible elections.’’
The Minister reaffirmed Zambia’s long-standing commitment to the support rendered by all partners, including the European Union, to ensure that credible, transparent and inclusive elections are held in the country. The Zambian Government looks forward to the positive outcome of the Exploratory Mission and the subsequent deployment of the EU Observation Mission in August.

In his response, the EU Ambassador, H.E. Jacek Jankowski underlined the importance of the EU-Zambia partnership and stated that “The EU attaches a lot of importance to its partnership with Zambia and with the Zambian people. A primary interest of the European Union and its Member States is that Zambia maintains its position as a peaceful and stable country, a force for peace and stability in Southern Africa. Our sincere wish is therefore to see that the elections in August 2021 take place in a peaceful manner, in accordance with Zambia’s Constitution and international standards. There should be a level playing field for all candidates and people should freely express their choice through the ballot box”.

Both sides agreed to follow up on the commitments made during the meeting. They agreed to continue the Political Dialogue between Zambia and the European Union and to this end organize another session in due course.

Mrs Namambo DELOT, Press/information officer


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