Italy, Ethiopia pen development agreement

Ethiopia and Italy on Thursday signed a cooperation agreement involving three development programs

Ethiopia and Italy on Thursday signed a cooperation agreement involving three development programs

ADDIS ABABA – Ethiopia and Italy on Thursday signed a cooperation agreement involving three development programs – worth a total of 16.1 million euros – to be carried out in the Horn of Africa nation.

The programs will focus on drought resilience and sustainable livelihood; women's economic empowerment and social integration; and the development of the public health system in two regions of Ethiopia.

Ethiopian Finance and Economic Development Minister Sufian Ahmed and Italian Foreign Minister Paolo Gentiloni signed the agreement on Thursday in Addis Ababa.

Gentiloni arrived in the capital on Wednesday afternoon for an official visit to Ethiopia.

"The agreement will improve Ethiopia's capacity for drought resilience, empower women, and improve the health system," Ahmed said following the signing ceremony.

"The agreement we signed shows the commitment of Ethiopia and Italy to boosting cooperation," he added.

Gentiloni, for his part, voiced hope that the agreement would help strengthen existing ties between the two countries.

"We are interested in joining efforts to promote public cooperation and private investment in Ethiopia," the Italian FM added.

The visit is Gentiloni's first to Ethiopia since his appointment last October.

Diplomatic relations between Ethiopia and Italy were first established in 1889.

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