Zim, EU forge ahead with re-engagement
Harare(New Ziana) – The Zimbabwe government and the European Union (EU) will convene another round of political dialogue next month as part of the resuscitated engagement forum between the two, a senior government official said on Tuesday.
Zimbabwe and the EU launched formal political dialogue in June this year following years of informal engagements, opening a new chapter in relations which had soured at the turn of the millennium.
The dialogue framework is based on Article 8 of the Cotonou Partnership Agreement between the EU and African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries which outlines the specific modalities for regular, comprehensive and balanced political dialogue between the two sides.
The dialogue pact between Zimbabwe and the EU is a direct result of the re-engagement agenda being pursued by President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s government.
Foreign Affairs and International Trade permanent secretary James Manzou said dialogue with the EU and other Western countries that had turned hostile to Zimbabwe remained critical.
“Very soon you will see the continuation of our dialogue with the EU, which will be next month,” he told Parliament during a pre-budget hearing.
“It is out of the understanding that only a fully re-engaged Zimbabwe can be able to attract foreign investment.”
Since the coming in of the new dispensation in 2017, Zimbabwe has received massive goodwill and support from the international community particularly Western countries which had turned hostile in protest over the land reform program.
The differences led to, among other things, the imposition of economic sanctions against Zimbabwe by countries opposed to the agrarian reforms.
But in a show of confidence in the new administration, most Western countries have re-opened avenues to rekindle the relationship with Zimbabwe, with the political dialogue pact with the EU being an example of such a re-embrace.