Added by Erik West on July 24, 2012
The European Commission announced on Tuesday the signing of an agreement with Angola that strengthens their bilateral relationship.
“The intensified dialogue and cooperation between Angola and the European Union will cover several areas, including peace and security, economic growth and sustainable development, good governance and human rights, energy, transport, environment, science and technology, and education,” said a press release by the European Commission.
Experts say relations between Angola and the European Union have been strengthening during the past ten years. A visit by the President of European Commission, Jose Manuel Durão Barroso, paved the way for the achievement of the agreement, according to those familiar with the matter.
The EU is Angola’s third-largest overall trading partner, yet is the largest exporter to Angola. The EU has allocated 250m euro through a multi-year cooperation program covering areas that include water and sanitation, human rights, and rural development.
In 2002, Angola emerged from a 14-year civil war that began immediately after it gained independence from Portugal in 1975. Angola, with a population of 20m, is Africa’s second-largest producer of oil – Nigeria is the largest producer of oil; the country’s GDP tripled between 2004 and 2008. Estimates of foreign investments are of about US$10bn per year.
Angolans are expected to elect a new parliament on August 31 – the second time in the country’s history. Under the country’s constitution, adopted in 2010, the leader of the winning party becomes the country’s president.