Angola, Italy strengthens historic relations – Overview

The historical, cultural, political, diplomatic relations between Angola and Italy constitute a strong foundation for both countries, and have been strengthened with the state visit by the Angolan President to the European country.

“We are here to seal the ties of friendship and cooperation with Italy,” the Angolan Head of State said at the end of the meeting with his Italian counterpart, Sergio Mattarella, on Wednesday, the first day of the visit.

Angolan President João Lourenço expressed the country’s availability to welcome the Italian businesspeople who want to invest in the country’s market.

During two-day visit of João Lourenço to Italy, started on Wednesday, the two States (Angola and Italy) signed several cooperation agreements, particularly in the areas of oil, transport, finance and health.

The main focus went to the agreement signed between Italian company Eni and Angola’s Sonangol, formalised in the presence of the Angolan head of State João Lourenço and the Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni.

The Memorandum of Understanding aims to broaden areas of cooperation between the two companies, via studies in the area of agri-business value chain and other decarbonisation sectors.

At the Italian Parliament, João Lourenço met with the leader of the Senate, Ignacio La Russa, and with the president of that sovereign body, Lorenzo Fontana.

On Wednesday, President João Lourenço paid homage in Rome to the Unknown Soldier by laying a wreath at the monument known as “Altar of the Homeland”.

Still on Wednesday evening, João Lourenço was awarded by President Sergio Mattarella with the Order of Merit of the Italian Republic.

On the same occasion, the Angolan Head of State granted the Agostinho Neto Order to his counterpart Sergio Mattarella, as well as to the First Lady, Laura Mattarella.

On Thursday, the last day of the visit, the Angolan Head of State attended the Italy-Angola Economic Forum, organised by the business association Confindustria Assafrica in collaboration with the Private Investment and Export Promotion Agency (AIPEX).

At the meeting, the President of the Republic encouraged the Italian businessmen to invest in different branches of the Angolan economy and their participation in public investment projects.

Also on Thursday, the Angolan Head of State visited the Rome City Hall and the ENI Technological Centre.

This is an advanced centre for science and knowledge that has over 1,000 researchers, some of them Angolans.

More dynamic and diversified cooperation

Angola is Italy’s third sub-Saharan African commercial partner, after South Africa and Nigeria.

The Italian government has considered Angola a priority country for its cooperation strategy in sub-Saharan Africa since 1989.

The two countries formalised diplomatic and cooperation relations on 4 June, 1976 and on 3 August, 1977 signed the Technical Cooperation Agreement, as well as the Memorandum of Intent through which the Joint Commission was created.

Angola and Italy signed the first legal instrument, called the Air Transport Agreement, on April 10, 1976.

Source: Angola Press News Agency (APNA)