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Italy-Zambia: Ambassador Maggiore to "Nova", a country with "Great Potential".



Italy-Zambia: Ambassador Maggiore to

Rome, 02 Oct - (Nova): Italy has always been very present in Zambia, a country that has "great potentiality" that must be deepened especially by intensifying economic, trade and cultural relations. This is what the new Italian ambassador in Lusaka, Antonino Maggiore, has declared. Tomorrow, October 3rd, he will present his credentials to President Edgar Lungu. On the eve of his official inauguration, the diplomat wanted to illustrate to "Agenzia Nova" his guidelines to strengthen the collaboration between Italy and Zambia, starting from some areas such as energy, agriculture and infrastructure, but also culture, education and art. "Italy has always been very present in the history of Zambia since its independence in 1964, when we were already present with a large community of about 4,000 people, closely active and involved in the life of the country from the beginning, so much so that the Financial Times speaks of an "Italian invasion" of Zambia." recalled Maggiore.

Today "we have a smaller community (about 700 people) but equally active, whose presence is much appreciated. This historical relationship can serve as a basis for strengthening bilateral relations in all sectors, in particular in the economic sector, which offers excellent potential with an exchange of about 70 million euros: a figure that is not very high but nonetheless significant if we consider that in the EU we are the third importing country and the sixth exporter," said the ambassador, stressing the need to "do a significant work on exports" to intensify trade relations. The attention of the new Italian ambassador then focused on the significant presence of companies in the African country. "Enel has made a significant investment by building a 34 megawatt solar photovoltaic plant, which represents the starting point for Enel Green Power's presence in the country and demonstrates what Italian companies can do and the leading role they can play, particularly in the energy, agriculture and infrastructure sectors, which represent three priority areas for us".

In this regard, continued Maggiore, the Italian Embassy in Lusaka intends to organize a workshop on renewable energy by the end of the year and one on agriculture in April 2020, on the sidelines of the Agritech Fair (the fair dedicated to machinery and technology for agriculture), "where Italian companies can play an important role because they have the technology and 'know how' much in demand in Zambia. We can also take advantage of the opportunities that emerge from the programs of international organizations (World Bank, African Development Bank and EU), and have been launched financing projects for European companies in these areas", added the ambassador. About cultural sector, Zambia is a case of "best practice" thanks to the presence of the Italo-Zambian Cultural Centre, "a real Italian cultural Centre created by the association of the Italian community, which manages privately the Italian school (which currently has over 400 students) and therefore, with the profits made, has decided to invest financially in the creation of the Centre. This one constitutes a 'unicum' here in Lusaka, and we will be the only country to have a structure dedicated to the promotion of events for the Zambian and international public".

The Centre is "a tool for promoting the country system that the embassy will be able to use, as well as an excellent example of collaboration between public and private, and (through the Italian school) also hosts the Italian language courses of the Dante Alighieri Committee", recalled the ambassador, who then highlighted the role of great importance of 12 Italian non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in the country, "which play an excellent activity of cooperation in health, training and aid to women and children. Maggiore finally announced his intention to organize, in collaboration with the ICE Agency and the Farnesina, a "country presentation" in Italy in order to "present opportunities on Zambia to entrepreneurs". "Africa - concluded the Ambassador - is one of the priorities of the Italian government and, as such, it is also one of the priorities in terms of opportunities for Italian companies".