New EU envoy to AU commits to strengthening continent-to-continent partnerships

Head of the EU Delegation to AU Ambassador Birgitte Markussen presents credentials to AU Commission chief Moussa Faki/ EU

The new head of the EU Delegation to the African Union Ambassador Birgitte Markussen on Monday officially started her tour of duty on the continent. This after presenting her credentials to AU Commission Chairman Moussa Faki.

Faki said he looks forward to continuing to strengthen strategic continent-to-continent partnership with Ambassador Markussen’s team.

Markussen said Africa is Europe’s closest neighbour, and that she is honoured, as EU ambassador, to work together on further strengthening AU-EU partnership.

“Today’s challenges – Covid-19, climate change, rules-based multilateral system –  signify opportunities for AU-EU cooperation and demonstrate full value of partnership,” she said.

Markussen, former European External Action Service (EEAS) Deputy Managing Director Africa, succeeds Ambassador Ranieri Sabatucci, who was posted to Myanmar.

Her task now is to implement the new EU strategy in Africa.

President of the European Commission and the High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy proposed the basis for a new strategy with Africa on March 9.

The document proposes to strengthen EU-Africa cooperation through partnerships in five key areas. These are green transition; digital transformation; sustainable growth and jobs; peace and governance; migration and mobility.

It sets out the opportunities and challenges faced by both continents and suggests 10 action points as a basis for future action.

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