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Portugal welcomes start of EU-Angola negotiations to facilitate investments

The Portuguese presidency of the Council of the European Union (EU) on Wednesday "warmly" welcomed the start of negotiations between Angola and the EU on a sustainable investment facilitation agreement, arguing that it will "strengthen the bilateral investment relationship.

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"The agreement will strengthen the bilateral investment relationship between the EU and Angola, contributing to mutually beneficial sustainable investments, economic growth, job creation and diversification of the Angolan economy," reads a statement published by the Portuguese presidency.

Noting that this is "the EU's first bilateral investment facilitation agreement with a third country," Portugal noted that the agreement would serve to improve the "transparency, predictability and coherence of investment-related measures.

In addition, it recalls, the agreement will also address the "rationalization and acceleration of administrative procedures and requirements, and the assurance of good governance in authorization procedures," as well as "sustainable development and responsible investment."

On the trade relationship between the EU and Angola, the presidency stresses that the agreement will "enhance bilateral cooperation" and "facilitate investment."

The European Commission announced Tuesday that the EU and Angola have started, by videoconference, the first round of negotiations to reach an agreement on investment facilitation, the first such agreement to be negotiated by the EU.

According to the European Commission, the agreement aims to "facilitate investments by improving the transparency and predictability of investment measures," but also to "help small and medium-sized companies that find it difficult to invest abroad.

In addition, both the EU and Angola want to "simplify procedures," "improve public-private dialogue," and "promote sustainable development and responsible investment," and, the EU executive says, the agreement will support the country's "efforts" to "attract and retain investment by improving the investment climate for both foreign and local investors."

The start of negotiations with Angola is part of the EU's strategy to "increase its collaboration with African partners to unlock their economic potential, promote economic diversification and foster inclusive growth."

"These agreements also serve to further enhance sustainable trade and investment links between the two continents, but also within Africa itself," the European Commission further points out.

At the 5th Angola-EU Ministerial Meeting - Joint Pathway (on September 8, 2020), the parties had already confirmed their intention to start exploratory discussions for an EU-Angola investment agreement.

On 23 March 2021, the commission adopted a recommendation for a Council decision authorizing the opening of negotiations with Angola for an agreement on investment facilitation.

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