Mnangagwa meets Putin

Zimbabwean President Mnangagwa met his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin. Photo: Zimbabwean Media.

JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA (ADV) -Zimbabwean President Mnangagwa met his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin earlier on today, with two leaders engaging seriously on key economic deals as well as matters of mutual concern on the international arena.

Co-operation between the two countries is presently defined within the context of a Bilateral Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement and the Zimbabwe-Russia Joint Commission.

“Your Excellency, I would wish that we now attend to deepening economic cooperation between our countries, and our country is developing – it is a third-world country – so that you, as a senior brother, can hold my hand as I try to develop Zimbabwe,” said Mnangagwa.

 Mnangagwa who arrived yesterday in Russia for a three-day State visit was received by Mikhail Leonidovich Bogdanov, the Russian Federation’s Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs responsible for relations with the Middle East and Africa, and inspected a Guard of Honour.

According to unconfirmed reports, Mnangagwa and Putin are still engaging on advancement of the US$3 billion Darwendale platinum project, a joint mining and beneficiation venture.

Mnangagwa is accompanied by ministers Winston Chitando (Mines and Mining Development), Perrance Shiri (Lands, Agriculture, Water, Climate and Rural Resettlement), and Prof Mthuli Ncube (Finance and Economic Development).

Also with the President are Dr John Mangudya (Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Governor), George Charamba (Deputy Chief Secretary to the President and Cabinet), among other senior Government officials, as well as representatives of industry and commerce such as investor and businessperson Kuda Tagwirei.

The State visit to Russia is the first stop in President Mnangagwa’s four-nation tour of Eurasia, after which he will head to Davos, Switzerland for the World Economic Forum.

President Mnangagwa is visiting Russia, Kazakhstan, Belarus, Azerbaijan and Switzerland as part of his international engagement and re-engagement drive that comprises one of the key pillars in his drive to make Zimbabwe an upper middle-income economy by 2030.

Among the major economic issues on the table in Moscow will be Mnangagwa’s invitation to Russia’s diamond mining major, Alrosa, to enter the Zimbabwe market and help develop the sector.

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