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Senegal wants renewed partnership with EU

The new President of Senegal, Faye, is hoping for investors. He wanted to renew the partnership with the EU, he said during the visit of EU Council President Michel. Among other things, Faye is concerned with renegotiating fishing agreements.

Kai Küstner

It was the first visit by an EU representative to the important West African partner state Senegal after the election. Just at the beginning of this month, the youngest president in his country's history, 44-year-old Bassirou Diomaye Faye, took office there.

There is “dense and diverse cooperation between Europe and Senegal, but together we want a reconsidered, renewed partnership,” explained Faye after his meeting with EU Council President Charles Michel.

Senegal suffers from massive overfishing

The Senegalese came into office with the promise of regaining the sovereignty, i.e. independence, of the country, which in his view was too dependent on foreign countries. In particular, the new government wants to renegotiate oil and gas contracts with foreign companies, but also fisheries agreements with the EU.

Fishing is an important pillar of the economy in Senegal. However, coastal areas suffer from massive overfishing. Michel explained that one should not be afraid to address difficult topics if it brings “benefits for both sides”. He also specifically mentioned fishing.

Hope for investors

Senegal's president then explained that his government was pursuing the development of his country “from within” and that they intended to strengthen the infrastructure in particular, i.e. trains, roads, power and telephone lines. “European investors with proven skills in this area are welcome,” said Faye.

For Germany and Europe, Senegal is an important partner in West Africa because many neighboring states, such as Mali, Niger and Burkina Faso, have turned away from the EU. Despite a political crisis shortly before the recent presidential election, Senegal is considered comparatively democratic and stable – and, unlike some neighboring countries, has never experienced a military coup.

Kai Küstner, NDR, currently Northwest Africa, tagesschau, April 23, 2024 10:46 a.m

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