“Portugal and Angola are experiencing an absolutely exceptional moment in their bilateral relationship”, said Santos Silva, explaining that “between 2018 and today there are already 50 cooperation instruments signed between the two countries”.
Santos Silva’s statements were made at a joint press conference, in Lisbon, with his Angolan counterpart, Téte António, after a meeting of the Portugal-Angola Intergovernmental Mixed Commission (CMI).
Among these instruments signed in recent years, Santos Silva highlighted a convention to avoid double taxation, the agreement for visa facilitation and also highlighted cooperation in the area of health and in the fight against the covid-19 pandemic, which “today is the most relevant areas “.
“Our cooperation in the health area has a particular expression in supporting vaccination. With the batch that arrives in Luanda today, we have surpassed 700,000 doses of vaccines donated to Angola”, he pointed out.
Currently, Portugal has already made more than 1.2 million vaccines for its essential cooperation partners, such as Portuguese-speaking African countries and Timor-Leste, and has increased its international donation target to 4 million between this year and next , said the minister.
Santos Silva also thanked the Angolan authorities for the support given to the operations of repatriation of citizens from both countries, when the connections were interrupted during the first wave of the pandemic.
After an initial meeting in Luanda, in December 2019, this was the second meeting of the WCC “a new instrument whose main objectives are to promote the development of the bilateral relationship, follow up on the bilateral instruments signed and under negotiation and allow consultations on topics of common interest also at the international level, reference is made to the final communiqué of the meeting.
“All relevant areas of cooperation were evaluated,” said the Portuguese minister.
In turn, the Angolan minister thanked the support that Portugal has given to a vaccination campaign in Angola.
In response to a question about the fight against corruption in Angola, the minister said that “it is not done in a day or in two days” and added that it is “a work in progress”, which is being done “in various aspects, at the internal level , but also with international cooperation”.
“It is a work in progress that will bear fruit,” said the head of the Angolan diplomacy, without wanting to “go into details”.
Santos Silva added that “as an observer” he considers that “the cooperation between the judicial authorities of Angola and Portugal has been absolutely exemplary” in this field.
Asked about the “delay” in visa visas at the Portuguese consulate in Luanda, the Portuguese minister said that the current changes to mobility arise mainly due to the pandemic, but added that the Portuguese consulates “should guarantee essential visas for Angolan citizens who have happened to travel to Portugal for health, study, professional, family or other relevant reasons. This is now absolutely clarified “after” some doubts of interpretation that arose in the process “.
The minister also pointed out that on the Portuguese side “an effort to modernize” consular services is being made, namely in Portuguese-speaking African countries, so that there is an adaptation to the “and challenges” of the agreement for mobility in the Community. Portuguese Language Countries (CPLP).
The next CMI meeting will take place in Angola in the first half of 2022.