The President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko is expected to arrive in Zimbabwe on 30 January 2023.
Lukashenko comes at the invitation by President Emmerson Mnangagwa. Belarus and Zimbabwe enjoy diplomatic and business relations.
Zimbabwe imports tractors from Belarus.
Zimbabwe, it should be noted that the leadership of this country has long been interested in cooperation with Belarus. The history of bilateral relations includes visits at the highest levels.
The then Vice President of Zimbabwe John Nkomo visited Minsk in April 2011. “We hope very much, and apparently it will be so, that from that day on we will begin to expand relations between our countries,” the Belarusian head of state said then.
“We hope that cooperation with your country will help us expand cooperation with other African countries from your territory. There is no area, no industry where we would not find common interests.”
A few years later, in July 2015, current leader of Zimbabwe Mnangagwa, vice president then, visited Belarus. “I think our cooperation should have started with specific projects. Let them be few.
“But it would be a signal not only to entrepreneurs in your country but also to other countries with which you border, a signal to cooperate with our country. We are very interested in it,” the Belarusian president said.
In turn, Mnangagwa said that Zimbabwe was interested in expanding trade and economic cooperation, as well as cooperation in such areas as agriculture, mining and infrastructure.
Mnangagwa was welcomed in Minsk as head of state in January 2019. Belarus offered Zimbabwe to build a strategy and a concrete plan to develop cooperation in the future.
“We cooperate very effectively with the countries of North Africa, first of all with our friendly partner Egypt, Algeria, other countries. In Central Africa, we have a long-standing cooperation with Sudan.
“We would like to have a very close cooperation with the states of South Africa as well. We have been to many countries in Africa and we see that Belarus can do a lot in Zimbabwe,” Lukashenko said during the talks.
Apparently, the Belarusian president said he would be happy to visit Zimbabwe, and added that it was necessary to agree on and implement four or five specific projects there before doing so.
“I am talking about the projects that the Zimbabwean people would see,” he said.
“Zimbabwe is our important partner in the South African region, and we are committed to gradually reaching the highest level of strategic cooperation.
“The two countries have been steadily developing relations. However, the potential for interaction is still hugely untapped. In the coming years, we will have to do so, especially in the areas of trade and economy,” he added.