The Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of The Gambia to the Kingdom of Belgium, His Excellency Ambassador Pa Musa Jobarteh on Wednesday, 8th February 2023 presented his letter of Credence and of recall of his predecessor to His Majesty Philippe, King of the Belgians at the Royal Palace in Brussels.
Following presentation of his credential, Ambassador Jobarteh was invited to a closed-door meeting by His Majesty the King. During the tete-a-tete, Ambassador Jobarteh extended warm greetings of President Adama Barrow to King Philippe, as well as the heartfelt felicitations of the Government and People of The Republic of The Gambia on the 10-year anniversary of his prosperous reign as King of the Belgians.
Being aware of the difficult economic circumstances around the world, the Belgian King in his exchange with Ambassador Jobarteh expressed interest on the impact of the crisis in Ukraine on The Gambia; the political and development support to The Gambia by both Belgium and the European Union, with specific mention of the Gambia Ports expansion project which is of crucial importance to facilitating trade and economic cooperation. King Philippe also fondly recalled meeting President Barrow in Belgium during the 2018 International Conference on The Gambia.
Ambassador Jobarteh expressed appreciation of Belgium and the EU as the most important development support partners of The Gambia. He informed the King of the development aspirations of President Barrow and his government, which encompasses post-COVID recovery, mitigating the impacts of the crisis in Ukraine on food security and high cost of energy prices and global inflation.
On bilateral cooperation, Ambassador Jobarteh reiterated the friendly ties that exist between the two countries, governments and peoples, which transcend bilateral development and socio-economic cooperation. He highlighted the important role that Brussels Airlines continues to play in connecting Gambia with the EU which is essential for people-to-people exchanges with many more Belgian tourists and philanthropist organizations active in The Gambia.
Ambassador Jobarteh underscored the commitment of the Government of The Gambia to the maintenance and entrenchment of peace and security as a prerequisite for sustainable economic development. This, he buttressed, is especially important as the Government implements its reform agenda in various sectors of Governance including the security and the judiciary. He reassured the His Majesty of The President’s commitment to this reform and transformative agenda as a means of fulfilling his social contract obligations to Gambians.
The Gambia’s Ambassador to Belgium also made emphasis on President Barrow’s aspiration to sustain The Gambia’s newfound democracy which would require a lot of development support, cooperation, and capacity building. He ended by soliciting the support of the King and the Government of the Kingdom of Belgium towards this end.
H.E Ambassador Jobarteh was accompanied by officials of The Gambia Embassy in Brussels.