Zimbabwe has become the 60th signatory of the Lome Convention under which the European Economic Community (EEC) grants special aid and trade concessions to developing countries in Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific.
SV INTERIOR EEC and Zimbabwe officials gathering for meeting in Luxembourg (2 shots)
CU Gastom Thorn, President of EEC Council of Ministers, speaking in English
GV Thorn shakes hands with other delegates and speaks in English
TRANSCRIPT: SEQ. 2: THORN: "No sooner had it takin its place in the community of nations than one of Zimbabwe's first international acts was to apply for accession to the Lome convention thus marking a clear preference for the type of co-operation which the convention sets up between Europe and the ACP states (Info: Africa, Caribbean and the Pacific) in their mutual interests. All the partners of the Lome convention were sensible of this choice. Of those full scopes they are well aware and at the ACP-EEC council meeting in Nairobi they have a prompt and positive reply. By virtue of its accession to the convention, Zimbabwe will be party to and also benefit from all the instruments and means of action deployed under that convention, including financial co-operation in the context of which I could mention in passing Zimbabwe can, if it so "wishes, find special support for the development of its co-operation with its neighbours, the (indistinct) and value of which do not need to be underlined. We are convinced that this accession will also provide a significant boost to consolidation and development of this young state. But at the same time we are aware of the invaluable asset which Zimbabwe represents for the strengthening of the Lome convention and the defence of the principles under which it is based. Zimbabwe today joins a group of free countries in Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific which have a common destiny and a common aspiration with Europe and endeavours with Europe to forge a better future for its peoples. And each of us in the community and in the ACP states would like on this occasion to pay solemn tribute to President Mugabe under whose supreme guidance your country has found its dignity and now commences its existence within the international community. To the resolute people of Zimbabwe we convey the brotherly and trustful greetings of our peoples and their warmest wishes for your happiness and your future. If I may shake hands across the table, good luck."
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: Zimbabwe has become the 60th signatory of the Lome Convention under which the European Economic Community (EEC) grants special aid and trade concessions to developing countries in Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific. The agreement was signed on Tuesday (4 November) by David Smith, Zimbabwe's Minister for Trade and commerce and by Gaston Thorn, the President of the EEC Council of Ministers.
SYNOPSIS: Mr. Thorn said the convention would be strengthened by Zimbabwe' membership, when he spoke at a special ceremony in Luxembourg.