Bangui, the capital of the Central African Republic, has been preparing to receive a dozen heads of state and government for the second summit meeting of French-speaking countries of the continent.
GV Central Bangui street scene
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Background: Bangui, the capital of the Central African Republic, has been preparing to receive a dozen heads of state and government for the second summit meeting of French-speaking countries of the continent.
The meeting had originally been scheduled for Thursday (6 March), but was postponed to Friday (7 March) to enable ministers of the participating countries to discuss economic questions which are then to go before the summit meeting itself.
The French Co-operation Minister, M. Pierre Abelin, announced this postponement shortly before the arrival in Bangui of French President Valery Giscard d'Estaing on Wednesday (5 March). The French President is due to stay for four days -- two days longer than the summit meeting's schedule.
High on the agenda for both the summit and the preceding ministerial meeting, M. Abelin said, are the "huge economic problems of the moment -- notably world inflation and the energy crisis".
There matters also headed the list of topics at this week's convention in Togo's capital, Lome, between the EEC and 46 African, Caribbean and Pacific developing countries. This Lome meeting was attended by the Finance Ministers of France and the other 12 members of the Franc Zone -- Cameroun, the Central African Republic, Chad, Congo, Dahomey, the Republic of Gabon, Ivory Coast, Mali, Niger, Senegal, Togo and Upper Volta.