Seychelles to open embassy in Ethiopia


09-April-2012

The minster responsible for Foreign Affair Jean-Paul Adam made the announcement in the National Assembly last week while answering several questions relating to his ministry.

Mr Adam said this forms part of his ministry’s strategic plan to open an embassy every year depending on the economic situation of Seychelles and the budget his ministry gets.

He stressed though that an embassy in the Addis Ababa is going to be very important for Seychelles due to “our increasing engagements within the African Union (AU) of which we are a member, and also because many of our partners are strengthening and increasing cooperation through the AU”.

“This will therefore be mostly for diplomatic reasons rather than economic”, said Mr Adam. 
Mr Adam said his ministry is also considering an embassy in Latin America, this being a region which is developing very fast. But he added that this will depend on the financial situation of our country.

“We need to be able to financially sustain the operation of these embassies,” he stressed.
He said our plan remains – to be present as much as possible in regions where we can obtain the most benefits and which are the most viable for Seychelles.

Among the other questions Mr Adam answered was one on the criteria used when negotiating visa exemptions.

He explained while visitors do not need a visa to enter our country there are certain regulations which they need to abide by. And above that, all our partners are encouraged to consider doing the same when Seychellois residents visit other countries. To date Seychellois residents can visit 72 countries without a visa, Mr Adam said.

He noted it is the priority of his ministry to encourage all our partners to consider visa exemption for Seychellois visitors but added every sovereign country has its own policies and set regulations in its interest. But he added that his ministry continues to negotiate visa exemption with countries where there are large Seychellois communities and where Seychellois travel a lot for different reasons.

The criteria used for such negotiations include close diplomatic relations, technical and economic cooperation, countries where a large number of Seychellois do business, countries with which Seychelles share links through international and regional bodies. Mr Adam noted that there are also countries which voluntarily seek such negotiations.

Mr Adam further explained that while involved in such negotiations his ministry tries its utmost to get as many benefits as possibly for all Seychellois. He gave as example the ongoing negotiations with the United Arab Emirates seeking visa exemption for all Seychellois travelling to this popular destination. With regard to these negotiations Mr Adam said he is confident of a very fruitful outcome in the near future.

He said such negotiations take time due to internal rules and procedures which exist in different countries but stressed the team in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has the competence to do the necessary discussions to the end.

Mr Adam also informed the Assembly that Seychelles has at present 86 honorary consuls in 62 countries around the world adding there are countries with more than one consuls due to their size  and also because of the economic importance of these countries.

Mr Adam said Seychelles benefits a lot from its consular network around the world. 
Answering a question relating to the number of Human Rights treaties Seychelles has signed and ratified, he said to date Seychelles has signed and ratified eight of the nine treaties under the United Nations Human Rights Convention.

More intensive and thorough studies are required before the most recent remaining treaty on the Protection of all Persons from Enforced Disappearance is signed and ratified. He noted though that his ministry is meanwhile working with other ministries and organisations both locally and internationally to ensure all reports related to those treaties already signed are properly updated and written and this is expected to be completed by next year.
Mr Adam also answered several other questions relating to his ministry.

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