In Ethiopia, Lula discusses increased trade, food security and participates in African Union Summit

President continues agenda on the African continent after visiting Egypt

Translated by: Ana Paula Rocha

Brasil de Fato | Rio de Janeiro |
Lula was received by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, Taye Atsekeselass - Ricardo Stuckert

President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva (Workers’ Party) arrived in the Ethiopian capital, Adis Adeba, where he will hold bilateral meetings this Friday (16) with Ethiopia’s Prime Minister, Abiy Ahmed. His schedule also includes Lula’s participation in the 37th Summit of Heads of State and Government of the African Union, which happens between Saturday and Sunday (February 17 and 18) in Adis Adeba. 

Lula traveled to Ethiopia on Thursday (15) from Cairo, Egypt’s capital, where he visited the country’s president, Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi. Egypt and Ethiopia are two of the five countries that became members of BRICS this year. 

Lula and Ahmed may discuss topics such as cooperation for development and trade promotion. In 2023, trade between the countries amounted to US$23.8 million, and the government believes there is "huge potential for growth in flows". The rapprochement was expanded in December last year when a Brazilian business delegation visited the country.

Lula's agenda in the Ethiopian capital also includes his participation in the event "Climate finance for agriculture and food security: implementation of the Nairobi Declaration and results of COP28", to be held on Friday. The aforementioned declaration is the basis for a common position by African countries on promoting the sustainable use of natural resources.

African Union Summit 

The Brazilian president is a guest – one of the few heads of state from outside Africa – attending the African Union Summit, which happens on Saturday and Sunday. The government intends to schedule bilateral meetings with heads of state from some of the countries that will be represented at the event. However, there is no confirmation yet as to which ones. One of the aims is to guarantee support from African countries for the Global Alliance against Hunger and Poverty.

:: Lula arrives in Egypt to discuss war, climate crisis and cooperation agreements ::

This year, the African Union will become a full member of the G20. Its entry was confirmed at the group's last meeting (in India, 2024), and was supported by Brazil. In addition to Lula and the leaders of the continent's countries, the event is expected to include the President of the Palestinian Authority, Mahmoud Abbas, and the Secretary General of the United Nations, António Guterres.

Speech in the Arab League

In one of his last appointments before going to Ethiopia, Lula spoke at an extraordinary session of the League of Arab States on Thursday. At the meeting, he once again defended recognizing the autonomy of the Palestinian people and the country's territory in order to guarantee a dignified future for the local population.

"Brazil's position is clear. There will be no peace until there is a Palestinian state, within mutually agreed and internationally recognized borders, which include the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, with East Jerusalem as its capital. The decision on the existence of an independent Palestinian state was taken 75 years ago by the United Nations. There are no excuses for preventing Palestine from joining the UN as a full member. The resumption of peace negotiations is a universal cause. And it is our cause," said Lula.

Edited by: Rodrigo Durão Coelho