“Cote d’Ivoire is a stable country in full economic development, dynamic, stable growth”
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“Cote d’Ivoire is a stable country in full economic development, dynamic, stable growth”
  • By Publisher Lee Kyung-sik
  • 승인 2022.08.31 16:56
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Says Ambassador Biti of Cote d’Ivoire in Seoul

By Publisher Lee Kyung-sik, Vice Chairman Song Na-ra, Editor Kevin Lee

Ambassador Allou Wanyou Eugène Biti of Cote d’Ivoire in Seoul said, “Under the leadership of the President of the Republic of Cote d’Ivoire H.E. M. Alassane Ouattara, Côte d'Ivoire is a stable country, in full economic development which is recording dynamic and stable growth among the strongest on the African continent and in the world, with an average increase of 8% annually since 2012.”
Then he said, “The 1st economy of the West African Economic Monetary Union (UEMOA), Côte d'Ivoire is the main economic lung of French-speaking West Africa and exercises a real influence in the region.”
Ambassador Biti of Cote d’Ivoire made the marks at a reception at the Lotte Hotel in Seoul on Aug. 4, 2022 in celebration of the 62nd anniversary of the country’s independence on August 7. (See excerpts from the text of speech toward the end of this article.)

 

Ambassador Allou Wanyou Eugène Biti of Cote d’Ivoire in Seoul speaks at the reception. He said, “Under the leadership of the President of the Republic of Cote d’Ivoire H.E. M. Alassane Ouattara, Côte d'Ivoire is a stable country, in full economic development which is recording dynamic and stable growth among the strongest on the African continent and in the world, with an average increase of 8% annually since 2012.”
Ambassador Allou Wanyou Eugène Biti of Cote d’Ivoire in Seoul speaks at the reception. He said, “Under the leadership of the President of the Republic of Cote d’Ivoire H.E. M. Alassane Ouattara, Côte d'Ivoire is a stable country, in full economic development which is recording dynamic and stable growth among the strongest on the African continent and in the world, with an average increase of 8% annually since 2012.”

Ambassador Bile’s speech was followed by a congratulatory speech by the representative of the Government of the Republic of Korea, Deputy Minister Choe Hyoung-chan of the Ministry Foreign Affairs for Planning and Coordination.
Choi said, “Côte d'Ivoire is the leading cacao producer, which means that a good part of the chocolate you eat, wherever you are, is the fruit of the labor of Ivorian farmers.”
Then he said, “Côte d'Ivoire is also the world's largest producer of cola nuts, which means that when you drink Coca Cola, you consume a good part of the cola nut of Côte d'Ivoire.” (See excerpts from his speech toward the end of this report.)
The reception was attended by many distinguished personalities from various segments of Korean society and the international community, especially the Seoul Diplomatic Corps.
Among the guests in attendance at the party were Mr. Filbert Kouassi Gleglaud and Mr. Saha Michel, respectively, director general of Bilateral Relations, and director of Asia, Pacific and Oceania, and President Lyeo Woon-ki of the Korea-Africa Foundation, and representatives from various segments of Korean society, including the mass communications media.
Cote d’Ivoire, according to the Korean Ministry of Foreign Affairs, is a fast-growing country located in the center of West Africa with a population of 26 million and about 1.4 times the size of the Korean Peninsula.
Côte d'Ivoire may be a geographically distant country but in heart is a very close country to Korea. She is the first country in the African continent with whom Korea established diplomatic relations in 1967.

 

Deputy Minister Choe Hyoung-chan of the Ministry Foreign Affairs for Planning and Coordination makes a congratulatory speech on the occasion of the National Day of Cote d’Ivoire.
Deputy Minister Choe Hyoung-chan of the Ministry Foreign Affairs for Planning and Coordination makes a congratulatory speech on the occasion of the National Day of Cote d’Ivoire.

Excerpts from the speech of Ambassador Bile:
Mr. CHOE Hyoung-Chan, Deputy-Minister in Charge of Planning and Coordination, representing the Minister of Foreign Affairs,
Their Excellencies:
Mr. Filbert Kouassi Gleglau and Mr. Saha Michel, respectively Director General of Bilateral Relations, and Director of Asia, Pacific and Oceania, of the Ministry of State, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, African Integration and the Diaspora of Côte d'Ivoire, Mr. Lyeo Woon-ki, President of the Korea-Africa Foundation, Excellencies Ambassadors, dear colleagues, Business Leaders and their representatives,
Fellow citizens, Honorable guests, Ladies and gentlemen,
The Republic of Côte d'Ivoire, which I have the great honor to represent today in the Republic of Korea, celebrates its sixty-two years of existence. This ceremony, which should take place on August 07th, is being held today for convenience, in order to bring together all the people who love and appreciate this Nation which is dear to us.
First of all, allow me to give you a brief presentation of this beautiful country on the African continent that is the Republic of Côte d'Ivoire.
Located in West Africa, the area of Côte d'Ivoire is 322,462 km2, for a population of approximately 27,000,000 inhabitants. Its economic capital is Abidjan and the political capital Yamoussoukro.
Under the leadership of the President of the Republic, H.E. M. Alassane OUATTARA, Côte d'Ivoire is a stable country, in full economic development which is recording dynamic and stable growth among the strongest on the African continent and in the world, with an average increase of 8% annually since 2012.

 

Ambassador Biti of Cote d’Ivoire in Seoul and Deputy Minister Choe Hyoung-chan of the Ministry Foreign Affairs for Planning and Coordination (6th and 2nd from left, respectively) poses with other important guests from Korean society and the international community, including many ambassadors.
Ambassador Biti of Cote d’Ivoire in Seoul and Deputy Minister Choe Hyoung-chan of the Ministry Foreign Affairs for Planning and Coordination (6th and 2nd from left, respectively) poses with other important guests from Korean society and the international community, including many ambassadors.

1st economy of the West African Economic Monetary Union (UEMOA), Côte d'Ivoire is the main economic lung of French-speaking West Africa and exercises a real influence in the region.

The Ivorian economy, based 50% on agriculture achieves the following performances:
Worldwide, Côte d'Ivoire is the leading cacao producer, which means that a good part of the chocolate you eat, wherever you are, is the fruit of the labor of Ivorian farmers. Côte d'Ivoire is also the world's largest producer of cola nuts, which means that when you drink Coca cola, you consume a good part of the cola nut of Côte d'Ivoire. My country is also the leading producer of raw cashew nuts.
At the African level, Côte d'Ivoire is the 1st producer of latex and bananas, the 2nd cotton producer and the 3rd producer of palm oil and coffee. Today, Côte d'Ivoire is the 2nd competitive economy in West Africa.
With regard to mineral resources, they have long been sidelined in the process of economic development in Côte d'Ivoire. However, the Ivorian subsoil is rich and contains many mineral riches, such as gold, iron, diamonds, bauxite, nickel, manganese, which represent potential sources of income capable of infusing strong economic growth, but their contribution to the national economy to date is limited to 8% of gross domestic product.
Regarding energy resources, Côte d'Ivoire has oil and natural gas. My country entered the oil era in 1980, but it took until 2002 to start exploiting this resource, whose crude oil, of a quality close to that of Brent from the North Sea, is export object. The discovery of a new oil field will allow Côte d'Ivoire to produce around 105,000 barrels of oil per day.
Today, oil production still only contributes 4% to GDP and crude oil exports represent only 15% of the country's total exports.
As for gas, national production at the end of March 2019 was 216 million cubic feet per day. It is used exclusively to supply the country's thermal power stations, which represent 80% of Ivorian electricity production. The Government has invested in the construction of a floating liquefied natural gas regasification terminal, with a capacity of 100 million cubic feet in the port of Abidjan, to supplement the offshore production of natural gas.
In the tourist field, Côte d'Ivoire is endowed with seaside resorts, tropical forests and a rich cultural heritage. In this respect, several sites have been admitted to the cultural heritage of UNESCO, namely the historic town of Grand-Bassam, the first capital of the country, the national park of Taï and that of Comoé, for the pleasure of people who like hiking and pure nature, as well as the Mount Nimba Strict Nature Reserve. North of the city of Abidjan is the Banco National Park, which is a rainforest reserve through which hiking trails wind.

 

Ambasssador Ambassador Biti of Cote d’Ivoire (fourth from left) poses with Publisher-Chairman Lee Kyung-sik of The Korea Post (third from left), Vice Chairman Song Na-ra (far right), Managing Editor Kevin Lee (far left) and Korean-language Editor Lind Youn (second from left).
Ambasssador Ambassador Biti of Cote d’Ivoire (fourth from left) poses with Publisher-Chairman Lee Kyung-sik of The Korea Post (third from left), Vice Chairman Song Na-ra (far right), Managing Editor Kevin Lee (far left) and Korean-language Editor Lind Youn (second from left).

Ladies and gentlemen,
All these resources remain little or not really exploited. This is why the Ivorian Government has undertaken reforms, in order to better exploit the potential of this beautiful country that is Côte d'Ivoire.
Thus, in agricultural matters, the Ivorian authorities have undertaken not only to organize the producers and train them, with a view to increasing their production, but also and above all to carry out the local semi-processing of these products, to improve the peasant income.
To this end, industrialization appears to be the appropriate solution. To do this, the Ivorian legislator adopted a new investment code, favorable to the creation of companies, with tax facilities in particular granted to investors who are interested in Côte d'Ivoire.
In such a context, the contribution of external partners is necessarily welcome.
Ladies and gentlemen,
Industrialization rhymes with energy, electricity, and infrastructure. To cope with this, the Ivorian Government has increased its electricity production, to such an extent that Côte d'Ivoire delivers electricity to several neighboring countries.
Under the management of His Excellency Mr. Alassane OUATTARA, a brilliant world-renowned economist, previously Deputy Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Côte d'Ivoire has one of the most efficient road networks in the West African sub-region, with a port equipped to international standards, which is also the leading tuna port in sub-Saharan Africa.
With regard to mining resources, in order to increase their contribution to the State budget, the Ivorian Government has adopted a mining code, in order to better organize the sector and secure the assets of mining operators.
Ladies and gentlemen,
As you can see, efforts are being made by my country to boost its economy and create a place in the concert of Nations.
This is the main reason why Côte d'Ivoire has set itself the credo of being the friend of all and the enemy of no one. First African country to have established diplomatic relations with the Republic of Korea on July 23rd, 1961, the Republic of Côte d'Ivoire, which had recently gained full political sovereignty, had already believed in cooperation with the country of the morning calm.
Admittedly, this cooperation has stalled, due to certain factors such as remoteness and language, but the development of technology and the firm will of the leaders of these two countries to strengthen their ties has enabled for a certain period of taking strong actions, the culmination of which was the State visit of His Excellency Mr. Alassane OUATTARA, President of the Republic of Côte d'Ivoire to the Republic of Korea, from October 6 to 9th, 2014, sanctioned by the signing of several agreements.
Ladies and gentlemen,
I remain convinced that the ratification, on June 10th, 2022, of the Framework Agreement for cooperation in the field of development assistance between the Republic of Côte d'Ivoire and the Republic of Korea will boost the relationship between our two countries, in framework of mutually beneficial cooperation.
In this regard, the Embassy has initiated meetings with some Korean businessmen, in order to conduct an economic prospecting mission in Côte d'Ivoire, probably during the month of October.
At this stage of my remarks, allow me to affirm that Côte d'Ivoire remains open to any collaboration with any State, to fit with the qualifier of hospitable country which has always been attributed to it, with regard to its openness to the outside world and the diversity of its population.
Thank you.

 

Ambassador Biti of Cote d’Ivoire and Deputy Minister Choe Hyoung-chan of the Ministry Foreign Affairs (behind cake) cut the celebration cake with other dignitaries attending the reception.
Ambassador Biti of Cote d’Ivoire and Deputy Minister Choe Hyoung-chan of the Ministry Foreign Affairs (behind cake) cut the celebration cake with other dignitaries attending the reception.

Excerpts from the speech of Deputy Minister Choi Hyoung-chan:
Ambassador Allou Wanyou Eugene Biti, Ambassador Filbert Kouassi Gleglaud, Ambassador Saha Michel, Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen,Bonsoir! Good evening!
Let me first express my sincere gratitude to Ambassador Biti for hosting this meaningful event.
I am delighted to join you in person in commemorating both the Independence Day of Côte d'Ivoire and the 61st anniversary of our diplomatic relations.
On behalf of the Government of the Republic of Korea, I extend my best wishes and congratulations to the people and the government of Côte d'Ivoire. 
Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen,
As many of us know that Côte d’Ivoire is the oldest friend of Korea in Africa; in fact, our friendship traces back to July 1961. Our two countries have many common grounds.
Both countries suffered from colonialism and the pain of civil wars. But ardent aspiration of the people and strong will of the governments in the pursuit of a better future for all citizens enabled remarkable economic and political development in our two countries.
Based on these shared traits, Korea and Côte d'Ivoire have continued to deepen collaboration in a wide range of fields since 1961.
The mutual establishment of key institutions in both countries demonstrates our close relations.
In Côte d'Ivoire, we opened the Embassy of the Republic of Korea (1996), and the KOTRA (2006, reopen) and KOICA offices (2014). In Korea, the Embassy of the Republic of Côte d'Ivoire was opened in 1997.
In addition, we continued high-level exchanges despite the COVID-19 pandemic. H.E. Mr. Zoro Ballo, Minister of Promotion of the Good Governance and Fight against Corruption visited Korea last year.
And, just yesterday the 4th Korea-Côte d'Ivoire Policy Consultations was held in Seoul. It was a timely opportunity to examine pending issues between the two countries following up on the discussions made during President Ouattara’s visit to Korea in 2014. Cultural and educational cooperation are also expanding.
The Korean-Ivorian Sports, Culture, and ICT Ouattara Centre was launched last year with attendance of President Ouattara and other dignitaries of Côte d’Ivoire.
It is our sincere hope that the Center will play a key role in deepening collaboration, particularly people to people exchanges between Koreans and Ivorians. On the academic front, the Felix Houphouet-Boigny University is running a master’s program in Korean Studies for many years. In addition, the annual Korean film festival and the Taekwondo competition in Abidjan are gaining popularity among Ivorians.
Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen,
The world is facing a number of transnational challenges. Public health crises and climate change are good examples. In addressing such challenges, we are eager to work together with Côte d'Ivoire to transform the various crises into opportunities.
KOICA’s water supply network project in Abidjan, is expected to secure direct access to clean water for more than 20,000 households in Abidjan.
This is a welcome project especially when the threat of climate change threatens access to water.
In addition, the National Cancer Centre, funded by the EDCF, is expected to be the largest cancer hospital upon completion not just in Côte d’Ivoire but in Africa as a whole. As cancer is an emerging chronic health problem in Africa, it is our sincere hope that the center will contribute to improving cancer care service as well as oncology infrastructure in Africa.

 

Celebration ice work at the reception venue attracted a lot of attention from the guests for the unique ice work.
Celebration ice work at the reception venue attracted a lot of attention from the guests for the unique ice work.

With continuation of such cooperation in various areas that directly impact people’s lives, we believe that the momentum for future cooperation between our two countries will grow even more.
Korea values its longstanding partnership with Côte d'Ivoire and continues to stand as a steadfast partner committed to our shared goal of prosperous and peaceful Côte d'Ivoire.
In fact, there is a great opportunity for Korea to share its development experience with our African friends including Côte d'Ivoire in the near future.
As many of you are well aware, the Korean government submitted Busan’s candidature for the World Expo 2030 a year ago.

Busan is a perfect example of modern Korea’s rise from the ashes. From the only major city left in the early days of the Korean War, flooded with millions of internally displaced Koreans, to the seventh largest shipping hub in the world today. Busan is ready to share Korea’s experience with our African friends including Côte d'Ivoire through the Busan World Expo 2030.
Together, we can build a brighter, and more prosperous future for Ivorians and Koreans alike. We salute your efforts to strengthen democracy, encourage economic growth, and promote peace in west Africa and beyond.
Once again, I express my heartfelt thanks to Ambassador Biti and the Embassy of Côte d'Ivoire in Seoul for your endeavors to further strengthen the bonds between our two countries.
I look forward to the continued deepening of longstanding friendship between our two countries.
Merci Beaucoup! Thank you!


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