Russia - Ghana relations/

CONGRATULATORY MESSAGE FROM THE REPRESENTATIVES OF THE GHANAIAN GOVERNMENT

Your Excellency, the Russian Ambassador to Ghana,
     Hon. Ministers of State,
     Hon. Members of Parliament,
     Your Excellencies, Members of Diplomatic Corps,
     Nananom, Niimei, Imamas,
     Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen,

It is my pleasant duty to respond to the toast proposed by H. E. Dr. Valery Orlov, the Ambassador of the Russian Federation to Ghana on this happy occasion of the National Day of the Russian Federation.

Indeed, Ghana values its ties with the Russian Federation, which have been strengthened in recent times by the visit to Ghana by the Russian Parliamentary and Business Delegation and the reciprocal visit to Moscow by a delegation of parliamentarians led by the Rt. Hon. Peter Ala Adjetey, Speaker of Parliament of the republic of Ghana. These visits have practically demonstrated the determination of the two countries to enhance their bilateral relations.

Excellencies,

As we celebrate this happy occasion, it is appropriate to express the gratitude of the Government and people of Ghana for the various forms of assistance Ghana has received from the Russian Government over the years in the field of agriculture, education, healthcare and more recently private sector development. May I take this opportunity to commend the Russian Government for the increase in the number of scholarships granted to Ghana from twenty (20) to thirty (30) for the 2004/2005 academic year.

We also commend the Russian Government for its decision to construct the new Embassy complex whish has began. This is a clear manifestation of its desire to deepen relations with Ghana and I wish to give the assurance that we would on our part endeavour to strengthen these relations.

At the sub-regional level, Ghana believes that real effort must be made to accelerate integration and cooperation in West Africa based on the basic values of democratic accountability, good governance, respect for human rights and rule of law. Development, however, in the region will not take place without peace, stability and security. Indeed, ECOWAS under the chairmanship of H.E. President John Agyekum Kufuor has recently in Liberia, La Cote d' Ivoire and Guinea Bissau demonstrated the seriousness of its commitment to the realization of the objectives of peace, stability and security in the West Africa region. We are confident that, Ghana could count on the support of the Russian Federation in its pursuit of these principles.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Let me conclude by reaffirming our abiding faith in the Russian Government for the continuous support in our endeavour to achieve sustainable development in a democratic environment. I am confident that succeeding anniversaries will further enchance and strengthen the bonds of friendship and cooperation that happily exist between our countries and peoples to our mutual advantage.

Your Excellencies, ladies and Gentlemen,

May I now invite you to join me in a toast to the continued good health of H.E. President Vladimir Putin and prosperity of the good people of the Russian Federation and continued friendship between our two countries.

Long live Ghana/Russian Federation friendship and cooperation.

Thank you.

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