Nandi-Ndaitwah welcomes Russian deputy PM amid declining trade

THEY MEET … Minister of international relations and cooperation Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah and deputy prime minister of the Russian Federation Yury Trutnev. Photo: Kelvin Chiringa

Minister of international relations and cooperation Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah on Friday urged her visiting counterpart, the deputy prime minister of the Russian Federation, Yury Trutnev, to resort to peaceful negotiations to resolve the war in Ukraine.

Trutnev arrived in the country against the backdrop of declining trade between both nations, a concern Nandi-Ndaitwah emphasises must be addressed.

“We believe the Security Council should play its role in ensuring peaceful resolution of disputes wherever they arise,” she said.

“We understand that negotiations and diplomacy are the way forward and should be encouraged. The same applies to the unfortunate situation in Gaza. As an international community, we have a responsibility to protect the rights of the people,” she said.

Trutnev pledged to enhance trade and bilateral relations with Namibia.

He congratulated Nandi-Ndaitwah on her re-election to the position of vice president of Swapo.

“We should intensify our contacts now. I assure you that despite any disruptions in our contacts, the Russian Federation values the friendship that underlies our cooperation,” Trutnev said.

“Swapo represents the interests of the majority of the population in the region, and as a political force, it deserves respect, not only in Namibia, but also in Russia and other countries worldwide,” he said.

Meanwhile, Nandi-Ndaitwah expressed concern over the decline in wheat exports from Russia, stating that she would engage the private sector on the matter.

“There has been a decline in our trade, but we are confident it’s time for it to pick up. As a government, we have observed a decrease in wheat imports from the Russian Federation by the Namibian private sector, who are the main players. I am sure we will address this matter seriously,” she said.

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