IVORY COAST – Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias’ swing through three West African countries took him to the African Development Bank in Ivory Coast to learn about how it tries to reduce poverty and improve living conditions.
Greece is trying to expand its foreign policy to include Africa to counter Turkey, after Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu also recently visited five African countries, his country now reaping big trade benefits.
Dendias was the first Greek foreign minister to visit the Ivory Coast, where he planned to meet its foreign chief Kandia Camara and President Alassane Dramane Ouattar, as well as bank officials and the Interregional Maritime Security Institute (ISMI) in the capital Abidjan.
The tour included stops in Ghana and Gabon to meet leading officials of both countries, Dendias having gone to sub-Saharan Africa five times before, and his fourth trip to West Africa, noted Greece’s state-run Athens-Macedonia News Agency ANA-MPA.
Simon Mizrahi, African Development Bank Acting Vice President for Technology and Corporate Services, welcomed the Greek delegation on behalf of the Bank’s President, said a statement from the institution.
He talked about its programs and reach and partners including Agence Française de Séveloppement, the World Bank and the European Union and explained how it operates in the region.
The Greek delegation was composed of Ambassador Ioannis Tsaousis, the head of Dendias’ cabinet, Efthymios-Georges Costopoulos, the Greek Ambassador to Senegal and Special Envoy of the Minister of Foreign Affairs for the Sahel region, and Ioannis Ferentinos, First Counselor and Deputy Spokesperson of the Greek Ministry of Foreign Affairs.