Ghana and Suriname have signed four agreements to deepen cooperation, including one that grants holders of diplomatic and service passports, visa exemptions.
The other agreements are the establishment of a political consultations mechanism between the ministries of foreign affairs of the two countries.
The two countries also settled on a roadmap for a programme for cooperation that would linger on from this year to 2023, in addition to a letter of intent for collaboration in the field of diplomacy and international relations.
Ghana’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Ms Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey and her counterpart, Yldiz Pollack-Beighle, signed the agreements on behalf of their countries, in Accra yesterday.
Ms Botchwey described the agreements as an indication of the commitment of both countries to transform their long-standing relations, which dated back to 1970, into real projects for their shared benefits.
She expressed Ghana’s support for areas of collaboration between the two countries, such as trade, investment, agriculture, agro-processing, mining and tourism .
To make the relations more robust, Ms Botchwey said the establishment of a Ghana-Suriname Permanent Joint Commission for Cooperation and trade-related instruments was imperative.
A trade-related instrument such as an agreement on the avoidance of double taxation and a bilateral investment treaty, she said, would guarantee investment for both economies.
Ms Botchwey said the education and tourism sectors presented potentials for the two countries to exchange ideas and best practices, to enhance job-creation for the youth.
The minister, who is also Member of Parliament for Anyaa-Sowutuom in the Greater Accra Region, indicated the need for the relations to be enhanced.
Ms Pollack-Beighle said the agreements would not only enhance relations, but help create a better future for generations unborn through the mutual development of their countries.
She observed that there were more areas to be covered by Ghana and Suriname, and implored both countries to commit themselves to the agreements.
Her country, Ms Pollack-Beighle said, was determined to honour its obligation in the agreements, and lauded the idea of the establishment of the joint commission for cooperation.
BY JONATHAN DONKOR