A Cuban government delegation has called on the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Mr Charles Owiredu, to dialogue on how to strengthen bilateral relations between the two countries.
The closed door meeting also served as a platform for the two countries to explore new areas of mutually beneficial cooperation, in furtherance of the political and economic ties between the two countries.
At a brief engagement between the two that preceded the meeting in Accra yesterday, the leader of the Cuban delegation, the Deputy Minister of Public Health, Dr Marcia Cobas Ruiz, said the delegation was in Ghana to discuss existing bilateral agreements with Ghana and how to enhance them as part of boosting bilateral relations between the two countries.
Dr Ruiz said Cuba would continue to support Ghana in the areas of health and education, which had been the traditional areas of cooperation between the two for about 60 years.
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She said through its Medical Brigade agreement with Ghana, renewed every year for many years now, Cuba deployed medical doctors to Ghana, most of whom served in rural and under-served parts of the country, to enhance healthcare delivery.
Highlighting how far the bonds between the two countries had travelled, Dr Ruiz said Ghana became the first African country to recognise the Cuban Revolution in 1959, and proceeded to exchange diplomatic missions in Accra and Havana and the two countries had since maintained an interrupted special relationship.
The Ambassador of Cuba to Ghana, Mr Pedro Luis Despaigne Gonzalez, who was part of the delegation, said: “We are also seeking to explore more bilateral cooperation opportunities that would enhance our bilateral relations that date back 60 years.”
For his part, Mr Owiredu expressed Ghana’s appreciation to Cuba for its tremendous support over the years, particularly in the health and education sectors.
“The Medical Brigade agreement has been of tremendous support to healthcare delivery in Ghana, which is helping to improve access to quality healthcare services across the country by serving rural and under-served communities. We are so grateful to you for this gesture,” he said.
Mr Owiredu stated that about 3,000 Ghanaians had over the years benefited from scholarships from the Cuban government to study in that country.
He assured the delegation that Ghana would do all it could to keep and enhance the bilateral relations between the two countries and facilitate exploration of further areas of cooperation.