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The diaspora is an important element of the identity of Cabo Verde

Updated: Apr 10

Meeting with Cabo Verde's President, Prime Minister and Ministers

Cabo Verde's Prime Minister Ulisses Correia e Silva
Cabo Verde's Prime Minister Ulisses Correia e Silva

On my recent visit to Cabo Verde between 25 and 31 of March I had the chance to meet several high-level authorities with the aim to unleash Cabo Verde's potential and strengthen the ties between the country and the diaspora in Europe and beyond.

There are approximately 1,5 million Cape-Verdeans in the diaspora worldwide, and around 40.000 in Luxembourg, nationals or descendants, and they contribute to the 34% of country's PIB through direct and indirect investments. The authorities agree on the need to connect the diaspora as much as possible with their home country as it is economic and human capital and CV needs skilled workforce to continue developing the country.

Prime Minister Ulisses Correia e Silva highlighted that Luxembourg very important partner for the country and that he works in close cooperation with the EU.

On facilitating the mobility of the Cape-Verdean diaspora, he encourages competition between the different airlines to lower the prices of tickets, and promoting the ⁠exemption of custom tariffs for NGOs sending goods to Europe. The government is also developing a platform to inform on administrative processes like investments and solutions for the diaspora.

The diaspora is a human resource for Cabo Verde. For example, Cabo Verde beat Nigeria in an African Cup of Nations thanks to diaspora players, because Cape-Verdean talent is not only in Cabo Verde.

The meeting with Cabo Verde's President José Maria Neves was an opportunity for the Head of State and me to address relevant issues of bilateral relations between Cabo Verde and Luxembourg and the Partnership with the European Union, with a view to strengthening cooperation perspectives.

The importance and role that the Cape-Verdean diaspora has played in host countries and in the development of the islands was another strong point on the agenda, and I expressed my desire to work towards empowerment and strengthening the participation of our communities emigrants, both in the European context and in the country.

The diaspora guarantees the development of the country where they live, and of the country of origin. Another example is that he diaspora is eligible to vote to up to 6 Members of the Cape-Verdean Parliament.

Cabo Verde's President José Maria Neves
Cabo Verde's President José Maria Neves

I also had the pleasure to meet the Minister of Communities Jorge Santos, who plays an important role in relation with the Cape-Verdean diaspora. During the meeting, he explained the different projects they have, like a Mapping of the Cape Verdean Diaspora, the National Program for the promotion of Cape Verdean Investment, and the "Portal das Comunidades" digital platform, with administration and information purposes.

Minister of Communities Jorge Santos showing a painting by Cape-Verdean artist and Luxembourg resident Neelson Neves.
Minister of Communities Santos showing a painting by Cape-Verdean artist and Luxembourg resident Nelson Neves.

Cabo Verde needs its diaspora as much as the diaspora needs Cabo Verde and I want to see this link strengthened in the future.

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