Remarks Following Credential Ceremony

It was a pleasure to present my credentials to President Rajaonarimampianina today.

My appointment, as the first ambassador to Madagascar to be named in five years, is a symbol of the restored bond between our two countries, and I look forward to engaging with the President, the government, and Malagasy people, to help Madagascar realize its enormous promise.

Today’s conversation was just the very beginning of what promises to be a productive and constructive dialogue between our two countries.

Among the topics we discussed, the President and I talked about our shared belief in the need for reconciliation, as the key to economic prosperity and political stability.  I told him the United States welcomed the efforts by the government and civil society to establish an inclusive dialogue to help Madagascar again move forward.

We also talked about the challenges Madagascar faces, and where the United States might be able to assist.  Madagascar is a country rich in biodiversity, and it is in all of our interests to help preserve it.  We also mentioned the need for institution-building and good governance, and the importance of restored AGOA eligibility for the country.

Lastly, I pledged that we would work closely with the government to ensure that positive progress in such areas as human rights and combatting corruption continue on a positive trajectory.

The United States is proud to be a partner to Madagascar, and I very much look forward to my next few years here.

Thank you.