Remarks of Ambassador Yamate on the Occasion of the 15th Anniversary of ESSVA

His Excellency Mister Prime Minister,
Her Excellency Madam Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research,
His Excellency Mister Minister of Public Health,
His Excellency Mister Minister of Transport, Tourism and Meteorology,
Ladies and Gentlemen, members of the Diplomatic Corps,
Mr. Chief of the Vakinankaratra Region,
Mr. President of the Special Delegation, Antsirabe I,
Mr. the representative of the partners,
Ladies and Gentlemen officials from ESSVA,
Honorable guests,
Ladies and Gentlemen

It is truly an honor for me to be with you here today to celebrate this important anniversary.  Not only is this my first visit to ESSVA, but it is also my first visit in many years to Antsirabe, and what a pleasure it is to be back.

ESSVA and the United States share similar aspirations for Madagascar’s future, which is why it was important for me to come and show my support today.  This country has vast potential, and ESSVA’s priorities – promoting responsible tourism and other forms of economic development, educating the journalists of tomorrow, promoting the learning of other languages and teaching educators – these are all important, critical factors in the development of Madagascar, and are priorities that we share.

We value our partnerships with educational institutions like ESSVA.  Like ESSVA, we believe in investing in the future.  Indeed, just this week we held an orientation program at the Embassy for the 2015 Mandela Fellows, a program developed by President Obama to promote young African leaders in fields such as public policy, entrepreneurship, and development.  I would encourage you to think about applying for one of these positions in the coming years.  The program does not just bring young leaders to the United States to meet with the president, but seeks to build a cadre of talented, dynamic leaders who can develop new approaches to regional challenges and help their countries and their region develop their full potentials.

In closing, I want to extend my deepest appreciation to the leadership, past and present, of ESSVA, for what they have achieved and for including me in this event today.  We share your goals and aspirations for Madagascar, and look forward to continuing our cooperation with you for another 15 years and beyond!

Thank you.