This is the first visit by a Croatian high official to that country since the establishment of bilateral relations 20 years ago, and also a reciprocal visit as Colombian Foreign Minister María Ángela Holguín Cuéllar paid a visit to Croatia last year, during which she also visited DOK-ING. The Croatian delegation also included a member of the Alan Agency and representatives of the Croatian Mine Action Centre (CROMAC).
“We have already set up good relations with Colombia in various areas, given that we presented some of our companies to the Colombian FM during her visit, notably those producing machines for dangerous environments, including demining, under the banner of “don’t send a person where you can send a machine”, and DOK-ING has since already sold five of its machines, Pusić said ahead of the visit. She also plans to discuss further cooperation and, given Colombia’s longstanding conflict between the state and the guerrillas, transferring Croatia’s experiences in reintegration of former combatants. Pusić added that Colombia was one of our partners with which we were developing a wide and complex cooperation, combining military, economic, political and developmental aspects.
Apart from meeting with her host FM Holguín Cuéllar, Pusić also will hold talks with Defence Minister Juan Carlos Pinzón Bueno and Senator and Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee Jimmy Chamorro. Also scheduled is the signing of an agreement on cooperation in anti-mine action and humanitarian demining. Croatia has been present in Colombia since 2009, participating in humanitarian demining projects under the auspices of MFEA.
Representatives of CROMAC are directly involved in the implementation of said projects, and the agreement will solidify Croatia’s presence in that sector, which opens the door for other bilateral development projects.
CROMAC’s activities in Colombia and cooperation with the Ministry of Defence are responsible for placing DOK-ING’s mine clearance machines on the Colombian market, which is a good example of using development cooperation systems to promote economy. The Šestan-Busch company also has an official representative in Bogota.(MVEP)