Ambassador informed by NAI research
”Only one day is too short”, says Sofia Calltorp, Sweden’s ambassador to Zimbabwe, after attending NAI’s ambassador coaching program. “I would had loved to stay longer to explore the library’s resources”.
Sofia Calltorp didn’t have the time to visit NAI before beginning her duties in Harare this summer. Looking back, Calltorp is actually sure that was a good thing.
“The months l spent in Zimbabwe before coming for this training, gave me just the right entry-level knowledge. Had I been completely new at the office, l wouldn’t been able to contribute much to the discussions with the NAI-researchers. I will tell my ambassador colleagues to do likewise”, Calltorp says.
From next year, Sweden will be the only Nordic country to have an embassy in Harare. Sweden thus continues its commitment to Zimbabwe since the country’s independence in 1980.
“Sweden supports the people of Zimbabwe and not the government. That’s why the civil society is a crucial partner within the development cooperation”, Calltorp adds.
Other prioritized fields for Sweden are environmental issues. NAI researchers could inform Calltorp how Zimbabwean agriculture suffers from the effects of climate change.
“In addition, it was interesting to hear of recent research findings that show how the much criticized and contested land reform partly also had positive results in respect to farming in Zimbabwe”, Calltorp concludes.