AAGC & African Agenda 2063: Synergies and Opportunities

AAGC & African Agenda 2063: Synergies and Opportunities


The Asia-Africa Growth Corridor has to be framed in the broader context of the African Agenda 2063. The agenda identifies seven key aspirations that are to be achieved over the next 50 years. The period is divided into 10-year implementation plans which allow for prioritization and easier monitoring of progress.

The first aspiration of the Agenda 2063 is a prosperous Africa based on inclusive growth and sustainable development. Here we are not only talking about living standards, health and well-being, but also about well-educated citizens, about creating economies that are structurally transformed to create shared growth, looking at modern agriculture and taking advantage of Africa’s unique natural endowments.

Curtain falls on Mugabe’s rule: Rejoicing & concern


Zimbabwe’s long-awaited moment of celebration has finally arrived with the 93-year-old strongman Robert Mugabe announcing his resignation after a reign of 37 years. On November 21 his letter, wherein he expressed his decision to step down from power to allow a peaceful leadership change, was read out by the speaker of the Zimbabwean parliament, Jacob Mudenda. With his announcement, Mr Mugabe has saved himself from the ordeal of an impeachment hearing that had been initiated against him.

India-East Africa conclave: Mapping new pathways for shared prosperity


Against the backdrop of the unfolding resurgence of India and East Africa, the fastest growing region in a rising African continent, Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni has called for pitching the burgeoning economic partnership onto a higher orbit.
India’s Commerce Secretary Rita Teaotia underscored the striking convergence between the two regions and spoke about an “alignment between the India Growth Story and Africa’s own vision of resurgence, as crystallised in African Agenda 2063.”
Mrs Teaotia is leading a high-profile delegation of top Indian industrialists, investors and senior officials, to the CII-EXIM Bank Regional Conclave on India and East Africa in Kamala.
Setting an upbeat note about the future of India’s economic relations with Uganda and East Africa, Mr Museveni exhorted Indian investors to take advantage of the improving investment environment in the country. “The potential is very big. Purchasing power in Africa is going up. Africa is the business centre of the future. You are right now in the right place at the right time,” Mr Museveni told delegates at the CII-Exim Bank Regional Conclave on “India and East Africa: Partners in Development.”
Sanjay Kirloskar, Chairman, CII Africa Committee, and CMD, Kirloskar Brothers Limited, dwelled on focus areas of the India-East Africa partnership, which includes infrastructure, banking & finance, manufacturing, agriculture and food processing and knowledge sectors like IT & telecom, health care, education & skill development.
As India gears up to intensify trade and investment with the dynamic East African region, promoting Brand India in the region will be crucial. Brand India is synonymous with Trust, Quality and Innovation, said Mr Kirloskar.

CII-EXIM Bank conclave in Kampala: India eyes East Africa opportunity


India is set to accelerate its economic engagement with East Africa, the fastest growing region in the African continent and home to a large Indian diaspora, at a regional business conclave in Kampala.
The two-day India-East Africa business conclave, organised by Confederation of Indian Industries (CII) and EXIM Bank, will be inaugurated by Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni in the Ugandan capital on November 20. India’s Commerce Secretary Rita Teotia is leading the high-profile Indian delegation, which includes top investors in Africa like Shobana Kamineni, president, CII and Sanjay Kirloskar, CMD, Kirloskar Brothers Limited. Many ministers from East African countries will be participating in the conclave.

Unrest and Uncertainty in Zimbabwe: What Will the Country’s Military Do Next?


Zimbabwe’s long-time President Robert Mugabe has been put under house arrest as the country’s military continues negotiations to find a new leader. Earlier, the army took control over government offices and the state broadcaster, saying it was targeting “criminals” around the president.The army’s move which began Tuesday with tanks entering the outskirts of Harare raised speculations about a military coup. The leader of Zimbabwe’s War Veterans Association told ITV News that the military had removed Mugabe who has been ruling the country for 37 years.

Global outrage at Somalia terror attack


The horrific truck bomb blast in Somalia’s capital Mogadishu has sent shock waves across the nation and elicited condemnation from across the world. The death⋅⋅⋅

With OBOR on mind, India brands Asia-Africa Growth Corridor: People-centric & consultative


Touted as an alternative and counterpoint to China’s One Belt, One Road project, the Asia-Africa Growth Corridor (AAGC) is set to be accelerated in days to come, with India signalling its intention to fast-track this transformational connective project that will encompass the two emerging growth poles in the world.

“Racist” spin to attacks on Nigerians: Will it impact India-Africa ties?


India’s burgeoning ties with Africa have come under strain with New Delhi-based African envoys calling for an international inquiry into recent brutal attacks on Nigerian students in a satellite town of the Indian capital. What is disturbing for India is that these attacks, which were the handiwork of some criminals and malcontents, have been described as “racist” and “xenophobic” by the African envoys, indicating that these were expressions of ingrained racist prejudice and hatred.
What was galling for India’s foreign office was that the Dean of African Diplomatic Corps, who issued the blistering statement on the attacks on behalf of other envoys, also alleged that “no sufficient and visible deterrent action” was taken against the perpetrators.”
In a strongly-worded statement, the Dean of African Heads of Mission said that the attacks were “xenophobic and racial” and that Indian authorities had failed to “sufficiently condemn” the attacks or take “visible deterring measures”.
Sadly, these attacks on Africans have come at a time when India is looking to scale up its engagement with Africa across the spectrum. The last three years have seen a marked upswing in India-Africa relations, with India hosting the largest summit with the continent by inviting leaders and representatives of all 54 African countries to the third summit in New Delhi in October 2015. This period has also seen a record number of high-level visits to African countries from India, with the prime minister, president and vice-president visiting over 15 African countries. India-Africa trade has surpassed $70 billion, with more Indian companies looking to invest in the African opportunity.
But, unfortunately, as these attacks on African nationals show, this visible across-the-board acceleration in India-Africa engagement has not translated into an appreciation and understanding of African culture, which has bred distorting stereotypes. Taking a long-range view, it’s necessary for both sides to invest more resources in sensitisation and building mutual popular goodwill if one wants to change the narrative of India-Africa relations on the ground.

India’s Africa safari: Why Vice-President Ansari is going to Nigeria, Mali

Tunisia: Vice President Hamid Ansari at Tunisian Institute for Strategic Studies in Tunisia on Friday. PTI Photo by R Senthil Kumar (PTI6_3_2016_000246A)

Nigeria’s India-educated President Muahammadu Buhari is an incorrigible optimist. He is not deterred by narratives of Afro-pessimism or Africa Rising?, sparked by plunging commodity prices and festering violence in swathes of the continent, but is determined to ensure that the rising of Nigeria is real and lasting. A few hundred kilometres away, Mali, ravaged by savage terrorism, is trying to script its own resurgence amid formidable challenges. Against this backdrop, Vice-President Hamid Ansari heads to Nigeria and Mali to chart new pathways of cooperation to aid ongoing national reconstruction in these two important partners of India in West Africa.
Mr Ansari’s visits to Nigeria and Mali (September 26-30) underscore India’s strategic design to expand its footprints in the West Africa region, which had not hitherto loomed high on India’s diplomatic canvas.
Besides enhancing economic ties and development cooperation, the vice-president is expected to focus on imparting a strategic traction to India’s relations with Nigeria and Mali. Intensifying counter-terror cooperation will be on top of the agenda in both Abuja and Bamako.
The vice-president will also be seeking support of Nigeria and Mali, members of the Organisation of Islamic Conference (OIC), which forms the diplomatic support base of Pakistan on the Kashmir issue, for India’s campaign to isolate Pakistan in the wake of the terror attack in north Kashmir that killed 18 Indian soldiers.
China’s growing economic presence in West Africa is another strategic imperative for India to raise its game in the region. With a growing convergence of economic and strategic interests, India’s outreach to West Africa and the African continent is set to acquire a new narrative and resonance in days to come.

Modi’s African Safari may yield major economic gains for India

At first sight, it may appear that Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s African safari that begins on July 7 is yet another manifestation of his itch⋅⋅⋅