India moves to boost bilateral ties with Africa


With the brighter growth forecast of Africa for the next decade than in most other regions, India moves to bolster the India-Africa relations by expanding capacity building initiatives. Amid increasing Indian investment in Africa, and with a focus on improving cooperation among the global south, India and Africa have enhanced their cooperation in recent years.

Capacity building has been a major factor in bolstering the India-Africa relations. “We feel that capacity building will always remain as a very important element of our cooperation. Our approach of development has always been because we believe that when you partner for development you must build capacities and capabilities in that country and it should not be extracted in your engagement,” Minister of State for External Affairs VK Singh said.

The bilateral trade between India and Africa stood at $72 billion in 2015. At the India-Africa Forum Summit held in New Delhi on October 2015, India unveiled a consolidated fund of $10 billion for a host of development projects, training institutes and scholarships. During the summit, India had also pledged $10 billion in concessional credit to Africa, apart from  an additional grant assistance of $600 million, an India-Africa Development Fund of $100 million and an India-Africa Health Fund of 10 million. India also announced 50,000 scholarships for African students in India over the next five years, and provided support to the expansion of the Pan Africa E-Network and institutions of skilling, training and learning across Africa.

Addressing a 400 member delegation at the CII-EXIM Bank conclave, Mr Singh said: “India will make sure to partner and share with knowledge, resources, technology and other support to the nations in the African continent.” The India-Africa Conference was held from March 14-16 in New Delhi.

Focusing on strengthening India-Africa cooperation, Mr Singh said that technology is a strong foundation of India-Africa partnership. He also said there are fields such as health-care, space, pan Africa e-network, reduction of the digital divide between Africa and the rest of the world.







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