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Saturday, October 17, 2015

India aligns relation with Africa on AU 2063 agenda

The India Secretary (West) in the external affairs ministry, Navtej Sarna, has said that India is aligning its relations with Africa alongside Agenda 2063 by the African Union, NaijaAgroNet reports.

He said India and Africa have been "brothers in arms in the fight against apartheid and colonialism,"  adding that there is a positive move towards democracy among African countries and following the adoption of the Agenda 2063 by the African Union, India is aligning its relations with Africa alongside this agenda, a global strategy to optimize use of Africa’s  resources for the benefit of all African and an Integrated, prosperous and peaceful Africa, driven by its own citizens and representing a dynamic force in the global arena.

Sarna, said that India's approach to ties with African countries was that of partnership adding that education and skill development is another area crucial to India-Africa relations.
Agriculture, blue economy and security are key aspects of India's ties with African countries, he said recently while addressing the media ahead of the third India Africa Forum Summit (IAFS) to be held late October.

He said India has also given a line of credit of $7.4 billion, about N1.47 trillion to Africa which is being utilised in 137 projects across 41 countries, NaijaAgroNet learnt.

"India has played a key role in terms of security in Africa. We have had 11 peace keeping forces. Even now, we have four peace keeping forces deployed there and 4,500 security personnel on the ground there." Sarna also said that Indian Navy has also played a key role in the east coast of Africa in terms of curbing piracy.

Blue economy was another area of cooperation India was building on with Africa, he noted. "Blue economy or ocean economy is very important for Africa. We are in talks with countries like Kenya, Mozambique, Tanzania, Seychelles and Mauritius," he said. He identified agriculture as another area of partnership.

"Despite having vast arable land, Africa still needs to get food from outside," said Sarna, adding that getting people from outside to farm agricultural land would be another point of discussion among the leaders.

Cyriacus Nnaji/GEE/ED.OPs
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