Ahead of the African Development Bank’s first annual conference to be held in Ahmedabad next week, the government has said India wants to offer a consultative and cooperative model of assistance to Africa. India has set a target to double the trade with Africa to $100 billion in two years. Africa is not only an important market for Indian goods, but also a major destination for Indian capital with some $54 billion invested in the continent in mining and engineering projects.
Underlining security and economy as the driving imperatives of India’s current outreach to Africa, Amar Sinha, MEA secretary (economic relations), said the country has chosen to be Africa’s partner in development, focusing more on building capacities for the African countries. India provides technical assistance and training in soft skills, he added. Sinha was delivering a keynote address at the round-table discussion on ‘Africa’s Security Challenges’, organised by the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses (IDSA) in collaboration with the African Studies Association of India to commemorate Africa Day next week.
Highlighting some of the major security issues in Africa, Sinha said internal political disturbances that plague many African nations are one of the main causes of instability in Africa. Piracy and oil bunkering, drug trafficking, terrorism and natural disasters were other important security challenges highlighted by Sinha as having adversely affected Africa. According to Sinha, five heads of state from the continent will be coming for the African Development Bank (AfDB) meet, where ‘Africa-Asia Growth Corridor’ will be announced.
The conference of AfDB, which for the first time is hosting its meet overseas from May 22-26, is expected to be inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. To be held at Mahatma Gandhi Convention Centre in Ahmedabad, the event is expected to be attended by over 5,000 delegates from 80 member countries of AfDB, finance ministers and central bank governors of 54 African nations. Japan and other countries which have been involved in African development will be present too. The theme of the meetings will be ‘Transforming Agriculture for Wealth Creation in Africa’. Last year,
Japan and other countries which have been involved in African development will be present too. The theme of the meetings will be ‘Transforming Agriculture for Wealth Creation in Africa’. Last year, an MoU was signed between India and AfDB regarding the holding of annual meetings. AfDB was established in 1963 to promote economic development and social progress of its regional members. India became its member in 1983.