March 4, 2020
The areas of cooperation include the exchange and training of healthcare professionals, pharma regulation and procurement, capacity building, etc
A working group will be set up to further elaborate the details of cooperation and to oversee its implementation
India has been taking steps to improve relations with various African countries including Sierra Leone, Comoros, Kenya, and Zambia over the past year
In light of its growing relationships with many African nations, India aims to open 18 new diplomatic missions in Africa between 2018-2021
Earlier in March, the Union Cabinet approved a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare of India and the Ministry of Health and Public Hygiene of Cote d’Ivoire on cooperation in healthcare. The areas of cooperation include the exchange and training of doctors and other healthcare professionals in various fields, regulation, and procurement of drugs and pharmaceuticals, capacity building in human resources and research development, knowledge sharing, and many more. A working group will be set up to oversee the implementation of the programme.
The Indian-African partnership has seen great movement over the past year. In October 2019, Vice President of India M. Venkaiah Naidu visited Comoros and Sierra Leone, seeking to expand bilateral ties and push for UNSC reforms. India delivered medicines and equipment, transport vehicles, interceptor boats and rice worth over US$4 million to Comoros. India and Sierra Leone signed six new agreements to expand bilateral relations, while India also announced a line of credit worth US$30 million to the country.
A few months prior, in August, the 9th session of the India-Kenya Joint Trade Committee (JTC) was held. At the session, the two sides explored trade opportunities in manufacturing, agriculture, ICT, etc. India has extended credit lines worth over US$220 million to Kenya to support core sectors. Bilateral trade is currently valued at US$2.2 billion.
In the same month, the President of Zambia, Edgar Chagwa Lungu, made his first-ever state visit to India. India and Zambia currently share an impressive bilateral trade and investment partnership, but there is much potential for further collaboration in other sectors. The meeting oversaw the signing of multiple preliminary deals between India and Zambia in the fields of defence, arts & culture, and geology & mineral resources.
India’s historic ties with Africa have seen many such diplomatic and economic partnerships, showcasing their common aspirations in inclusive growth, trade, and investment. In light of its growing relationships with many African nations, India aims to open 18 new diplomatic missions in Africa between 2018-2021.