AKLILU KEBEDE ERENA
ECONOMIC OFFICER OF
EMBASSY OF ETHIOPIA, INDIA
What are your Country’s expectations from India?
Africa is increasingly looking at India as a knowledge power and is expecting to benefit from India’s emerging role as a knowledge power and its experience in creating green revolution. India is a developing country but has achieved much. Africa, therefore, can learn from the trajectory of development in India and the Indian experience.
There is enormous scope for cooperation and investment in areas like agriculture, infrastructure, education, roads, energy etc. Africa is expecting more FDI from India besides strong support in the future.
Many mous and declarations were made in the earler Conclaves. Where are we today?
There are number of succeses. For example, areas such as Education, Training, and capacity development are some. At the same time we can mention many areas in which limitations have been observed. These limitations are not because of the fault of one or the other party. As a developing country there may be many areas that need improvement. Both parties should take the responsibility to recognize mistakes and take lessons out of it. That is the most important aspect of the process. Some of the projects which have been promised are lagging behind their schedule or some are not even started at all. For example, in case of Ethiopia we can see India-Africa Farm Science Centre and Integrated Textile Cluster is stalled. Why did this happen? There could be many reasons for that. The Forums should put in place some means of follow-up mechanism to track the implementation of the agreed projects? Furthermore, how are projects ping implemented? What were the procedures? This is very important. In the last two Forums process of identifying, designing and implementing the projects has been done at three levels i.e. at the continental, regional and bilateral levels. This has contributed for sluggish implementation of some projects. Therefore, the coming Forum should identify such problems and fwd solutions.
The present indian govt is keen to foster proactive india africa relations. ?
The Government of India has always been committed to Africa’s cause. There may be some constraints in implementation, but the Will has always been there. It is believed that the Government will take the leading role to foster India-Africa relations a head. In light of this, new areas of Cooperation should be proposed highlighting priorities for the African countries. With the coming of a new Government in India, Africa is aspiring to fast track a more proactive engagement with India.
China has been partnering many African countries in aspirational growth process. Where does india stand?
Africa has been entrenched with lots of problems like lack of peace and security, terrorism, long civil war and poverty etc like. However, Africa is struggling to come out of all sorts of problems. Africa needs to work with true partners such as India and China to realize its dreams. India and China has we been true partners of Africa. Both countries are very much important to Africa as both contribute to support Africa’s effort based on their own realities. India’s partnership with Africa has its own context, historical background and realities that can never match with any other partner including China. Therefore, it is incorrect and inappropriate to compare and contrast India-Africa partnership with that of China. It is believed that African’s do not think that way.