Earlier this month, Indian President Pranab Mukherjee went on a six-day tour of Africa, visiting Ghana, Cote d’Ivoire and Namibia, where he announced new grant assistance and lines of credit as well as expanded scholarship opportunities. In an email interview, Amanda Lucey, a senior researcher at the Institute for Security Studies in Pretoria, discusses India’s outreach to Africa.
WPR: How extensive are India’s political and economic ties with Africa, and what sectors are the main focus of India’s outreach to the continent?
Amanda Lucey: India has long-standing ties with Africa, stemming from a shared history of colonization, ancient trade ties and the migration of Indian workers to southern and eastern Africa. Traditionally, India has had good ties with Anglophone countries in southern and East Africa, including South Africa and Nigeria, but is looking to enhance ties with Francophone and Lusophone countries, including Mauritius, where Indian investment has increased exponentially in recent years.