The Indian High commissioner Nagabushana Reddy, Thursday, revealed that so far. his country has invested over $10 billion, which translates into the establishment of over 135 companies ,currently operating in Nigeria.
Reddy made this revelation at an event to commemorate his country’s 60 years of bilateral engagement with Nigeria.
A high level panel discussion featuring trade experts from African countries, and friends of the High Commission was held to share experiences on exploring ways India can actively contribute to the development.
In his remark, Reddy adjudged the six decades engagement between both countries as successful, while restating that more grey areas to strengthen, especially as the prime minister of India, Narendra Mordi recently announced 10 guideline principles to guide India-Africa bilateral cooperation.
“At the cusp of 60 years engagement between India and Nigeria, we have developed a unique connect in diverse areas”.
“India is emerging as a development partner of Nigeria. We are offering about 500 training programs per annum for capacity building under Indian technical and economic cooperation (ITEC) and under the third India-Africa forum summit”.
“India has offered about $175 million concessional loan over the last two years,and is resolved to improve presence in key sectors of the economy.” Mr Reddy said.
The envoy reiterated India’s resolve to support industries in Africa by means of investment, adding that there is a lot to learn from both countries in the area of trade fostering.- high commissioner
The representative of the Director General, Nigerian institute for peace and conflict resolution, Mr Nkemneme Andrew, Chief Research fellow suggested more collaboration in the areas of security and defense, urging India to also focus on youth empowerment as a way to tackle civil unrest and reduce the level of violence perpetrated by youths in the country.
“Nigeria has a lot to learn from India in the area of using manpower to combat poverty, as well as collaboration in the area of defense”
“It is important to know how deal with our youths, engaging them in useful endeavors and we are using this opportunity to tell India to also focus on youth empowerment in the country.
However, he cautioned on the likelihood of a second colonization, adding India wants to help us but they cannot bite more than they can chew.
Generally, experts at the panel agreed that the Nigerian problem can only be solved by Nigerians, with support from friends from the international scene.
They reiterated the need to learn from India the principle of humility, discipline and patience from the Indian community, if Nigeria and Africa is to reach her peak.
Boosting economic engagement with Africa has become central to the Indian envoy, with a recent comment that India is emerging as a strong trade partner of Africa.