Asserting that Indo-African ties have a great future, Union minister V K Singh today said India needs to do more for capacity building in Africa so that people there can be trained to take up projects and run them on their own. The minister of state for external affairs also said that India can benefit a lot from the resource-rich continent, and that “our ties should be mutually beneficial”. He also asked officials to work in a mission mode to set up projects in Africa. “Both India and Africa have learned a lot from each other in various domains. We have got a great future. Over a period of time in India, we have created certain competencies, and Africa has the resources. “This great competency in capacity building, we need to take it forward to our African brother and sisters, who can be trained to take on projects and run them on their own. A great amount has been done in this area, but more needs to be done,” he said. The Union minister was speaking at the ‘3rd Annual International Conference & Exhibition on Africa — A Land of Opportunities’ jointly held by the MEA and PHD Chamber of Commerce here.
Singh also suggested the umbrella business body come up with a “solution map” for facilitating conception and execution of projects. “My humble advice to officials, let us put everything in a mission mode. As a colonial legacy, we tend to be good at fault-finding, but finding solutions is difficult.We need to put projects on a path so that that they don’t see obstacles,” he said. The Union minister said, “great amount of work” needs to be done in Africa, and both countries should further forge ties. “And, we need to sit down, identify what is to be done, rather than wait for it (any project) to fructify in a lab. The sooner we do it, the better,” Singh added. “But, ties can grow forward only if they are mutually beneficial,” he said.
The Ambassador of Eritrea and Dean of Heads of African Missions in India, Alem Tsehaye, said since India and African countries enjoy the historic legacy, their trade multiplication should happen at a rapid pace. President, PHD Chamber, Gopal Jiwarajka, Interim Director General of the International Solar Alliance Upendra Tripathy, and diplomats from African countries were also present on the occasion.