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Indian Council for Cultural Relations Azad Bhavan Indraprastha Estate New Delhi-110 002 E-mail: africa.quarterly@gmail.com Registered with the Registrar of Newspapers of India Regd No. 14380/61

RESURGENT INDIA & AFRICA: PARTNERS IN 21ST CENTURY NEW PATHWAYS OF COOPERATION ! ECONOMIC SYNERGY ! IT TANGO ! POWER OF IDEAS

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Indian Journal of African Affairs Volume 48 No. 1, February-April 2008

INDIAN COUNCIL FOR CULTURAL RELATIONS NEW DELHI


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contents

A F R I C A

THE WAY AHEAD: REVISITING INDIA’S FOREIGN POLICY IN AFRICA

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On the historic occasion of the first-ever India-Africa Forum Summit, it is only fitting to reexamine India’s foreign policy in Africa and reflect upon ways to revitalise it in the years ahead, says K. Mathews.

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SHARING DREAMS: BOLLYWOOD CASTS ITS SPELL

Bollywood is the ultimate gossamer of emotion and longing in distant Africa. An institution in itself, particularly in South Africa, its actors and musicians are icons from the banks of the Nile to the Cape of Good Hope, says Fakir Hassen.

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INTELLECTUAL CAPITAL: INDIA’S MINDSHARE IN ETHIOPIA

India’s presence in Ethiopia goes back a long way, particularly in the field of education, where Indian teachers have left a deep impress on generations of students, says Yaruingam.


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A COLLECTIVE PAST: DANCING WITH THE GODS

Black music is a social force — its purpose is to elevate or transform both audience and musician. It does not combine sounds to merely create melody, it is not music for music’s sake, for it celebrates life in all its ecstasy. And that is African culture, says Rashmi Kapoor

38 INDIA AND THE MAGHREB STATES There is a need to build a ‘human bridge’ by involving the Indian community and encouraging deeper cultural interaction with the region, says A.K. Pasha

68 INDIA-AFRICA ECONOMIC TIES ON AN UPSWING

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A COMMON FUTURE: ‘FROM YESTERDAY TO TOMORROW’

India’s Minister of Local Government, Youth Affairs and Sports, Mani Shankar Aiyar, speaks about India’s enduring emotional and intellectual bonds with Africa that go back to the heady times of anti-colonial struggle.

The fourth India-Africa economic conclave ended on an upbeat note as businessmen of both sides struck deals worth $10 billion. The conclave set new benchmarks for partnership between India and Africa.

86 IN CONVERSATION: WANGARI MUTA MAATHAI

Maathai, the iconic Kenyan environmentalist and the first African woman to win the Nobel Prize for Peace, on what India and Africa can do together to create a more equitable, clean and harmonious world.

72 PEACE UPLIFT FOR AFRICA India’s military engagement with Africa is more than a tactical one — it is one of meaningful capacity-building, says Ranjit Kumar

106 PHOTO FEATURE ON AFRICA NEW INITIATIVES: FRANCOPHONE AFRICA — FORGING NEW BONDS

The new economic dynamic in West Asia provides a functional framework for a new and purposeful engagement between India and Africa’s Francophone countries, says Dr. Vidhan Pathak

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102 BOOKS & IDEAS 114 TRAVEL: AROUND INDIA 118 CONTRIBUTORS


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Rates of Subscription Annual Three-year Subscription Subscription Rs. 100.00 Rs. 250.00 US $40.00 US $100.00 £16.0 £40.0 (Including airmail postage) Subscription rates as above payable in advance preferably by bank draft/MO in favour of Indian Council for Cultural Relations, New Delhi. Printed and Published by Pavan K. Varma Director-General Indian Council for Cultural Relations Azad Bhavan, Indraprastha Estate New Delhi - 110002 Editor: Manish Chand Cover Photo: Photo montage IANS ISBN 0001-9828

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The Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR), founded in 1950 to strengthen cultural ties and promote understanding between India and other countries, functions under the Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India. As part of its effort, the Council publishes, apart from books, six periodicals in five languages –– English quarterlies (Indian Horizons and Africa Quarterly), Hindi Quarterly (Gagananchal), Arabic Quarterly (Thaqafat-ul-Hind), Spanish bi-annual (Papeles de la India) and French bi-annual (Recontre Avec l’Inde). Africa Quarterly (Indian Journal of African Affairs) is published every three months. The views expressed in the articles included in this journal are those of the contributors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the ICCR. All rights reserved. No part of this journal may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any from or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without the permission of the ICCR.

Editorial correspondence and manuscripts, including book reviews, should be addressed to: The Editor Africa Quarterly Indian Council for Cultural Relations Azad Bhavan Indraprastha Estate New Delhi-110 002 E-mail: africa.quarterly@gmail.com

February-April 2008


M E S S A G E

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Prime Minister MESSAGE

I am delighted that Africa Quarterly is publishing a special issue to coincide with the India-Africa Forum Summit being held in New Delhi on 8 and 9 April, 2008. India’s links with Africa go back to prehistoric times, when we were physically joined together as part of Gondwanaland. Today, the Indian Ocean binds us together and beckons us to explore newer horizons. Our relationship is civilisational and historical. The India-Africa Forum Summit is a unique and unprecedented gathering of African leaders on Indian soil. It will be a celebration of our rich heritage, and an affirmation of our collective desire to shape a better future for our children. India and Africa face similar challenges, and we seek to learn from each other’s experiences in addressing them. We hope to identify a new framework for IndoAfrican cooperation in diverse areas — political, economic, scientific and cultural — that befits our mutual strengths. The potential for cross-fertilisation of ideas between India and Africa is enormous, and deserves to be fully tapped. Intellectuals, thinkers and writers have a vital role to play in this regard. I therefore applaud the contributors to this special issue for their efforts, and hope that this will generate a groundswell of support to governmental efforts to strengthen India’s relations with Africa. This is an important emerging priority area of our foreign policy, and I invite all your readers to be participants in this enterprise.

Manmohan Singh New Delhi March 25, 2008

February-April 2008

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M E S S A G E

fons’k ea=h] Hkkjr MINISTER OF EXTERNAL AFFAIRS INDIA

iz.kc eq[kthZ PRANAB MUKHERJEE

MESSAGE I am very pleased to learn that Africa Quarterly is publishing a special edition of its quarterly journal to coincide with the convening of the India-Africa Forum Summit by the Government of India in New Delhi on 8 & 9 April, 2008. Let me, at the outset, convey to the readers of the Quarterly my best wishes. We in India have longstanding links of brotherhood and affinity with Africa. India and Africa are natural allies. We share a common worldview and a common civilizational heritage. We are both grappling with the problems of ensuring inclusive development and growth in our countries. We are united by common ideas, ideals and icons. Africa has always been a major focus of Indian foreign policy. This is truer today than before and the Forum is intended to bring together representative leaders from the nations of Africa to advise us on how best we can take our partnership forward in the 21st century and make our engagement even deeper. Africa is witnessing far-reaching and positive changes. It has set itself on the path of peace, stability, democracy and development. We seek to partner Africa in its new resurgence and believe that there is enormous opportunity for mutually beneficial cooperation between our two sides to achieve our common objective of providing a better quality of life for our people and to contribute to the overall development and progress of the world at large. India and Africa share a common vision of the world and we are determined to work together on vital issues such as the fight against terrorism, climate change, multilateral trade negotiations, UN reform and reform of the International Financial Architecture. I am confident that the India-Africa Forum Summit will be a great success.

(Pranab Mukherjee) 8

February-April 2008


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PRESIDENT INDIAN COUNCIL FOR CULTURAL RELATIONS (ICCR)

MEMBER OF PARLIAMENT RAJYA SABHA (UPPER HOUSE OF PARLIAMENT)

MESSAGE The India-Africa Forum Summit constitutes a landmark event in the history of our relationship with Africa that derives its strength from an enduring historical friendship. The Indian Council for Cultural Relations takes great pride in releasing the special edition of its flagship publication Africa Quarterly on this historic occasion. The Africa Quarterly has already established its niche and is gaining credibility and strength among opinion makers both in India and Africa. Africa represents a continent with a tremendous development potential. Our historic relationship has grown into a sustainable partnership. We are natural partners in search of a better life for over two billion people — one third of the world’s humanity — and in ensuring their rightful place in the emerging international order. The Indian Council for Cultural Relations continues to attach high priority to strengthening our linkages with countries in Africa as well as to expanding people to people contacts. In pursuit of these objectives we maintain an active programme of exchange of cultural delegations, scholars and experts as well as of grant of scholarship to students. I am confident that the Summit will be a defining step in imparting a new dynamism to our age-old historical and cultural ties.

(Karan Singh)

February-April 2008

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E D I T O R I A L

■ From the Editor’s Desk

More Power to India-Africa Ties

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ndia’s first-ever summit with 14 African countries in April promises to be a hinge moment in the ongoing transformation of its long-standing political, economic and cultural ties with the resource-rich African continent that has entered a new era of renaissance and renewal. In a sense, there is a striking symmetry in attitudes and ethos in present-day India and Africa — victims of colonialism and Orientalist clichés crafted by myth-making ideologues with narrow agendas, the two sides are now looking ahead to pool their resources, enterprise and energies to become robust stakeholders in an evolving international system. There is a can-do mood of optimism and a resolute will to overcome a shared past of colonialist injustice and missed opportunities to craft a hopeful future for over two billion people — one-third of the world’s humanity — who live in India and Africa. This symmetry in fates and circumstances, buoyed by a congenial global environment and economic resurgence in two of the most populous regions in the world, is now translating into a broad congruence of political, economic and strategic interests between India and Africa. The result of this common worldview and civilisational heritage is an intensified dialogue of ideas and an exchange of initiatives between Indian and African leaders to create a 21st century world that reflects the changing balance of power and aspirations of developing countries. The India-Africa Forum Summit plans to take this rich and multi-layered dialogue to new heights. This is also an apposite moment to look back at the long history of India-Africa engagement from the time when Indian traders in their wooden dhows set sail for the African shores and later marched hand in hand in the fight against imperialism, analyse the present trends and map out future trajectories of the relationship that has the potential to influence the course of an emerging world order. The special issue of Africa Quarterly, a platform for scholars, writers and intellectuals who have a stake in the blossoming India-Africa ties, seeks to capture myriad strands of this multi-faceted relationship and explore ideas and concepts that can help to bring the full potential of this mutually empowering and enriching engagement to fruition. In his article, based on a stirring speech he gave at the Africa Day function two years ago, Minister of Local Government, Youth Affairs and Sports Mani Shankar Aiyar, also a former diplomat, retraces the ideological foundations of the India-Africa partnership during the nearly two-decades tenure of India's first prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru. The article is replete with little-known details and delightful anecdotes that underscore the emotive depth and range of the relationship in an age when idealism was not confused with naivety.

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India, even before it became independent, broke diplomatic relations with South Africa in 1946 when Nehru was part of an interim administration. “He did this long before sanctions became a common word in our common vocabulary or before the UN began thinking about sanctions. And certainly before individual countries around the world decided it was a legitimate form of protest,” recalls Aiyar in an attempt to place India’s enduring commitment to Africa’s liberation in perspective. Nehru’s vision of an emancipated Africa had a deep respect for African thought and the African way of life at its heart. “We have to realise, first of all, that there is a definite African point of view, an African background of thought and social organisation, an African culture deep rooted in the background,” wrote Nehru in 1955. Moving beyond the exhilaration and idealism of the NonAligned Movement and Afro-Asian solidarity, Girijesh Pant, an academic who writes on African issues, argues for broadening the scope of the India-Africa dialogue through a public debate among diverse segments of societies and institutions, including educational institutions, non-governmental organisations and businesses. Pant also argues for putting concerns related to sustainable development and the knowledge economy at the forefront of diplomacy. Making an impassioned appeal to move beyond stereotypes and ritualistic gestures, Pant makes a compelling case for moulding India-Africa diplomacy in tune with the emerging realities of globalisation to tackle global problems like terrorism, climate change, pandemics and multi-lateral trade negotiations. He recommends the creation of special knowledge processing zones, a kind of Silicon Valley in Africa that can pool together Indian IT prowess and the African scientific creativity to jointly produce patented technologies, and the setting up of special healthcare zones that can rescue Africa from the deadly spiral of diseases like HIV/AIDS and malaria. “India could think in terms of creating a state-of-theart technology centre in a country where African manpower is trained and scientists from India, Africa and other countries could be collectively engaged in research to produce technologies which can be patented and marketed worldwide,” Pant says. Technology transfers, training and trade are, in fact, the three key pillars of India’s win-win partnership with Africa. In an article entitled ‘Wiring Africa to the World’, Suresh Kumar writes on the revolutionary potential of new technologies in transforming the socio-economic profile of the African continent. The ongoing digital boom in East Africa is a clear pointer to the role of IT in changing the educational and economic landscape of Africa. India, with its globally recognised strength in IT, is uniquely placed to join hands

February-April 2008


A F R I C A with Africa in its pursuit of economic freedom and millennium development goals. The India-assisted Pan-African eNetwork, which seeks to digitally connect African countries and bring them benefits of tele-education and tele-medicine by linking Indian universities and super-specialty hospitals with hubs in African countries, is a striking example of what India and Africa can do together. Most importantly, new technologies could be a powerful tool in the fight against poverty in Africa and other developing countries, writes Kumar. Technology was also one of the reigning themes at an economic conclave held in March in New Delhi where African ministers and businessmen sought technology transfers from India. African countries are increasingly looking at India as their chosen source of low-cost, adaptable and affordable technologies that are ideally suited to African conditions. The conclave, the fourth of its kind, was the largest-ever interface between Indian and African businessmen and ministers who discussed projects worth $10 billion and promised to meet again in larger numbers. The powerful buzz the conclave generated underlined a new economic synergy between the growing economies of India and Africa as the two sides resolved to multiply manifold their bilateral trade in the near future. With Africa emerging as the hub of a new global oil rush, energy security is set to become another unifying theme of the India-Africa engagement. In his article on Francophone Africa, Vidhan Pathak writes how the West African region, which is said to have huge reserves of oil, could be crucial to India’s quest for energy security and India's efforts to expand its engagement in the region across diverse sectors. Besides West Africa, the North African region with whom India has long-standing cultural and economic ties, as Dr. A.K. Pasha writes, is equally central to India’s energy diplomacy in Africa. Nigeria has emerged as India’s second largest source of imported crude petroleum. Algeria, Libya, Sudan, Egypt, Angola and Mozambique are India’s leading oil suppliers in Africa. Peacekeeping, joint military exercises, training and assistance in capacity-building in the defence area are important elements of India’s defence and strategic partnership with Africa — an area of cooperation that is set to acquire new forms in the future. India has tried to forge independent defence relations with African countries by helping them maintain peace and stability and assiting them in capacitybuilding in the defence sector, writes Ranjit Kumar. Bolstering defence capabilities help African nations to stabilise economically and politically by providing a secure environment for growth and development. This is as broad a canvas as is possible for the two sides, separated by vast distances but akin in spirit, to script afresh a durable all-encompassing partnership that is aimed at mutual empowerment and reinforcing each other’s strengths in a competitive global system. It’s a partnership of equals that feeds on genuine respect, trust and mutual admiration. Many

Q U A R T E R L Y

African countries look at the Indian democracy as a model for Africa. India is also seen as a role model for her accomplishments in sectors as diverse as agriculture and smallindustries to IT, democracy and space technology, writes K. Mathews in an article that outlines a template for fashioning a more contemporary partnership between India and Africa. India, which has always rooted for Africa at global fora, is also looking at Africa and its people with admiration for their resilience, optimism and grit in the face of myriad debilitating problems like poverty and ethnic violence in many parts of the continent. Africa’s economic resurgence, with some African economies even growing at double digit figures, is a source of inspiration for policy-makers and economists in India. “India-Africa partnership will be more affordable and a low-cost, high-benefit enterprise. Above all, both India and African countries can emerge as a moral force and a power bloc in world affairs,” writes Mathews, who has spent long years teaching in Africa. External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee has aptly illuminated the global dimension of India-Africa partnership in the 21st century. “India and Africa share a common vision of the world and we are determined to work together on vital issues such as the fight against terrorism, climate change, multilateral trade negotiations, UN reforms and the reform of the international financial architecture,” says Mukherjee. But no partnership can be complete and fulfilling without the emotive resonance that popular participation brings. The idea is to build a people’s bridge through culture, films and mass media. The popularity and charisma of Bollywood icons and films from Marrakesh in North Africa to Johannesburg in South Africa has to be seen to be believed. Soul-stirring African music and robust beats of African drums are also finding a new fan following in India. This cultural tango and popular connectivity will be the crucial glue that will bind the India-Africa partnership in the days to come. Being an economist by training and a statesman by instinct, Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has put people-centred development at the heart of the India-Africa partnership and set an upbeat tone for the forthcoming summit. “It will be a celebration of our rich heritage and an affirmation of our collective desire to shape a better future for our children,” writes the prime minister in a special message for Africa Quarterly. Calling Africa “an important priority area for India’s foreign policy”, Manmohan Singh has called for a “cross-fertilisation of ideas” between India and Africa so that the potential of this multi-faceted engagement can be fully tapped. “Intellectuals, thinkers and writers have a vital role to play in this regard,” he says. Africa Quarterly has been trying to promote a conversation between India and Africa for years. May a hundred thoughts bloom and fecudante the India-Africa partnership in the days to come. Happy reading, and be generous to share your views and critiques.

February-April 2008

Manish Chand 11


I N T E R V I E W

‘India a sincere FRIEND and partner of Africa’ Minister of State for External Affairs ANAND SHARMA says it’s time to crystallise the partnership of development in which a resurgent Africa and a rising India will write a new chapter in the 21st century.

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inister of State for External Affairs Anand Sharma is the most visible face of Indian diplomacy in Africa. Known for his extensive connections with the African leadership and his commitment to Africa’s liberation going back to his student days, Sharma was actively involved in the Indian movement against apartheid and chaired the World Youth Action Against Apartheid. In more recent times, Sharma has been one of the prime movers behind refocusing India’s Africa policy and in forging a win-win partnership with the African continent, which will be reflected in the first-ever India-Africa Forum Summit in April 2008 In this interview with Manish Chand, Editor, Africa Quarterly, Sharma talks about India’s enduring commitment to partnering Africa in its resurgence and underlines the uniqueness of the Indian approach that is aimed at empowerment and enrichment of the continent through education and sharing experiences in development. “India has never looked at short-term gains in Africa. We are committed to being a sincere friend and partner in Africa’s development,” says Sharma. “Now is the time to crystallise this partnership of development. A resurgent Africa and a rising India will write a new chapter in the 21st century,” says Sharma in a prophetic tone. Q. India and Africa have centuries-old economic and cultural ties. But it is only now India is holding a summit with 14 African countries representing the entire continent. How did the idea of an India-Africa summit originate? A. India’s engagement with Africa is historic and time-tested. It goes back many centuries. However, the unique nature of this relationship has been more manifest in the last century when both India and Africa were sharing similar experiences of colonisation and subjugation, which had resulted in the denial of opportunities to people of both sides. After India’s independence, our first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru had clearly articulated the country’s abiding commitment to Africa and its people and also India’s resolve to act in solidarity for the liberation of the countries in Africa. That is a part of the history of engagement between India and Africa.

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Indian Minister of State for External Affairs, Anand Sharma, with Ethiopian Prime Minister, Meles Zenawi, during his visit to Addis Ababa for the African Union Summit in January.

Following the emergence of independent nations in Africa — the process that culminated in the historic transition in South Africa from an apartheid state to a multi-racial democracy and the decolonisation of Namibia — the issue has been to meet the aspirations of the people of Africa and respond to the developmental challenges faced by them. India, therefore, has been engaged both bilaterally with countries in Africa and with the regional economic communities. We feel that it is now the time to deepen and diversify the engagement. The government is hosting the India-Africa Forum Summit in New Delhi from April 4 to 9. It will begin with a meeting of senior officials on April 4, followed by a meeting of Foreign Ministers on April 7 before the summit on April 8. The idea of a summit has been in the making for long, but acquired a faster pace only in the last two years. India has been working on developing an Africa-wide dialogue. We are developing programmes of action with regional economic communities such as SADC, COMESA, EAC and ECOWAS. The idea of an India-Africa Forum came up during the visit to India in December 2006 by AU Commission Chairman Prof. Alpha Oumar Konare.

February-April 2008


A F R I C A

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Subsequently, a joint working group was established between India and the African Union, which interacted with the permanent representatives of the member-states to work out the details of the forum/summit. The participation and format of the summit have been decided in consultation with the African Union Commission and the permanent representatives of the African Union. We have invited the chairs of the regional economic communities and their secretaries-general and the founding members of the NEPAD initiative besides the current and former chair of the AU. We believe that this representative group, which would have the appropriate regional balance, will provide the impetus for a fuller discussion on how India could enhance its engagement with Africa in the future while keeping in view Indian capacities and African aspirations.

about empowering and enabling the young men and women of Africa to be gainfully employed. We are looking at partnership projects, mineral development, jointly developing the resources with Africa and also ensuring value-addition to benefit the countries concerned and this has been recognised and appreciated in Africa. What I wanted to say is that we have been engaging Africa for centuries. The point I wish to emphasise is that India is not embarking on a new journey to discover Africa and its people. We have identified ourselves with the just causes and struggles, we have acted in solidarity with the African people, we have never looked at short-term gains. India has never been and we shall never be exploitative in our approach. We are committed to being a sincere friend and partner in Africa’s development.

Q. What does such a summit plan to achieve? What are India’s expectations from the summit? A. The formal outcome of the summit would be a declaration and an action plan. The draft action plan is under preparation. The second document, which will be a declaration, will address broader areas of cooperation and our common views on regional and international issues, including the fight against terrorism, climate change and the WTO negotiations. In the action plan, we have agreed to focus on human resources and institutional capacity-building and education, science and technology, agricultural productivity and food security, industrial growth, including small and medium enterprises and minerals, development in the health sector, the development of infrastructure and ICT. So far, we have given priority attention to capacity-building and human resource development. Since the sixties, thousands of African students have been welcomed to India and given Indian scholarships under the flagship ITEC programme. In addition, we gave scholarships to African students for various professional programmes and vocational training courses. This, we felt in our considered view, is the best way for the empowerment of the African people to enable their full participation in the social and economic development processes. Most African countries are registering impressive growth and democracy is taking firm roots. India, too, is one of the fastest-growing economies, which has registered robust growth in the last one-and-a-half decades. This is an appropriate time for India and Africa to crystallise the partnership of development.

Q. Africa is also emerging as a global oil hub with fresh discoveries of huge reserves of oil in different African countries. How important is Africa to India’s quest for energy security? A. We would like to encourage both our public sector units and our private sector to invest in Africa in all fields, including in the energy sector. Africa is a resource-rich continent. And, yes, when we are talking of economic engagement and energy security, Africa does factor in importantly. But our commitment is to ensure that as partners we have joint ventures for exploration, development and creating the infrastructure in the hydrocarbon sector. India is not looking at resources. India is looking at Africa’s development in all fields, which is important in the 21st century.

Q. Africa is emerging as the hub of a new scramble for resources with leading world powers eyeing the continent for its oil and natural resources. How is India’s approach to Africa different from that of others? A. We want to be a sincere partner in Africa’s development and share our experiences in development, our expertise and our strengths in ICT, agriculture and SMEs. And we also wish to share our resources. We have been doing so since we ourselves faced overwhelming developmental challenges nearly four decades ago. The Indian investment is going into Africa, whether it is the public sector or in the private sector. We are following the correct ethical practices. And our approach is

Q. India and Africa are natural allies. How can the two sides expand strategic dialogue between them? How can they cooperate on global issues? A. We have already established strategic partnerships with some important African countries like Nigeria and South Africa. We have had sustained engagement with regional organisations and also with the AU leadership. This summit of the leaders of Africa with our Prime Minister will also address regional and global issues like the fight against terrorism and pandemics, the UN reforms and climate change. This summit will crystallise the dialogue between the two sides and we hope it will open up new pathways of cooperation between India and Africa. Q. You have travelled extensively in Africa and have been a passionate advocate for various African causes. How do you see the unfolding economic resurgence in Africa? What are its implications for India and the world? A. My own engagement with Africa has been very intense. I was chairman of the India-Africa apartheid committee. Africa’s development is absolutely essential in a world which is getting increasingly globalised. You cannot address pressing global issues like poverty alleviation, food security, health security, global terrorism and climate change without including Africa prominently in a cooperative global mechanism. A resurgent Africa and a rising India will together write a new chapter in the 21st century.

February-April 2008

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Algeria

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lgeria, the second largest country on the African continent is bordered on the west by Morocco and Western Sahara, and on the east by Tunisia and Libya. The Mediterranean Sea to the north, and to the south are Mauritania, Mali, and Niger. The Saharan region, which constitutes 85 percent of the country, is almost uninhabited. After more than a century of rule by France, Algerians achieved independence in 1962. Algeria’s primary political party, the National Liberation Front (NLF), has dominated politics ever since. Algeria, a gateway between Africa and Europe, represents a Parliamentary form of Republic and its economy is dependent on petroleum-based products. Capital: Algiers President: Abdelaziz Bouteflika Population: 33,333,216 (July 2007 est.) Life expectancy: 73.52 years Major languages: Arabic, French, and Berber Major religions: Christianity, Islam and Judaism Ethnic groups: Arab-Berber, European Key political parties: Algerian National Front; National Democratic Rally; National Entente Movement, etc Exports: $63.3 billion f.o.b. (2007 est.) Export commodities: Petroleum, natural gas, and petroleum products Imports: $26.08 billion f.o.b. (2007 est.)

Burkina Faso

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Envisioning a CARING future India sees in an emerging Africa the human face of the continent and seeks a genuine partnership of equals that will build on the legacy of goodwill forged during the days of the anti-colonial struggle, says Manish Chand

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ndia’s rise as an economic power and a key global player capable of shaping an Asian century has become a mantra in the global strategic discourse. Almost every month, a new book appears that seeks to unravel the meaning of an Asian renaissance and its ramifications for an evolving world order. In contrast, Africa’s resurgence, quietly purposeful and incremental over the years, has not received the kind of attention it deserves. Not that the world’s leading powers have not noticed the transformation in African countries, which are emerging from colonial shadows and finally taking charge of their destinies. But where most of the world has seen in Africa goldmines and oil wells waiting to be sucked dry, India sees the human face of the continent and seeks a genuine partnership of equals that builds upon solid foundations of goodwill built during the heyday of the anti-colonial struggle. The gaze makes all the difference. It all depends on who is looking and how he is looking. There is clearly a world of difference between a neo-colonialist gaze and a friendly, understanding look. As Mahatma Gandhi, who forged his unique instrument of passive resistance in South Africa, wrote decades ago: “The commerce between India and Africa will be of ideas and services, not of manufactured goods and raw materials after the fashion of Western exploiters.” This is where India’s unique strengths in the knowledge economy and Africa’s aspirations for a better life for its people meld to create an empowering partnership that could alter the world’s balance of power in the days to come. This overarching vision of crafting a world order that adequately reflects the legitimate aspirations of developing countries and multi-faceted bilateral cooperation for people-centred development animates the forthcoming India-Africa Forum Summit. The focus of the summit will be on providing a more contemporary 21st century character to the partnership that takes into account radical changes under way in the India and Africa. Economic resurgence in Africa, despite scores of debilitating problems like poverty, the vicious cycle of debt burden, and diseases like HIV/AIDS and malaria, is turn-

andlocked Burkina Faso is situated in Western Africa, north of Ghana. It achieved independence from France in 1960. After coming to power in 1983, Thomas Sankara gave the country its present name, which translates to “land of honest men”. Present President Blaise Campaore came to power in a 1987, and has won every election since then. Cotton production is the economic mainstay for the Parliamentary Republic. Capital: Ouagadougou President: Blaise Campaore

Population: 14.8 million (UN, 2007) Life expectancy: 51 years Major Languages: French, African languages Major religions: Christianity, Islam Ethnic groups: Mossi, Gurunsi, Senufo, Lobi, Bobo, Mande, etc Political parties and leaders: African Democratic Rally, Alliance for Democracy and Federation, Citizen’s Popular Rally, Coalition of Democratic Forces of Burkina, etc Exports: $676 million f.o.b. (2007 est.) Imports: $1.39 billion

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ing out to be real. “Something decidedly new is on the horizon in Africa, something that began in the 1990s. Many African countries are rewriting rules,” said a recent World Bank report, capturing this mood of economic buoyancy in the continent. A host of conducive factors like improved political stability, people-centric governance, economic reforms, a confident embrace of globalisation, surplus oil revenues, robust commodity prices and cautious monetary and fiscal policies have contributed to this ongoing economic resurgence. The African economy is expected to grow at an average of over 5 percent, which will be above the global average this year. However, it could also experience the ripple effects of the slowdown in the American economy. A recent survey by The Economist reveals that 6 of the 12 fastest-growing economies are in sub-Saharan Africa! Add economic vibrancy to a steady embrace of democratic values and good governance — key values enshrined in the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) — by many African countries and you get a picture of a confident and self-assured continent that knows where it is headed. Two-thirds of African countries have successfully held multi-party elections and as many as 24 countries have signed up for the African Peer Review Mechanism that allows a panel of “wise men” to benchmark the performance of African countries against four broad parameters, including democracy and good governance. India seeks to partner Africa in its resurgence, as Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said in his address to the Nigerian National Assembly last year. The Prime Minister’s address encapsulated the Indian approach to Africa aimed at empowerment and enrich-

ALGERIA (N EPAD 6)

LIBYA (CEN-SAD+ ARAB MEGHRAB UNION

EGYPT (NEPO-6)

SENEGAL (NEPAD-6) ETHIOPIA (NEPAD-6) BURKINA FASO (ECOWAS)

NIGERIA (NEPAD-6)

UGANDA (EAC)

D.R. OF CONGO (ECCAS)

KENYA (COMESA) (IGAD)

ZAMBIA (SADC)

* CEN-SAD : The Community of Sahel-Saharan States * COMESA : The Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa * EAC : East African Community * ECCAS : Economic Community of Central African State * ECOWAS : The Economic Community of West African States * IGAD : Intergovernmental Authority on Development * NEPAD : The New Partnership for Africa’s Development * SADC : Southern African Development Community

thiopia is in East-Central Africa, bordered on the west by the Sudan, the east by Somalia and Djibouti, the south by Kenya, and the northeast by Eritrea. Unique among African countries, the ancient Ethiopian monarchy maintained its freedom from colonial rule with the exception of the 193641 Italian occupation during World War II. In 1974, a military junta, the Derg, deposed Emperor Haile Selassie and established a socialist state. A constitution was adopted in 1994, and Ethiopia’s first multiparty elections were held in 1995. Capital: Addis Ababa

DR Congo

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he Democratic Republic of Congo is situated in Central Africa. It borders Gabon, Cameroon, the Central African Republic, and the Angola enclave of Cabinda, with a short stretch of coast on the South Atlantic. Established as a Belgian colony in 1908, Congo gained its independence in 1960. Colonel Joseph Mobutu became the president in November 1965. In March 2002, Sassou-Nguesso was elected President of the state. Capital: Kinshasa President: Joseph Kabila Population: 62.6 million (UN, 2007) Life expectancy: 45 years Major languages: French, Lingala, Kiswahili, Kikongo, Tshiluba Major religions: Christianity, Islam Political parties and leaders: Christian Democrat Party, Congolese Rally for Democracy, Convention of Christian Democrats, etc Exports: $1.587 billion f.o.b. (2006) Export commodities: Diamonds, copper, crude oil, coffee, cobalt Imports: $2.263 billion f.o.b. (2006) Import commodities: Foodstuffs, machinery, transport equipment, fuels GDP: 2.8% (2007 est.) Currency: Communaute Financiere Africaine franc (XAF) Press: Le Potential, La Reference Plus, L’AAvenir Radio broadcast stations: La Voix du Congo, Radio Okapi, Raga FM Television broadcast stations: RTNC, RTGA, Digiyal Congo, Raga TV

President: Woldegiorgis Girma Population: 76,511,887 Major languages: Amarigna, Oromigna, Tigrigna, Somaligna, Guaragigna, Sidamigna, Hadiyigna etc., Major religions: Christianity, Islam Major ethnic groups: Oromo, Amara, Tigraway, Somalie, Guragie, Sidama, Welaita etc Exports: Coffee, gold, leather products and oilseeds Imports: Food and live animals, petroleum and petroleum products, chemicals, machinery, motor vehicles, cereals, textiles etc. GDP: 9.8% (2007 est.), Currency: Birr (ETB)

February-April 2008

Ethiopia

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SOUTH AFRICA (NEPAD-6)

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Egypt

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gypt, best-known for its pyramids, is situated in northern Africa. The country borders the Mediterranean Sea to the north, Libya to the west, Sudan to the south and the Gaza Strip and Israel to the east. Although Egypt has changed its constitution to allow the opposition to contest presidential polls, potential candidates must meet strict criteria for participation. Egypt’s teeming cities — and almost all agricultural activity — are concentrated along the banks of the Nile, and on the river’s delta. The nation is rich with natural gas, iron ore, phosphates and manganese reserves. Capital: Cairo President: Md. Hosni Mubarak Major religions: Christianity, Islam Major languages: Arabic (official), English and French Political parties and leaders: National Democratic Party, National Progressive Unionist Grouping, New Wafd Party, Tomorrow Party Exports: $27.42 billion (2007 est.) Export commodities: Crude oil and petroleum products, cotton, textiles, metal products, chemicals Imports: $40.48 billion (2007 est.) Import commodities: Machinery and equipment, foodstuffs, chemicals, wood products, fuels GDP: 7.2% (2007 est.) Currency: Egyptian pound (EGP) Press: Al-Ahram, Al-Jumhuriyah, Al-Akhbar, Al-Ahali, Al-Wafd and Middle East Times

Ghana

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ment of the continent. “We envision an Africa that is self-reliant, economically vibrant and at peace with itself and the world. India will offer its fullest cooperation to harness the great potential of the African people. We seek to become close partners in Africa’s resurgence,” he said. This is the background against which leaders of 14 African countries come to India for the summit (April 8-9) for talks with Prime Minister Singh. The limited summit, which is a precursor to a larger one with nearly all 54 countries of the African continent in a couple of years, seeks to provide an institutional framework for building a win-win economic and strategic partnership. The dialogue will cover a constellation of kindred themes like trade and investment, energy, infrastructure, democratisation, UN reforms, peace and security, and terrorism. India and Africa have been in a sustained dialogue in all these areas. This summit will, however, make this conversation more focused and is expected to culminate in an action plan to firm up this partnership. The countries invited for the summit have been chosen by the African Union and includes Algeria, Libya, Egypt, Ethiopia, Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Ghana, Senegal, Nigeria, Burkina Faso, Zambia and South Africa, the current and future chair of the African Union Commission. As India and Africa move towards a more diversified strategic, economic and technological partnership, the two sides are focusing on building institutional arrangements to spur this across-the-sector engagement. In fact, India can learn a thing or two from sub-regional economic groupings in Africa like the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and the East African Community (EAC) and pan-African bodies like the African Union. India is already a dialogue partner in the AU and efforts are on to forge institutional interface with bodies like the African Development Bank, the Economic Commission for Africa and the Pan-African Parliament. India is also trying to forge institutional links with key sub-regional groupings like SADC, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the Economic Community for Central African States (ECCAS). Some critics contend that the idea of the summit is a belated awakening on India’s part and is meant to be a response to aggressive oil-driven diplomacy pursued by other influential countries in Africa. There may be a grain of truth in their critique, but they miss the larger context of India’s approach to engagement with Africa and the huge reservoirs of mutual goodwill that nourish this partnership. In many ways, the summit is an ideal occasion for introspection and reevaluation. For one thing, India views with distaste the notion of Africa as the hub of a new resource war among the world’s major players with purely mercantile interests in the region. India believes that this resource-driven thrust may create small enclaves of prosperity but will eventually bleed the region dry and leave its people more impoverished than ever. Also, Indian officials like to stress that they are confident of their unique partnership with Africa grounded in common interests and the pursuit of a just world order, and therefore are not in competition with anyone. It’s not that India is sitting on some moral high horse and loves giving sermons to an ethically blind world. Far from it. Like any other country, India is promoting its interests in Africa. And perhaps it needs to do so with more vigour and high visibility diplomacy, but in doing so it focuses on what could possibly be Africa’s most

hana is one of the five African nations along the northern coastline of the Gulf of Guinea. It is bordered on the west by Cote d’Ivoire, on the north by Burkina Faso, and on the east by Togo. The country consists mostly of low-lying Savannah regions, with a central belt of forest. Ghana’s rich history centers on the Ashanti empire, which rose to power during the late 17th century. The European presence in Ghana is also marked by the multitude of colonial forts that dot its coastline. Formed from the merger of the British colony of the Gold Coast and the Togoland trust territory, Ghana

in 1957 became the first sub-Saharan country in colonial Africa to gain independence. Capital: Accra President: John Kufuor Population: 22,931,299 Life expectancy: 60 years Major languages: English, Akan, Ewe Major religions: Christianity, Islam Ethnic groups: Akan, Mole-Dagbon, Ewe, GaDangme, Guan, Gurma, Grusi, Mande-Busanga Exports: $4.194 billion (2007 est.) Imports: $8.073 billion (2007 est.)

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A F R I C A precious resource — its people. That’s why Indian diplomacy has tended to concentrate on assisting Africa in human resource development through a host of training programmes and transfer of technologies suited to local conditions. Massive illiteracy lies at the bottom of myriad social and economic ills that afflict not just Africa but also India. Even as India struggles to lift its millions of people from the bog of illiteracy, it has offered scholarships to thousands of African students over the years through its flagship Indian Technical And Economic Cooperation (ITEC) programme and offered them training in its numerous technical and IT institutes. The ITEC programme is in fact one of the prime instruments of Indian diplomacy in empowering the African continent through education with over 1,000 officials from sub-Saharan Africa receiving training annually in India under this scheme. Over 15,000 African students study in India annually, many of whom go on to occupy key positions in government and business in their respective countries. One-fourth of the Ethiopian cabinet, for instance, has been trained in India and three Nigerian presidents have studied in India. Health is another area where India wants to make a visible difference in Africa, with millions of Africans suffering from a host of life-threatening diseases like HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis. India’s pharmaceutical companies that compare with the best in the world have managed to come out with cheap retroviral drugs for HIV/AIDS that could go a long away in mitigating the debilitating impact of the disease. India’s diplomatic thrust in Africa is to help the continent in its own development without dictating any agenda. Technical assistance and capacity-building programmes in Africa, concessional lines of credit in the spirit of private-public partnership, and contribution to peacekeeping operations are some of the key elements of India’s all-encompassing cooperative partnership with Africa. The continent, for instance, is the largest recipient of India’s technical cooperation programmes. India has given generous assistance in training while deputing experts and executing projects estimated to be worth over $1 billion in African countries. Besides, Indian engineers, doctors, accountants and teachers have become an integral part of the social fabric of many African countries, bolstering the popular goodwill India enjoys in the continent. Technical and financial collaborations between India and Africa have found concrete expression in a slew of empowering and enriching projects like the IT Park in Mauritius, the Entrepreneurship Training and Development Centre in Senegal, the Kofi Annan Centre for Excellence in IT in Ghana, the machine tools facility in Nigeria, the Small Industry Centre in Tanzania, the Hole-in-the-Wall IT training centres in various African countries, and the SME project in Zimbabwe. The Team-9 initiative is another emerging face of India’s diplomacy in the resource-rich West Africa. Put together, India has provided lines of credit worth over $1.5 billion to sub-Saharan Africa. India has also signed on as a fullfledged member of the Harare-based African Capacity Building Foundation (ACBF) with a contribution of $1 million for skill development and poverty alleviation programmes. While empowerment through concessional credit lines and capacity-building programmes is the keystone of India’s engagement with Africa, one can also sense new approaches and directions powered by expanding trade and ibya is located in North Africa on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea. It is bordered on the east by Egypt; on the south by Sudan, Chad, and Niger; and on the west by Algeria and Tunisia. It covers a total area of 1,759,540 square kilometers. Libya is mostly a desert country which saw invasions by Vandals, Byzantines, Arabs, Turks and more recently Italians before gaining independence in 1951. On December 24, 1951, Libya declared its independence as the United Kingdom of Libya. President: Colonel Muammar Gaddafi

Kenya

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ituated on the equator on Africa's east coast, Kenya is named after Mount Kenya. The country is also described as “the cradle of humanity”. It was the Arab traders who began frequenting the Kenya coast around the first century A.D. Then came the Portuguese to be followed by the English. Kenya attained independence from British rule in December 1963. Kenya got self-government and parliamentary democratic institutions. Jomo Kenyatta of the Kenya African National Union (KANU) became Kenya’s first Prime Minister. At Kenyatta’s death in 1978, Daniel arap Moi became President. In 1982 Kenya became officially a one-party state. However, by early 1992, several new parties are formed and multiparty elections are held. In 2002, Mwai Kibaki of the conservative Democratic Party (DO) became the country’s third president. Capital: Nairobi President: Mwai Kibaki Population: 36,913,721 Major languages: English, Kiswahili Ethnic groups: Kikuyu, Luhya, Luo, Kalenjin, Kamba, Kisii, Meru Major religions: Christian, Muslim Exports: Tea, Horticultural products, coffee, fish etc. Imports: Machinery and transportation equipment, petroleum products GDP: 6.3% (2007 est.), Currency: Kenyan shilling (KES) Radio: KBC, Metro FM, Coro FM, Capital FM etc.

Capital: Tripoli Population: 6.2 million Life expectancy: 76.88 years Major languages: Arabic, Italian and English Ethnic groups: Berber, Arab, and others Major religion: Islam Imports: $15.35 billion (2007 est.) Imports commodities: Machinery, semi-finished goods, food, transport equipment, consumer products GDP: 5.4% (2007 est.) Currency: Libyan Dinar (LYD)

February-April 2008

Libya

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Nigeria

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igeria, the biggest oil producer and the second-largest economy in Africa, is situated in equatorial West Africa. The nation has a southern coastline on the Gulf of Guinea, and has Benin to the west, Cameroon to the southeast, Chad to the northeast, and Niger to the north. British merchants were the first to establish a permanent presence in southern Yorubaland in Lagos and in the Niger Delta. In the mid 19th century the British formally colonised Nigeria. It became an independent nation on October 1, 1960. Following nearly 16 years of military rule, Nigeria adopted a new constitution in 1999. Nigeria now has an elected leadership. The new president, Musa Yar’adua, faces the task of rebuilding a petroleumbased economy. President: Umaru Yar’Adua Capital: Abuja Population: 148 million Life expectancy: 47.44 years Major languages: English, Hausa, Yoruba, Igbo, Fulani, etc. Ethnic groups: Hausa, Fulani, Yoruba, Igbo, Ijaw, Kanuri, Ibibio, Tiv, etc. Major religions: Christianity, Islam Exports: $61.81 billion (2007 est.) Export commodities: Petroleum and petroleum products, cocoa, rubber, etc. Imports: $30.35 billion (2007 est.) Import commodities: Machinery, chemicals, transport equipment, manufactured goods, food and cattle.

Uganda

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investment in recent years. The highly successful project partnership conclaves, organised by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and EXIM Bank and supported by the Ministry of External Affairs and the Ministry of Commerce, underscore the deepening economic content of the relationship. The conclave in April was a resounding success with over 600 African businessmen and officials discussing projects worth $10 billion with their Indian counterparts. The four such conclaves held so far have set the stage for a more robust economic partnership. Indian energy companies have also pitched their tents in Africa — the emerging global hub of oil that is luring nearly all major powers to African shores. ONGC Videsh Limited (OVL) has a substantial stake in Sudan’s Greater Nile Petroleum Operating Company with an investment over $1 billion. Efforts are on to intensify partnerships across the entire hydrocarbon chain in Nigeria, Angola, Mozambique, Egypt, Libya, Algeria and the oil-rich countries of West Africa. The economic drive is also reflected in India’s efforts to sign trade agreements with various African countries and with regional economic groupings. India has signed trade agreements with 29 African countries. A preferential trade agreement with the Southern African Customs Union (SACU) has been planned. New Delhi has also decided to set up a joint working group to explore the possibilities of signing a comprehensive economic cooperation agreement with the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA). As India emerges as a knowledge power, technology has become a defining motif of India’s quest for the transfor-

Senegal

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enegal, an agrarian country, is slightly smaller than South Dakota in size. The nation surrounds Gambia on three sides and is bordered on the north by Mauritania, on the east by Mali, and on the south by Guinea and Guinea-Bissau. The French colonies of Senegal and the French Sudan were merged in 1959 and granted independence as the Mali Federation in 1960. However, the union broke up a few months later. Senegal joined with Gambia to form the nominal confederation of Senegambia in 1982, but the union was dissolved in 1989. However, Senegal has been held up as

he Republic of Uganda is bordered on the west by Congo, on the north by Sudan, on the east by Kenya, and on the south by Tanzania and Rwanda.The colonial boundaries created by Britain to delimit Uganda grouped together a wide range of ethnic groups with different political systems and cultures. Uganda gained independence in 1962. The rule of Yoweri Museveni since 1986 has brought relative stability and economic growth to Uganda. Uganda has substantial natural resources, including fertile soils, regular rainfall, and sizable mineral deposits.

one of Africa’s model democracies. Senegal was ruled by a socialist party for 40 years until present President Abdoulaye Wade was elected in 2000. Senegal has a long history of participating in international peacekeeping. The money sent home by Senegalese living abroad is a key source of revenue. Capital: Dakar President: Abdoulaye Wade Population: 12.4 million (UN, 2007) Life expectancy: 56.69 years Major languages: French, Wolof, Pulaar, Jola, Mandinka Major religions: Christianity, Islam Mandinka, Soninke etc Exports: $1.587 billion (2007 est.) Imports: $3.253 billion (2007 est.) Imports: commodities: Food and beverages, capital goods, fuels etc. GDP: 4.6% (2007 est.), Currency: Communaute Financiere Africaine franc (XOF)

Capital: Kampala President: Yoweri Museveni Population: 30,262,610 Life expectancy: 51.75 years Major Languages: English, Ganda, Nilo-Saharan languages, Swahili, etc. Ethnic groups: Baganda, Banyakole, Basoga, Bakiga, Iteso, Langi, Acholi, etc. Major religions: Christianity, Islam Export commodities: Coffee, fish and fish products, tea, cotton, flowers, horticultural products, gold, etc. Currency: Ugandan shilling (UGX)

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A F R I C A mation of Africa. Leading IT firms like Satyam and Infosys have set up shop in different parts of the continent. But nothing symbolises the emerging face of IndoAfrican partnership more than the Pan-African e-Network that seeks to bridge the digital divide by bringing the benefits of tele-education and tele-medicine to 53 countries of the African Union. Put together, this broad array of diplomatic initiatives highlight the deepening political and economic content of the India-Africa relationship that is based on trust and a genuine desire to see each other grow and occupy its rightful place on the global high table. Most African countries and regional bodies like SADC and ECOWAS have heartily endorsed India’s candidature for permanent membership of the UN Security Council. India, too, has enthusiastically supported a place for Africa at the UN high table. But impressive as these achievements are, this is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of what India and Africa can do together bilaterally and combine their weight to influence the course of global affairs. Trade, technology and energy are set to be the new trinity that will guide the India-Africa partnership in the days to come. With their sense of shared history and emerging strengths, there are limitless possibilities for promoting cooperation on strategic and global issues like the UN reforms and the WTO negotiations. The idea of an India-Africa summit has been long in the making, and was perhaps waiting for the right moment to turn real. That long-awaited moment has now come.

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he Republic of South Africa is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean on the west and by the Indian Ocean on the south and east. Its neighbours are Namibia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Mozambique and Swaziland. Dutch traders and settlers landed at the southern tip of the modern-day South Africa in 1652 and established a stopover point on the spice route between the Netherlands and the East. The British arrived in the 18th century and took over the Dutch colony. In 1934, the country gained independence from Britain. In 1948, the National Party was voted to power. The first multi-racial elections in 1994 brought an end to apartheid and ushered in black majority rule. South Africa is an emerging market with abundant reserves of natural resources, and well-developed financial, legal, communications, energy, and transport sectors.

Capital: Pretoria (administrative) President: Thabo Mbeki Population: 43,997,828 Life expectancy: 49 years Major Languages: IsiZulu, IsiXhosa, Afrikaans, Sepedi, English, Setswana Religions: Christianity, Islam Ethnic groups: Black African, white, Indian/Asian (2001 census) Exports: $71.52 billion (2007 est.) Export commodities: Gold, diamonds, platinum, minerals, machinery, etc Imports: $76.59 billion (2007 est.) Import commodities: Machinery, chemicals, petroleum products, scientific instruments, etc GDP: 5% (2007 est.), currency: Rand

ambia, a landlocked country in south-central Africa, is about ten times larger than Texas. It is surrounded by Angola, Zaire, Tanzania, Malawi, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Botswana and Namibia. The territory of Northern Rhodesia was administered by the British South Africa Company (BSAC) from 1891 till it was taken over by Britain in 1923. During the 1920s and 1930s, advances in mining spurred development and immigration. The name was changed to Zambia after independence in 1964. Elections were held in 2001. President: Levy Mwanawasa

Tanzania

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anzania is in East Africa on the Indian Ocean. To the north are Uganda and Kenya; to the west, Burundi, Rwanda, and Congo; and to the south, Mozambique, Zambia, and Malawi. Its area is three times that of New Mexico. Shortly after achieving independence from Britain in the early 1960s, Tanganyika and Zanzibar merged to form the nation of Tanzania on April 26, 1964. One-party rule came to an end in 1995 with the first democratic elections held in the country since the 1970s. Zanzibar’s semi-autonomous status and popular opposition have led to two contentious elections since 1995, which the ruling party won despite international observers’ claims of voting irregularities. Capital: Dodoma (official), Dar es Salaam (commercial) President: Jakaya Kikwete Population: 39,384,223 Life expectancy: 50.71 years Major languages: Swahili, Kiunguja, English, Arabic Major religions: Christian, Muslim Ethnic groups: African, others Exports: Gold, coffee, cashewnuts, cotton Imports: Consumer goods, machinery equipment, industrial raw materials, crude oil, etc. GDP: 6.9% (2007 est.) Currency: Tanzanian shilling (TZS) Press: Daily News, Habari Leo, Uhuru, The Guardian, Daily Mail etc.

Capital: Lusaka Population: 11.9 million Major languages: English, Bemba, Kaonda, Lozi, Lunda, etc. Major religions: Christianity, Islam and Hinduism Ethnic groups: African, European Exports: $4.017 billion (2007 est.) Export commodities: Copper, cobalt, tobacco, flowers, cotton Imports: $2.993 billion (2007 est.) Import commodities: Machinery, petroleum products, fertiliser, foodstuffs, clothing, etc.

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Zambia

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Notes for a new India-Africa DIALOGUE Foreign policy and public diplomacy cannot be conducted purely in the realm of the state. In a globalising world, societies, communities and citizens should be made part of diplomacy to restore priority to local concerns, writes GIRIJESH PANT

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n a globalising world, relations among nations are no more exclusively steered by the state alone. Societies and citizens across continents are increasingly interacting and transacting in a public sphere beyond the borders. The rise of the globalscape and the debate and concerns in the emerging global public sphere are contributing in their own ways to the making of foreign policy agendas and foreign policy behaviour. The state is under pressure to redefine the scope and instruments of foreign policy. Public diplomacy is one such initiative where the state facilitates public debate to communicate with larger audiences and citizens, both domestic and overseas, to project and promote its policy objectives. India, with expanding stakes in a globalising world, is encountering issues and concerns of a universe larger than nation states. Its foreign policy engagement has to encompass a wide range of diverse interactions across societies. India, for instance, can-

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not visualise its trade and investment relations merely as a commercial project. It has to recognise that trade is embedded in society. It cannot overlook local concerns when making investment. The India-Africa Forum Summit needs to be used as an opportunity not merely to define Indo-Africa relations in quantitative terms, but as a normative project as well. It is essential that in visualising the future trajectory of IndiaAfrica relations, India uses an approach that is congruent with African aspirations. Africa today is placed at a juncture of high promise and critical aspirations. African natural resources have a high economic and strategic premium which the African leadership would like to leverage to their advantage. What is crucial is that the leverage is used to transform their extractive assets by sustainable value additions in a global production chain. This would require not merely hard bargaining for better terms of trade, but for a regime that contributes to capacity-building of the economy and society. In the emerging global economy where ICT-based knowl-

February-April 2008


A F R I C A edge systems are the key drivers of growth, Africa suffers from the disadvantage of inadequate physical infrastructure and shortage of skilled human resource. Africa, like many developing societies, faces the disjuncture of the market economy, capacity-building institutions and a fractious social sector. A foreign economic relations regime that contributes to a rise in export revenue but discourages the social sector cannot be economically, politically and socially sustainable. The discontent of such regimes would jeopardise the high promise and frustrate critical aspirations. The India-Africa Forum Summit might have been conceived out of geopolitical imperatives, but it cannot be consumed by platitudes. Statesmen from Africa and India could take this as a platform to think differently about the challenges emerging from a globalising world. The present discourse on global affairs, be it on environment, terrorism or market fundamentals, ignores the sensitivities and the aspirations of the people of this part of the globe. Africa needs to be visualised as a land of opportunities, not as a ‘lost continent’. Africa is not a continent of malaria, HIV, drug-trafficking or wildlife alone. Such portrayal by the global media of the African and Asian continents has affected the global engagement of these regions in the past. It is heartening that the context is changing. Africa is moving and so are Asian countries like India. What is most significant is that the processes of change have created new complementarities, which is reflected in the rising volumes of trade and investment. While the summit ought to work to expand the emerging economic opportunities, it needs to work for an India-Africa vision that widens the agenda of mutual interaction among diverse segments of societies and institutions, including educational institutions, non-governmental organisations, the arts, music, literature, and cinema besides businesses and local governments. In the emerging global knowledge space, ideas and creativity are going to be the key drivers of growth. Ideas could construct a context for conflict or harmony. Since the end of the Cold War, the global ambience has been drifting towards conflict. The rise of global terror and the war against terror epitomise the strength of ideas, creating a high sense of insecurity across the globe. Ironically, the victims of this construct are India and countries from Africa. Interventions on the pretext of security are sharpening local discontents and jeopardising the prospects of peace. Such interventions could be deterred only if societies are empowered. The summit thus ought to look into the processes of mutual empowerment. This would mean taking India-Africa relations to areas where interaction is the lowest, i.e., engagement at the community level. In simple terms, it means to promote channels of communication of ideas among the people, in general, and the thinking communities, in particular. The state can create enabling conditions to facilitate flows of intellectual capital — besides financial capital. A bold, innovative and imaginative initiative is required to put in place institutional frameworks to pool and share the processes of creativity. Indian and African leaders could consider the creation of ‘Special Knowledge Processing Zones’ as an Afro-Asian site for promoting focused activities for knowledge creation by

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developing facilities for training of manpower, cooperative platforms for research and development, creating joint incubators, sharing infrastructure and intensive engagement of scientists and academia. The ICT revolution provides the possibilities of such endeavour without high transaction costs. A breakthrough could be made by India by proposing such zones in select countries. These knowledge zones need not be bilateral in nature. India could think in terms of creating a stateof-the-art technology centre in a country where African manpower is trained, and scientists from India, Africa and other Asian countries could be collectively engaged in research and the technology is patented. What will make this knowledge different is that its agenda will primarily address local rather than global issues. The idea is that these knowledge centres would be embedded in societal needs. Further, to ensure these projects are viable, they could be rooted in public-private partnerships. In IT, Indian companies have carved a niche for themselves. A partnership to create a Silicon Valley in Africa could be a project worth pondering. Leading Indian institutions of learning could collaborate with African institutions by conferring joint degrees. This will not only add to capacitybuilding but also provide a brand name that would add to the employability of African students in global companies. Similarly, with the Indian health sector coming of age, ‘Special Health Care Zones’ could also be visualised. This could be a public-private partnership initiative. The need for strengthening the social sector comes to the fore because experience shows that neo-liberal economic regimes tend to push it to the margins. In a globalising world when the state facilitates economic flows, the social sector too needs to be part of the mainstream of development, hence the need for an agenda of cooperation in foreign policy objectives. Afro-Asian bonhomie based on a rising Asia, India and China provides new confidence to expand the frontiers of engagement at all levels to contest stereotypes. It is time that Asia and Africa together address some thorny issues and put them in perspective. The first question is how are regional concerns defined and who defines them? It is here that the craft of public diplomacy demands imaginative thinking. These fundamental questions are disturbing public minds and the leadership has to encourage bringing them into the public domain. Identity issues are erupting in all societies thanks to globalisation. What is necessary is that identity issues are not allowed to aggravate and be hijacked by extremist ideology or external interventions. Similarly, the threat-security debate cannot be imposed upon societies from outside — they have to be empowered to negotiate with these searching questions. In the globalising world such issues are no more national in nature and cannot be addressed in isolation either. The spillover from across borders is well evident. In the absence of public engagement, parochial considerations can prevail, leading to tensions and conflicts. The summit may not be expected to address such issues directly but could make it part of the Afro-Asian dialogue. It is from these public dialogues across borders that imaginative ways of conflict resolution would emerge. This will make foreign policy agendas innovative and relevant. ■

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‘From yesterday to TOMORROW’ India’s Minister of Local Government, Youth Affairs and Sports, MANI SHANKAR AIYAR, speaks about India’s enduring emotional and intellectual bonds with Africa that go back to the heady times of the anti-colonial struggle.

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am a profound believer in the value and importance of friendship between India and Africa, and the many, many lessons we in India have to learn from the African experience. The inspiration for my theme today, which is not quite the title that has been misprinted in your invitation card, is: ‘India and Africa — From Yesterday to Tomorrow’. It derives in substantial measure from a phrase that I came across

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in a speech delivered by Jawaharlal Nehru, the hero of my generation and I think the hero of many Indians, when he delivered the inaugural address to African Students Congress, here in Delhi, on 26th December, 1953; what he then said was: “It is far better to look at the present, and even more so to the future, than to go back to the past all the time.” He didn’t object to going back to the past. His objection was going back to the past all the time. And, I do not believe that we can fulfil his injunction of looking at the present and even more so at the future unless we first take stock of the past and ensure continuity between the past, present and the future. So, I give myself the liberty of going back to the past, but not through all the time at my disposal. Panditji’s remark, which I have just quoted to you, came in the context of a perception which informed his thinking about Africa which he uttered in the following words in the same address; he said: “Probably no part of the earth’s surface has suffered more in the last two or three hundred years from the incursions of outsiders than Africa.” For us to understand what was the agony in the Indian heart at seeing the suffering of the African people, we probably have to go back to those indentured labourers, most of whom were illiterate and who suffered the first shock of seeing how the African people were treated in South Africa and other parts of Africa. But, because they were unlettered, we don’t, as far as I know, have written records of how they reacted to the horror they saw. But, there was a young man, who was only 23 years old, who landed in Durban, in 1893, Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi. And he articulated, what I think must have been the feelings of generations of Indians who had preceded him in the African continent. Gandhiji wrote: “When I went to South Africa (1893), I knew nothing about that country. Yet, within seven days of my reaching there, I found that I had to deal with a situation too terrible for words. I discovered that as a man and an Indian I had no rights. More correctly, I discovered that I had no rights as a man because I was an Indian.” It is the shock of this discovery that converted the shy, reticent, introspective and awkward young man into a national leader long before he was 30. When we wonder whether a 40year-old Congressman should became President of the party,

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we should remember that the freedom movement germinated in the mind of a young boy, who was not even 25 when he came to be accepted as the leader of the freedom struggle, at least by the Indians in South Africa. All of us know that the horror he had experienced got translated into a firm resolve to end all injustice when he was thrown out of a railway train at Pietermaritzburg, for having the temerity to buy a first class ticket and travel in the same compartment as a white man. When the white man protested to the guard at Gandhiji’s presence, the porter ordered Gandhi off the train. Remember, this is the boy who was only 23 or 24 years old. And when he was thrown upon the railway platform, he sat the whole night on that platform on a wooden bench. He experienced many human emotions: There was fear, there was humiliation, and, ultimately, as the day dawned, there was a resolve, and it was that resolve on that railway station which created the greatest man of the 20th century and, possibly, the greatest man that humanity has ever known. But, the story I have just told is a very well known story and an often-repeated story. What is little realised, perhaps because it has never been adequately emphasised, is that it was at a railway platform of South Africa that Gandhiji learnt how to translate his resolve to stand up to injustice into a plan of action. That was when he found that when the humble railway porters in South Africa were insulted by the racist white men, these porters would salute the white passengers who had insulted them and say, “My brother, God will forgive you your rudeness.” It was there that in Gandhiji’s mind germinated the idea that you can be generous towards the culprit. This is the beginning of satyagraha of the individual. So, I would like to pay my tribute to those humble railway porters in Africa who were responsible for the ethical and strategic content of our free-

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dom struggle. The story of Gandhi in South Africa is too well known to bear repetition and I do not want to dwell too much on the past. There is another passage from his story from My Experiments with Truth of what it was that made Gandhiji recoil from those who were apparently engaged in missionary activities in Africa. He writes: “I witnessed some of the horrors that were perpetrated on the Zulus during the Zulu rebellion. Because one man, Bambatta, their chief, had refused to pay the tax, the whole race was made to suffer. I was in charge of the ambulance corps. I shall never forget the lacerated backs of the Zulus who had received stripes and were brought to us for nursing because no white nurse was prepared to look after them. Yet, those who perpetrated all these cruelties called themselves Christians. They were educated and better dressed than the Zulus, but not their moral superior.” And, thus, I think, it came about that in Africa, then divided between several racial groups, and about half a century later coming to suffer institutional humiliation and insults, of having this translated into the law and system of governance called “apartheid”, that the Indian mind and the African mind began to come together in a common quest for freedom. But, the problem was that, here in India we knew very little, next to nothing, about Africa. And so, when Jawharlal Nehru was imprisoned and his daughter was taking lessons from him, he wrote to her a series of letters by way of educating her, and incidentally himself, about history; these letters are collected in the renowned book, Glimpses of World History. Jawaharlal Nehru confesses, “Unfortunately, not many are acquainted with the past of Africa. I confess that my own knowledge was largely limited to the recent two to three hundred years. Gradually, I learnt something more of its previous history and found, as I expected, that that history was a rich history, rich in cultural achievements, rich in political

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organisation and rich in forms of democracy.” So, it is hardly between 1914-1918. And, the betrayal in Abyssinia was going surprising, when, in 1927, he attended the ‘International to plunge the whole of the Western world, and with it the rest Congress against Colonial Oppression and Imperialism’ in of the world, into the terrible horrors of the Second World Brussels, he particularly sought out the South African dele- War. This was preceded by what was happening in Germany, gates. Because this little nugget of information has been rele- which in many ways still haunts the European civilisation and gated to the footnotes of the history books, I think it is worth the people, the Jewish people being targeted by a mad man retrieving and reminding the audience that the first official who had the approbation and the approval of his people and contact between the African liberation movement and the the support of the vast majority of the establishment in the Indian National Congress took place neither in Africa nor in countries around Europe. It was truly a time when the last rays India, but in the heart of Europe! Indeed, it is the city which of civilisation were illuminating the Western sky. Taking this is the headquarters of the European Union. He met there as a theme, Rabindranath Tagore wrote: Josiah Gumede, President of the African National Congress; While the last rays of Civilisation also, J.A. Laguma, who was a coloured leader; and a White still illumine your sky, trade unionist, D. Cobarine. Perhaps And before the approaching darkness significantly, and this is something Quite envelopes your world, Beg of Lady worth investigating, there didn’t Africa appear to be an Indian in the South Her forgiveness. African delegation that went to this In the midst of this clamorous cacophony international congress. of violence Jawaharlal Nehru came back impasLet “Forgive us” be sioned, angry about what he had seen Your sacred word of parting. and learnt. This experience placed the Indian freedom struggle within the Part from them they did have to. larger canvas of the freedom struggle The parting began in India. In India, of all the oppressed people around the on the eve of our becoming indepenworld, including Africa. dent, in 1946, Jawaharlal Nehru and In a report to the Indian National several of his colleagues were inductCongress on the meeting in Brussels, If Asia is to look towards ed into an Interim Cabinet of which Nehru wrote that in the British he was the Vice President and also resurgence, then this Empire, “We see colour and racial held the portfolio of External Affairs. continent must take its In what was, perhaps, the most signifprejudice and the doctrine that the white man must be supreme even in place at the same level at icant foreign policy decision of the countries where he forms a small which it was till 300 years Government of India and of Nehru, minority. South Africa offers the most although strictly speaking he was still flagrant example of this. In Kenya and ago, i.e., at the vanguard to be in the government, he imposed the adjacent territories it is now prosanctions on South Africa. He broke of the advancement of posed to create a new federation or human civilisation. This diplomatic relations with South Africa dominion with all the powers in the and, of course, there was no question cannot even begin until of having military ties with Pretoria. hands of a few white settlers, who can do what they will do to a large numHe did this long before sanctions Asia learns from the ber of Indians and overwhelming became a common word in our African experience. African population. Can India as a state vocabulary or before the United associate itself with this group and be Nations began thinking about sanca party to the colour bar legislation and the exploitation and tions. And, certainly, before individual countries around the humiliation of her own sons and the races of Africa?” world decided it was a legitimate form of diplomatic protest. This spirit got reflected in its true horror when Italy invadThe price we had to pay was pretty considerable because ed Abyssinia, now called Ethiopia, and the League of Nations South Africa was among our most important trading partners, did nothing about Mussolini’s clear transgression of the largely because of the Indian trading community that had Covenant of the League. That compounded having done been, by and large, indentured and taken there, and was folnothing over Japanese incursions in Manchuria. lowed by a few tradesmen and other professionals. But, this Rabindranath Tagore, our national poet, reacted to the inva- was the price not only was India willing to pay, it was also the sion of Ethiopia, so-called Abyssinia, by the Italians, with a price that Indians in South Africa were ready to pay. poem addressed to the entire West, to those who had made At that time, the African National Congress and, in particimperialism their mission. It is such a beautiful poem that I ular its Youth League, had considerable reservations over any want to share with you! Please remember when he wrote it: kind of partnership between the Africans and Indians in South He wrote it as the League of Nations was betraying the pur- Africa, and there was a belief, fostered somewhat assiduously poses for which the “war to end all wars” had been fought, by the local authorities, the ruling authorities, that apartheid

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A F R I C A meant every racial group had to live separately. So, there is no real question of collaboration between the Indian and African communities: Each community was going to find its own destiny separate from the other community, that is what the word “apartheid” means. Thus, South Africa became a country of separate communities — one dominant, the others subordinate, instead of being a nation in which all the inhabitants lived and worked together. This is 1946, and Nelson Mandela , a very young member of the Youth League, reports in his autobiography Long Walk to Freedom, I think it is worth listening to Mandela’s voice on the rather agonised question of the relationship between the Indian community and the African community in South Africa, and, by extension, between India and Africa at the start of our journey as an independent nation. In 1946, Nelson Mandela said: “We in the Youth League and the African National Congress witnessed the Indian people register an extraordinary protest against the colour operation in a way Africans and the ANC had not. Ismail Meer and J.N.Singh suspended their studies, said goodbye to their families and went to prison. Ahmed Kathrada, who was still a high school student, did the same thing. I often visited the home of Amina Pahad for lunch, and then, suddenly this charming woman put aside her apron and went to jail for her beliefs. If I had once questioned the willingness of the Indian community to protest against oppression, I no longer could do so. “The Indian campaign became a model for the type of protest that we in the Youth League were calling for. It inspired a spirit of defiance and radicalism among people, (and) broke the fear of prison. They reminded us that the freedom struggle was not merely a question of making speeches, holding meetings, passing resolutions and sending deputations, but of meticulous organisation, militant mass action and, above all, the willingness to suffer and sacrifice.” I cannot think of a higher tribute to the role of the Indian community in the African liberation struggle than these generous words. Mandela then went on to describe how, based on the lessons learnt from Indians, the ANC and, particularly, the Youth League, brought Africans and the Indians together in what, in 1952, was called the “Defiance Campaign”. Mandela writes: “The government saw the campaign as a threat to its security and its policy of apartheid. They were perturbed by the growing partnership between Africans and Indians. Apartheid was designed to divide racial groups and we showed that different groups could work together. The prospect of a united front between Africans and Indians, between moderates and radicals, greatly worried them.” Jawaharlal Nehru in his address at the Asian Relations Conference in Delhi in March-April 1947, said: “We of Asia have a special responsibility to the people of Africa. We must help them to their rightful place in the human family.” I think that sums up the African policy of the new government which took office in 1947. And, if any

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further clarification were needed, then, at the International Conference on Peace and Empire, held in London, in 1948, Panditji added: “The people of Africa deserve our special attention.” However, there was a continuing problem. It looked as if the winds of change would finally blow and that Africa and African nations would, sooner rather than later, become independent. The question then arose: What should the Indians in Africa be doing? And, what relationship would India have with the Indian community in Africa, and whether this could be at the expense of the relationship India wished to cultivate with the Africans and Africa? Jawaharlal Nehru, at the same London conference, said: “I think Indians in Africa or elsewhere can be useful members of the community. But only on this basis do we welcome their remaining there — that the interests of the people of Africa are always placed first.” Now, this was not very welcome to all elements of the Indian community residing in different African countries. Many of them had no other homes. Many of them had suffered in the most terrible ways when, for example, laying railways in Kenya. The lion as the symbol of danger in Indian literature comes entirely from the experience of Indian labourers working on railways going through the forests in Africa when many of them were attacked and killed by these ferocious animals. It was also true that sections of the Indian community, those who belonged to the civil services and those who were in the professions, found themselves wondering what their future would be in an Africa that was struggling with itself. There was also the unspoken divide between the Indians, by and large, and Africans, by and large, on the role of violence in the struggle for liberation. Mandela himself took the position that he agreed with Gandhi’s philosophy of non-violence not as a moral principle but as an appropriate strategy. However, he found that the strategy of non-violence was not working; he was not prepared to abjure use of violence purely on the ground of moral principle.

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So, it was in this rather complicated situation that a new Africa was about to dawn. There was a public meeting held in Delhi on 13th April, 1953, where Jawaharlal Nehru made a statement which became highly controversial within the Indian community in Africa. This was with regard to the presence of the Mau Mau in Kenya, with Jomo Kenyata emerging as a major leader of the liberation struggle. Nehru said: “India’s sympathies are with the people of Kenya. India has already made it clear that no Indian should remain there against the wishes of the African people. No Indian should remain there either to harm the African people or to exploit them. We do not want any people to sit on the backs of the African people. The Indian people can help Africans only as guests of the Africans in the land of the Africans.” This very strong position was contested by Indians living in Africa. They said: “We have no land other than the land of Africa. We did not come yesterday and we often did not come of our own volition.” At this stage, Indians had been in Africa over a hundred and fifty years. They were asking what their place would be in the new Africa. Jawaharlal Nehru made it clear that our relationship with Africa took precedence over our relationship with the Indians. We would support them in Africa only to the extent that Indians in Africa became good Africans. If a conflict arose between the African view of the Indians and Indian view of how they should be conducting themselves, well, there was a homeland here in India to which these Indians could return; but, we were not going to allow our ethnic bonds with Indians in Africa to take precedence over the imperatives of an outstanding relationship between India and the emerging Africa. This question has gone through many, many convoluted phases over the last 50 years, but it is not, I think, a significant or major problem any more. At this time, an English teacher, Peter Wright, who belonged to the Kenyan Civil Service and was a friend of Jomo Kenyata, and had been expelled by the British in Kenya for opposition

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to British colonial rule, came to India to start a Department of African Studies in Delhi University on the recommendation of High Commissioner Apa Pant. When he arrived in India, he called on the Prime Minister. This was 19th May, 1955. And as a civil servant myself and now a Minister, I’m quite amazed that the Prime Minister of India should not have had some subordinate to take notes of what was discussed and have them circulated to all and sundry. Instead, he himself, Jawaharlal Nehru himself, not only dictated the notes, but, having ordered that they should be circulated to several different authorities, also had a copy sent to his daughter, Indira Gandhi. That was part of her education and the preparation she had for becoming the Prime Minister of India. It is remarkable, really remarkable, that he found the time to provide six pages of dictation! There are a few phrases from these notes which I want to share with you because I think these phrases reflect the thinking of Jawaharlal Nehru. They are addressed really to Indians here and how they should deal with African students who come to study in India. He quotes Peter Wright as saying that what is required here in India, above all, is for the African point of view to be understood and appreciated. Panditji then wrote: “I entirely agree with him about this approach. We have to realise, first of all, that there is a definite African point of view, an African background of thought and social organisation, an African culture deep rooted in this background. “The history of Africa is the story of tragedy and a long continued agony. We have to bear this in mind and remember that the whole world, and more particularly, the Europeans and Americans, have a heavy debt to pay to Africans for the past misdeeds. “We have, therefore, to go out of our way to understand and be receptive to Africans. It is only then that we can gain their confidence and both learn something from them and teach them something. “I am told that some African students have started an African bureau in Delhi. I think that it is good for these Africans students to have this means of self-expression. Therefore, this should be helped and encouraged.” He ended by saying: “I have no doubt that Africa is going to play an important part in world affairs. Africa is our neighbour. The sooner we try to understand the real Africa the better it would be for us as well as for Africa.” We need to look back over the last 50 years to see to what extent we have succeeded in implementing Nehru’s direction. I don’t think we have succeeded as much as we ought to have. What we were asked to do with respect to Africa remains an incomplete agenda. I must share with you the words with which Jawaharlal Nehru welcomed the beginning of liberation in Africa, which

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A F R I C A was signalled by the independence of Ghana and Nigeria. He said to the African Students Association here in Delhi on 6th March, 1957: “Africa has had a peculiarly tragic history for hundreds of years. And to see Africa turn its face towards dawn after the dark is, indeed, something exhilarating.” We shared in that exhilaration. Jawaharlal Nehru also welcomed the founding of the Organisation of African Unity (OAU), set up just a year before his death. Under the leadership of Lal Bahadur Shastri and later of Indira Gandhi, we started the initial cultivation of our relationship with a variety of African nations. However, perhaps, from the decades of the 1980s, the Prime Minister who was most deeply involved with the Africa of today, the Africa emerging from history, was Rajiv Gandhi. It was my privilege to travel with Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi to nearly all the African countries. Africa was at the top of his agenda. At meetings of the Commonwealth, he battled with Margaret Thatcher on behalf of Africa, and separately with the United States in the United Nations, and in the mobilisation of the Non-Alignment Movement. By swinging through Africa to Tanzania, Zimbabwe and Angola, and going on to Harare for the NAM Summit; articulating his solidarity with South Africa, and becoming the most articulate spokesman for Africa the Commonwealth had, that NAM had, that the United Nations had, on the question of ending invasion, colonialism, and apartheid in Africa, Rajiv Gandhi has earned his permanent place in the heart of Africans. It was at the NAM summit in Harare, that I had my brief 15 seconds of brush with fame. Rajiv Gandhi had insisted on a special meeting in a close-door room with his colleagues at the NAM Summit to discuss at that highest level and approve an idea that would demonstrate in some practical manner what the countries of the NAM, the countries of the South, notwithstanding their status as developing countries, could make some gesture towards ending the unfolding tragedy in Africa. As he rushed towards the meeting, he brushed past me in the delegates’ lobby and said to me, “Think up a name for the Fund,” and went into the meeting. I sat outside, juggling with possible names to give to this Fund. And I came with the acronym ‘AFRICA’: That acronym didn’t stand for the name of the continent; it had to be spelt out in capital letters all the way, and it stood for: “Action For Resisting Invasion, Colonialism and Apartheid (AFRICA).” When he came out of that meeting, Rajiv asked me, “Have you thought of something?” I said, “We should call it AFRICA Fund.” He said, “Can you not think of something more imaginative?” I said, “I mean the acronym, ‘AFRICA’, which stands for: Action For Resisting Invasion, Colonialism and Apartheid.” He said, “Good show”, and went back into the room and that’s how the ‘AFRICA Fund’ got its name. Several months later, when Rajiv Gandhi presented in New Delhi the report of the AFRICA Fund committee, this is how he described the AFRICA Fund: “The AFRICA Fund is a fund to assist those who struggle — whose struggle is our struggle. It is a Fund to finish apartheid. It is a Fund to forestall bloodshed. It is a Fund for Peace. It is a Fund for the triumph of the human spirit.” That Fund made a small contribution — ending invasion,

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the invasion of Mozambique; ending colonialism, which was then rampant in Namibia; and of ending apartheid in South Africa. That is how it came about that when Rajiv Gandhi ceased to be the Prime Minister, when he was defeated in elections in 1989, and Namibia became free the following year, a very special invitation was sent to the Leader of the Opposition, along with the Prime Minister of India who was then V.P. Singh, at the freedom celebrations in Namibia: A great and very generous tribute to India by the last bastion of colonialism for the contribution that we had made to end this dreadful phenomenon which had made Africa a hunting ground for white hunters, not merely your jungles for wild animals, but your countries for human beings. So, I think, it is with Rajiv Gandhi that we come in a sense to the climax of India’s relationship with Africa in the past. I cannot really leave this without one last quotation: It is the message that Rajiv Gandhi sent to the African National Congress on the occasion of the 75th anniversary of its founding, when Nelson Mandela was still in jail; Rajiv wrote: “The end of apartheid is in sight. It survives on a lung machine furnished by its powerful economic and military benefactors. Let them remember the lesson they were taught by Mahatma Gandhi, that no power is greater than the power of the soul. The victory of the soul of South Africa is assured. The annihilation of the atavism of apartheid is certain.” We now arrive at what we need to do in the present for the future. We had built up a relationship with Africa over the better part of the century on the basis of the ground reality of our country being a colonised country and yours being a colonised continent; on the perception that freedom is indivisible and, therefore, in no way could a country like India consider itself free without all countries which were in thrall to colonialism also being liberated from colonialism. That is why freedom movements in every part of the world, whether it was in Africa, in West Asia, China, in Latin America, all became part and parcel of the Indian freedom movement. But, we cannot just go on harping on the past. We now have an Africa which is politically entirely liberated. We have an India which has been liberated for sixty years or more. There are other forms of exploitation that we have encountered, that we have learned to live with, and that we have overcome. There are divisions that really belong to the past and certainly have no place in the future of any of the continents in the world. No continent is more divided than Asia. And, we are divided largely because of quarrels created by others: These are not our own quarrels; but, we have become the victims of these quarrels. If Asia is to look towards resurgence, then this continent must take its place at the same level at which it was till 300 years ago, i.e., at the vanguard of the advancement of human civilisation. This cannot even begin until Asia learns from the African experience. It was an astonishing act of political will that even before most of Africa was politically free, the OAU came to be established 43 years ago. And we, 43 years later, do not have an Organisation of Asian Unity! To set up the OAU and then to progress from that to an African Union is a political achieve-

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ment which is truly unparalleled. We have not been able to do it in South Asia let alone in all of Asia. Most Indians would regard Central Asia as being more alien than they would feel in London or in San Francisco. There isn’t even the beginning of an Asian Economic Cooperation at a continental level. There are a number of regional initiatives which could one day contribute to a panAsia. But, having liberated ourselves decades before Africa was liberated, we still do not have the wisdom of Africa. It is in the evolution of the Organisation of African Unity to the African Union that we have a major lesson to learn and a major opportunity to take advantage of. We have to learn how to deal with the African Union in addition to dealing with the member-states of the African Union on a bilateral basis. If I am permitted to return to my personal reminiscences, my career as a diplomat began in Brussels when the European Community consisted of only six member-states. Our relationship with these six member-states was far more important than our relationship with the European Community. We have now grown to the stage where our primary relationship is with the European Union, and it is through that relationship that we have built up our ties with the 25 more states that now constitute the European Union. We, therefore, have a golden opportunity, not created by ourselves but presented to us by you, of availing of the African Union and its different initiatives. We have the honour of being nominated as a dialogue-partner of the African Union. If we are to take full advantage of the governmental arrangement of being a dialogue-partner with the African Union, then the second thing that India needs to do, and to do so in collaboration especially with Your Excellencies in your present capacity as Heads of Mission accredited to India, is to set up a Track II. We have Track II with nations like Pakistan and Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. But, we don’t really have a well-oiled Track II mechanism with African countries as a whole, not even with most countries of Africa. You cannot have the India-Africa relationship based upon a Mission in Pretoria or another one in Dar-es-Salaam. What we need is to recognise that the totality of Africa has to be covered along with ties with different regions of Africa or with different member-states. Setting up this arrangement can be a collective effort of the African Heads of Mission, which I would urge you to pursue vigorously. We have in our country for over 40 years, Indian intellectuals who understand Africa and have made it their lifetime mission to cultivate this knowledge. I refer here to Hari Sharan Chhabra. It is because of him that I, as a probationer of the Indian Foreign Service, first started looking at Africa, and I wrote one of my two essays for the Foreign Service on Africa. One was on the Algerian freedom struggle, the other was on Vietnam. Those were perhaps the most defining events of our life from boyhood to adulthood. People like Hari Sharan Chhabra are there in India. We have a whole panoply now — experts on Africa such as Prof. Ajay Dubey; his colleague, Dr. Bina Sharma; Dr. J.P. Sharma, Dr. Singh, people whom I have spoken to this morning, who could easily catalyse a dialogue

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at people-to-people level. The second thing I would derive from the existence of the African Union is a suggestion that I would throw out to all of you to consider: We also need to take advantage of the economic initiatives that have been taken at the pan-African level through the African Union. There are a number of sectors in which the India-Africa relationship has already begun to mature but still needs to come to full flower: The obvious sectors are — agriculture and small industries; the less obvious but now increasingly important areas are the knowledge sector, the communications sector, cyber space, and, above all, the area of energy. In the quest for India’s energy security, Africa is an indispensable partner. That is why, when I was Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas, and I had as my chief lieutenant, Mr. Talmiz Ahmad , who is now presiding over this function, we worked towards setting up a grid of oil and gas pipelines in Africa; increasingly involved ourselves with Libya; we looked to South Africa for conversion of coal into oil; and we salivated in anticipation at what could be available to India off the shores of Nigeria, off the shores of Equatorial Guinea, the two Congos, areas of Africa that we hardly know. When Indians talk of Africa, I think their mind can concentrate on South Africa and the East African countries; with them we are familiar. It extends now into Sudan. We have known English-speaking Africa over many decades. Now, we are increasingly familiar with Arabic-speaking Africa. Francophone is almost a blind spot, and India is a blind spot for Francophone Africa. We should have a meaningful relationship with Francophone Africa and must give a new thrust to this area in developing our ties. We need to cultivate a broad-spectrum relationship with all of Africa. It is necessary for us to broaden our horizon, to get out of the colonial mindset. The Arabic-speaking Africans are the most polyglot people in the world: They either speak excellent English or excellent French; or, as in case of the Ambassador of Tunisia, who speaks excellent English and excellent French, and then goes home and tells jokes in excellent Arabic! I would seek a relationship between India and the African Union that goes beyond the bilateral relationship with individual member-states of the Union, a relationship that does not recognise the colonial distinction between North Africa and sub-Saharan Africa. But, we recognise the three broad linguistic regions — an Africa where English is the principal language, an Africa where Arabic is the principal language, and an Africa where French is the principal language. Swahili is a language that is spoken across many parts of Africa, and it should be very easy for Indians to learn this language. My daughter, who has learnt it, tells me that 30 percent of the vocabulary of Swahili is derived from Arabic. Tragically, there are not many Swahili-speaking Indians. Notwithstanding the tribute Nelson Mandela has paid to his Indian colleagues, the general perception in India and in Africa is that Indians were not much involved with the liberation movements in Africa. Yet, recent studies would appear

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to indicate that this is an area which is crying out for much was never merely to keep away from the two blocs; it was more detailed research. I was flipping through the index of because we had an alternative vision of the kind of world we Nelson Mandela’s autobiography, and felt immense pride to wished to live in. This remains as valid today as when the come across a whole spectrum of Indian names. That is a trea- movement was founded. sure trove which reveals that India and Indians were deeply To underline my point, I go back to what Prime Minister involved in the freedom movement in Africa. Rajiv Gandhi, when handing over the Chairmanship of NAM I understand from my more reliable source, my daughter to Mr. Robert Mugabe in Harare, in September 1986, said: who studies in Harvard, that among them was the prominent “Non-alignment matters to the world because we are the conMakhan Singh, the trade unionist who was apparently the science keepers of humanity. oldest and the longest-serving trade unionist in the freedom “We are the voice of sanity. We are the refuge of the small movement of Kenya; Pio Gama Pinto and Fitz D’Souza, who states in an insecure world. We are the custodians of freedom. were of Goan origin; there was Amba Patel, a close associate We offer co-existence, not co-destruction. We offer consenof Jomo Kenyata; and the two Indians who went to Africa at sus not confrontation. We reject all domination and seek none the time of British rule in Kenya — Diwan Chaman Lal who ourselves. We pledge to all a word free from fear, free from was a lawyer, sent by Jawaharlal Nehru to defend Jomo hatred, free from want.” Kenyata, and the High Commissioner, the colourful Apa Pant; Here there is not a single word about two blocs. Whether he, too, became a part and parcel of the African liberation the blocs existed then or do not exist now is irrelevant to the movement. purpose of NAM. It is only in the NAM, with India, Africa All these people, as also members of the business commu- and Latin America, that the whole of the so-called developing nity, and those who went deep South has come together. into the jungles and became so There are a number of sectors in I think it is essential to remind completely indigenised that which the India-Africa relationship ourselves, especially on the eve they had no contact at all with of the Havana summit, that the India or with Pakistan, I do has already begun to mature but philosophy of NAM, if not its think we need to research their still needs to flower: The obvious particular nomenclature, role in Africa as historians, as sectors are agriculture and small remains not only as relevant as social anthropologists, and as it ever was, but it has become industries; the less obvious but even more relevant in a world economists. But, most important is the now increasingly important areas that refuses to be dominated by political field: In the global a single bloc. are the knowledge sector, order, India and Africa really This is the world we want: A the communications sector, come together; they can world free from fear, free from meaningfully stay together cyberspace, and, above all, the hatred, and free from war. Is only through the Non-aligned area of energy. In the quest for there any other organisation Movement. which is pledged to these objecIndia’s energy security, Africa As we prepare for the NAM tives? So, if we move away from Summit in Havana in a few NAM, we also endanger Latin is an indispensable partner. months from now, I am conAmerican, Asian and African scious we are in a cynical solidarity. world, and a large section of the Indian elite have grown comIf we are to preserve and consolidate our independence, our pletely cynical about the NAM. It is necessary to remind our- freedom and our sovereignty, and become one in an ecoselves what NAM actually does. It doesn’t stand for equidis- nomic sense, there is no alternative to hanging together. For, tance between two blocs. if we do not hang together, there are people who want to hang Its name was derived from a world order where alignment us. was the dominant theme, and it brought together Asians and So, the basis of the relationship with the African Union, in Africans in such large numbers that the Afro-Asian movement the absence of a Asian Union, can only be through a moveheld in Bandung got subsumed into NAM. ment which was tried and tested by us. African countries came to constitute the vast majority of We mean solidarity between Asia and Africa, and between NAM countries very quickly by the Second Summit, and so Asia, Africa and Latin America, and therefore solidarity of remain to this day. those persons who are emerging into the 21st century to make The fundamental argument for deprecating the NAM phi- it their 21st century. losophy and sidelining this movement is that, since the world I plead, therefore, that NAM be resurrected as a principal no longer consists of two blocs, it makes no sense to have a forum for Asia, Africa and Latin America, to bring about a foreign policy which says it aligns with neither bloc. I think world of their choice, instead of having to submit to a world the answer to that is that “NAM” was perhaps the appropri- order that is not of their choice. ■ ate name for the movement then but it has now become a (Mani Shankar Aiyar’s article is based on the speech he gave Jurassic park. However, the reason for our coming together at the Africa Day function two years ago in New Delhi.)

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Revisiting India’s FOREIGN policy in Africa On the historic occasion of the first-ever India-Africa Forum Summit, it is only fitting to reexamine India’s foreign policy towards Africa and reflect upon ways to revitalise it in the years ahead, says K. MATHEWS

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n recent years, India and China have attracted intense global attention for their phenomenal growth stories and rising influence in international affairs. India has pursued an independent foreign policy, rooted in its commitment to the ideals of non-alignment and non-intervention, in different regions of the world. India’s historical and cultural ties with Africa go back centuries, but the realities of the 21st century world demand a refocusing and re-orientation of India’s Africa policy. Given the crucial role of Africa in any plan to reform the UN and its rising economic clout, there is a need for a commensurate enhancement of India’s influence in the continent. On the historic occasion of the first-ever IndiaAfrica Summit on April 8 to 9, 2008 in New Delhi, it is only fitting to re-examine India’s foreign policy in Africa and reflect upon ways to revitalise it in the years ahead. The return of Africa to global focus is an important development of the 21st century. After decades of stagnation, African countries are showing a new determination to over-

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come continuing crises and conflicts in parts of the continent and move forward to take its rightful place in an evolving world order. The most important step towards a resurgent Africa was the replacement of the Organisation of African Unity (OAU) with a more ambitious and determined new continental organisation, namely the African Union (AU) in 2001, which symbolised the renaissance of PanAfricanisation.1 Another significant initiative taken by African leaders was the adoption of the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) in 2001. It provided a comprehensive, integrated development plan for the continent. These new initiatives formed part of a concerted effort by new African leaders to put the continent on track towards sustainable growth and development. Many African conflicts were successfully resolved and there are fewer civil wars in the continent. A significant optimistic development was the ending of the long-running North-South Civil War in Sudan on the basis of the historic peace agreement signed in Nairobi on January 9, 2005. Also in the summer of 2005, Africa became the focus of the world’s attention when the high-powered

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Blair Commission on Africa submitted its recommendations to assess the evolution of India’s foreign policy in Africa from in May with assurances of debt relief and more aid to Africa. the early 20th century down to the emerging realities of the The G-8 Summit at Gleneagles in Scotland in July, 2005, 21st century. endorsed the recommendations of the Blair Commission. Many African countries are now on the path of commend- Contemporary Scenario able economic growth. Africa is turning the corner from poverty and debt to prosperity and wealth, says to a World While discussing the broad theme of India’s foreign policy Bank report, outlining the new mood of economic renascence in Africa, it is appropriate to start with the contributions made in the continent. There are now nearly 20 countries that have by two extraordinary individuals — Mahatma Gandhi and achieved annual growth rates in excess of 5 percent for more Jawaharlal Nehru. To begin with, Gandhi’s role and influence than a decade. Angola’s GDP growth is one of the highest in in India, Africa and the world is well-known. It was in recogthe world, 21.1 percent! Equatorial Guinea stands at 11.1 per- nition of this that in 2007, the United Nations General cent. Some other African countries like Sao Tome, Principe Assembly (UNGA) decided to observe Mahatma Gandhi’s and Ethiopia currently has a GDP growth of above 8 percent.2 birthday, October 2, annually as the ‘International Day of Besides, the resource-rich continent is inviting attention from Non-Violence’. The revolutionary role played by Gandhi in all over the world because of its vast oil and mineral resources, South Africa against racial discrimination and oppression is most of which still remain untapped. Clearly, the world is well-documented. Called to Pretoria in 1893 to represent a waking up to the importance client, Gandhi found over Politically, the struggle against of Africa and is seeing the con150,000 of his countrymen tinent with a fresh pair of eyes. subjected to every sort of percolonialism and racial Commodity-producing discrimination in Africa is in line secution in the apartheid countries like Nigeria, South Africa. He fought racial Ethiopia, Sudan and the with the basic principles of India’s discrimination and oppression Democratic Republic of foreign policy. Economically, Africa in South Africa for 21 long Congo (DRC) and agricultur- offers enormous scope for mutually years — from 1893 to 1914. al powerhouses like Kenya and He established various politibeneficial South-South trade and cal organisations in South Tanzania and rapidly globalising countries like South Africa, commerce. Geo-strategically, the Africa such as the Natal Indian Mauritius, Tanzania and collaboration between India and Congress, the Cape British Benin are growing fast. Many Indian Union and the Africa is vital in maintaining the African countries are richly Transvaal British Indian endowed with commodities Gandhi’s Indian Ocean as a zone of peace. Association. like natural gas, oil, copper, Satyagraha movement in iron, coal and timber. With such a cornucopia of resources, South Africa lasted for eight years (1906-1913) and passive Africa’s collective economic might will only grow in the days resistance became universally recognised as a powerful new to come which will be characterized more by economic diplo- weapon to be used by the oppressed. Gandhi’s struggle against macy rather than ideology-influenced alignments. racial oppression and injustice in South Africa and India had In light of India’s engagement with Africa in the days of the a profound impact on the growth of African nationalism. In anti-colonial struggle and in the context of new global reali- the 1940s and 1950s, African nationalist leaders in West Africa, ties, it is clear that Africa should figure more prominently in notably Kwame Nkrumah of Ghana and Obafemi Qwolowo India’s foreign policy. To start with, politically, the struggle of Nigeria, affirmed their admiration of the anti-colonial against colonialism and racial discrimination in Africa was in movement in India and drew inspiration from that example. line with the basic principles of India’s foreign policy. In southern Africa, Kenneth Kaunda of Zambia has been Economically, Africa offers enormous scope for mutually ben- almost fanatically attached to Gandhism. Tom Mboya of eficial South-South trade and commercial linkages. Geo- Kenya and Julius Nyerere of Tanzania were also inspired by strategically, the collaboration between India and Africa is vital Gandhian ideals. Gandhi’s influence on the movement to libin maintaining the Indian Ocean as a zone of peace to promote erate Southern Africa was profound. For nearly four decades foreign trade and enhance mutual security interests. Besides, after its founding in 1912, the African National Congress the well-being of the large numbers of Indian nationals and (ANC) persevered with the method of Gandhian non-viosettlers, who have considerable business and other interests in lence. Chief Albert Luthuli, ANC president and Nobel Peace many African countries, should be vital to the foreign policy Prize winner, adopted the creed and strategy of non-violence concerns of India. Furthermore, it is important for India to under the influence of Gandhi’s teachings. It was not until the forge close relations with 54 independent African nations — late 1950s that the ANC finally opted for an armed struggle which constitute more than a quarter of the membership of against the apartheid regime. Undoubtedly, the foremost the UN and nearly half of the Non-Aligned Movement African leader who embodies the Gandhian ideals of passive (NAM) — in order to gain their support in global fora for resistance and non-violence is Nelson Mandela, the first policies vital to India’s national interests. This paper attempts President of post-apartheid South Africa. Mandela, despite 27

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years of incarceration, preferred the path of peace and reconciliation. The miracle of peaceful transition (negotiated revolution) to multiracial democracy from apartheid oppression in South Africa in 1994 signifies the continuing influence and relevance of Gandhi to Africa. Contributions of Jawaharlal Nehru By far the most substantial contribution to India’s Africa policy came from Jawaharlal Nehru, the first Prime Minister and Foreign Minister of India (1947-1964).3 It was he who stimulated an interest in African and international affairs in India and formulated the basic tenets of India’s foreign policy. He espoused the cause of African freedom during India’s own struggle for independence and took the lead in making the world aware of the problems and importance of the continent. Hardly had he become head of the Interim Government on September 1, 1946, when he began to exhort Asia and the world to help Africa. He told the Asian Relations Conference in New Delhi in March 1947: “We of Asia have a special responsibility to the people of Africa. We must help them to take their rightful place in the human family.” At the final session of the Asian-African Conference in Bandung in April 1955, he said: “Everything else pales into insignificance when I think of the infinite tragedy of Africa, ever since the days when millions of Africans were carried away as galley slaves to America and elsewhere, half of them dying in the galleys. We must accept responsibility for it, all of us, even though we ourselves were not directly involved… Even now the tragedy of Africa is greater than that of any other continent, whether it is racial or political. It is up to Asia to help Africa to the best of her ability, because we are sister continents.” Nehru saw to it that India did its utmost to promote African freedom and played a leading role on behalf of Africa at the United Nations and other forums until newly independent African nations could take over. He rejoiced at the march of freedom in Africa, and the formation of the Organisation of African Unity (OAU) in May 1963. He stated in the Indian Parliament on August 12, 1963: “Perhaps the most exciting thing that is happening in the 20th century is the awakening of Africa… It is, I think, a major event in history, and, what is more, it is going to play an ever-growing part in the coming years. We in India have naturally welcomed it.” Nehru’s concern with racism and colonialism in Africa and his feeling of solidarity with the African people had its roots in his innate humanism, his experience in the Indian freedom struggle, and his close association with Gandhi. He consistently stressed the need for making India and the world Africa conscious. It was with this in mind that he took the initiative to establish a School of African Studies at the Delhi University, which he personally inaugurated on August 6, 1955. Nehru’s personal commitment to the Afro-Asian resurgence helped India to pledge its support to Africans on two main issues, namely their anti-colonial struggles to achieve political independence, and the anti-apartheid struggles in South Africa to end racial discrimination and oppression. These two key areas remained the focus of India’s foreign

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policy towards Africa in the early years. It should, however, be stressed that in Africa, Nehru is remembered more as the founder of non-alignment, a policy which all African countries adopted after their independence. The formulation and adoption of non-alignment as a key element in India’s foreign policy at a time when the world was divided into two antagonistic power blocs was a testimony to Nehru’s genius and realistic assessment of India’s national interests. It was, however, at the Bandung Conference of 29 Asian and African nations in April 1955 that the concept of non-alignment was further developed and gained wider acceptance. For Africa, it was both historic and significant in the sense that it created all the necessary conditions for speeding up their liberation struggles. Even though only six African countries (Egypt, Ethiopia, Ghana, Liberia, Libya and Sudan) could attend the conference, it provided a critical forum for the discussion of Africa’s vital concerns, namely, liberation from colonialism, elimination of racialism, development and the question of unity and solidarity. Later on, Nkrumah of Ghana and Nasser of Egypt, both close associates of Nehru, provided the initiative and early leadership in developing non-alignment in Africa. In short, during the Nehru era, India had evolved a comprehensive Africa policy, which reflected a positive approach to international issues. The Post-Nehru Era In the early post-Nehru era, India took a keen interest in Southern Africa to assist the liberation movements there. In the early 1970s, newer impulses were visible in Indian diplomacy in Africa under the prime ministership of Indira Gandhi. She took personal interest in cultivating good relations with African liberation movements on a new footing. India, under Mrs Gandhi, also extended legal recognition to progressive African liberation movements, such as Angola’s Popular Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA). It may be pointed out here that regardless of which party or leader came to power in subsequent years in New Delhi they all followed more or less Nehru’s policies in Africa. In the growth of India’s foreign policy in Africa, the period of India’s chairmanship of NAM during 1983-86 is particularly noteworthy. First under Mrs. Gandhi’s and later under Rajiv Gandhi’s chairmanship of NAM, vital African issues such as the critical economic situation in Africa and the deepening crisis in Southern Africa caught the world’s attention. Rajiv’s tour of Angola, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe in May 1986 was widely welcomed as a “timely gesture of solidarity” with the Frontline States of Southern Africa and support for the relentless struggle against the apartheid regime in South Africa. Among others, a major step taken at the 1986 Harare Summit of NAM was the creation of the AFRICA Fund under India’s chairmanship to assist the Frontline States. During the next five years, the Fund rendered valuable economic and financial assistance to the Frontline States. In the development of India’s foreign policy in Africa, India’s support for the liberation of Namibia and the dismantling of apartheid in South Africa merits special attention.

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India played commendable role in preventing the incorporation of South-West Africa (Namibia) into the Union of South Africa at the very first UNGA session in 1946. During the 23 years of Namibia’s armed struggle (1967-1990) under the leadership of the South West Africa Peoples Organisation (SWAPO), India extended considerable moral and material support. India also fully supported the crucial UN Resolution 435 (1978), which laid down the agenda for Namibia’s independence. In November 1989, immediately after SWAPO won a resounding victory in the elections, Sam Nujoma, president of SWAPO, declared “the future independent and sovereign Namibia will grant India special status because of its support for the people of Namibia during the 23 years of liberation war”.4 Since independence in March 1990, there has been close cooperation between India and Namibia.5 Special Relationship with South Africa India’s relations with South Africa fall in a special category, particularly because of the role played by Gandhi. India was the first country to take up the issue of racial discrimination in South Africa at UNGA’s very first session in 1946 and also to break off trade relations with that country at considerable economic loss.6 These economic sanctions continued for nearly half a century till the final dismantling of apartheid in South Africa in 1993-94. Opposition to racism in South Africa remained a key tenet of Indian foreign policy. Among others, India helped to develop public support in the West for the struggle of the African people in South Africa. In 1967, India provided facilities as well as financial and other support to ANC to maintain its Asian Mission in New Delhi. With India’s record of support for the ANC during the period of the anti-apartheid struggles it became easy for India to forge closer links with post-apartheid South Africa. The spe-

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cial relationship between the two countries is also reflected in many initiatives such as the creation of the Indo-South African Inter-Governmental Joint Commission for political, trade, economic, cultural, scientific and technical cooperation which led to the signing of the “Treaty on Principles of Inter-State Relations and Collaboration” during President Mandela’s state visit to India in January 1995.7 India’s Economic Diplomacy in Africa With the end of political colonialism in Africa, marked by the liberation of South Africa from apartheid in 1994, economic issues have naturally come to assume greater prominence. The crucial question now is how India and African countries could support each other more solidly in their common struggle for economic liberation. A significant change in India’s Africa policy came about in the 1960s with the establishment of the Indian Technical and Economic Cooperation Programme (ITEC). Launched in 1964, the ITEC sought to extend bilateral assistance and cooperation to developing countries, particularly in Africa. It covered the following areas: ■ Extension of technical cooperation ■ Establishment of mutually beneficial trade relations ■ Grant of capital aid and technical expertise to help build medium and

small-scale industries India is one of the few Third World countries which has not only considerable expertise in technology and management but also the capability to help other developing countries in a variety of sectors, such as agriculture, industry, information technology, trade, joint ventures, capacity building, consultancy services bilateral assistance, energy resources and human

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resource development. In the past few decades, particularly in the last couple of years, India has been extending considerable aid and assistance to many African countries, such as Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Mauritius, Mozambique, Seychelles, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe among others.8 However, this has been a relatively minor aspect of India’s economic diplomacy in Africa. The major focus of India’s economic diplomacy in African countries relates to: (a) Trade; (b) Agriculture; (c) Information Technology; (d) Industry; (e) Joint Ventures; and, (f) Consultancy Services. Trade Even though India has a very long history of trade with Africa, trade ties remain much below potential. Africa as a whole remains a small trading partner of India. The quantum of exports to and imports from Africa has been decreasing from the 1960s to the 1990s. In the early 1980s, India had trade relations with more than 40 African countries of which 11 countries, namely Algeria, Benin, Egypt, Kenya, Mauritius, Nigeria, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia, absorbed about 80 percent of its African exports. At the same time, seven countries, namely, Egypt, Sudan, Democratic Republic of Congo (Zaire), Zambia, Morocco, Kenya and Ghana, supplied 70 percent of India’s imports from Africa.9 However, it is gratifying to note that there has been appreciable growth in India’s trade with Africa in more recent years. The uptrend in African economy since the early 1990s also coincided with the acceleration in India’s own economic growth since the initiation of economic reforms in 1991. These trends are reflected in India’s bilateral (non-oil) trade with Africa, which has grown almost 10-fold from $967 million in 1990-91 to $9.14 billion in 2004-05.10 Exports during this period have risen from a mere $394 million to $5.4 billion, while imports have grown from $573 mil-

lion to $ 3.8 billion. As a result, Africa’s share in India’s total exports has trebled from 2.2 percent to 6.8 percent while the continent’s share of our total imports has also gone up from 2.4 percent to 3.5 percent, yielding a substantial trade surplus in the process.11 Equally encouraging is the sharp increase in India’s exports in the last couple of years, growing 23.2 percent in 2003-04 and by as much as 39.1 percent in 2004-05. These positive trends have continued during the first quarter of 2005-06, with India’s exports to Africa rising by as much as 63 percent and imports by 35.5 percent.12 However, here a comparison with the quantum of Chinese trade with Africa, for example, will give an idea as to the potential for strengthening India’s trade relations with Africa. Between 2000 and 2006, China’s trade with Africa has seen a dramatic increase from $11 billion to $50 billion. In 2005, total trade between Africa and China was $40 billion and is expected to reach $100 billion by 2010.13 Agriculture The contribution of agriculture to GDP in Africa ranges from a high of more than 33 percent in East Africa to less than 8 percent for Southern Africa.14 Africa is a net food-importing region. One of the key reasons for the poor performance of African economies has been a lack of development in the agricultural sector. It is estimated that Africa produces only 20 percent of its cereal requirements. There is a useful lesson for Africa from India’s experience in agriculture. India was also confronted with a similar situation of food shortages in the early decades of independence. In India, as a result of the adoption of new agricultural strategies and other measures, foodgrain production which was only 51 million tonnes in 1950-51 rose to 191 million tonnes in 1994-95.15 India has taken a number of initiatives in this regard, in Africa — notable among them being the deputation of agri-

ONGC-Videsh Ltd.’s Sudan Pipeline Project

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Former President Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam discussing the Pan-African e-Network Project with an African Union delegation.

cultural experts to various projects in Africa. However, there is greater scope for mutually beneficial, but untapped, agricultural cooperation and collaboration between India and various African countries. Industry Barring few exceptions the industrial sector is underdeveloped in Africa. Countries with the most diversified economies (Egypt, Morocco, South Africa and Tunisia) continue to focus on traditional industries, such as food processing and textiles, except South Africa, which is more industrialised than any other African country. Manufacturing is largely underdeveloped which explains the limited contribution of industry to GDP growth on the continent. It is another area were India could make a major contribution. India and Africa could also cooperate in a number of agro-based processing industries such as sugar, cashew processing and vegetable oil industry. However, the rural and small-scale industry sector is considered more important in this regard. This sector has a vital role in building rural-urban linkages and providing an inexpensive, low-cost and labour-intensive development process. Since India has a vibrant and well-established small and medium-scale industries sector, a number of African countries have appreciated the relevance of Indian production techniques in this respect. Energy and Natural Resources Africa’s possession of vast quantities of energy and natural resources has been a great attraction for foreign powers to penetrate Africa. In recent years along with Sudan, the countries around the Gulf of Guinea are emerging as major producers of hydrocarbons. India has a successful collaboration in Sudan where India is already demonstrating the manner in which it can contribute to development of local infrastruc-

ture. In India’s efforts to gain access to some of the resources needed for the country’s growing industries, it should strike a careful balance between its needs and the imperative of respecting Africa’s own development priorities and environmental concerns. It is important to establish win-win partnerships that can show clear benefits for the African economy and society in return for the natural resources that India obtains from Africa. Pan-African e-Network Project A flagship project of India, initiated by former President Dr. A.P. J. Abdul Kalam, the Pan-African e-Network Project seeks to use the Indian expertise in information technology to bring benefits of healthcare and higher education to all counties of Africa. It was formally launched by External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee in Addis Ababa on July 6, 2007 during his first-ever official visit to Sub-Saharan Africa. The network will be connected by a satellite/fibre optical network to provide tele-medicine, tele-education and VVIP connectivity to all the 53 African countries. The Indian government has approved $120 million for this dream project aimed at bridging the digital divide in Africa. The network will consist of five regional universities, 53 leading centres, five regional superspecialty hospitals and 53 remote hospitals in all countries of Africa. Six universities and six super-specialty hospitals in India will be linked to the Network. The hub of the project will be located in Senegal, West Africa. Ethiopia has become the first beneficiary under a pilot project estimated to cost $2.13 million.16 Briefly, the Pan-African e-Network is a remarkable new project that attempts to add a fresh dimension to India’s partnership with Africa at the continental level. India and the African Union India is a member of the newly established AU Partners

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Group, which meets periodically in Addis Ababa. The launch of AU in July 2002, in Durban, South Africa, marked a major milestone in the evolution of Pan-Africanism and Africa’s search for continental unity to secure an equitable place in the world order. It has been described as “an event of great magnitude in the institutional evolution of the Continent”.17 India has enjoyed excellent relationship with most African countries at the bilateral level. However, India needs to go beyond bilateral relationships by developing a paradigm of cooperation which will take into account Africa’s own aspirations for panAfrican institutions and development. Since the AU’s inception in July 2002, India has been regularly participating in its various summits. In January 2008, India attended the 10th AU Summit in Addis Ababa. The Indian delegation was led by Minister of State for External Affairs Anand Sharma. The AU has established a task force to provide a new emphasis to relations with India, China and Latin America, among others. India is now in the process of working out a new strategic partnership with African countries bilaterally and regionally.

comprising nine nations. The group included India and eight West African nations — Burkina Faso, Chad, Ivory Coast, Equatorial Guinea, Ghana, Guinea Bissau, Mali and Senegal. The TEAM-9 programme created a mechanism for India’s cooperation with these countries to facilitate the transfer of technology, assist in imparting training and share expertise for specific projects. Under the programme, India has taken up bilateral projects as well as bigger regional projects. It is also relevant to note here that to promote closer cooperation in the three continents of Asia, Africa and South America, India had taken the initiative to establish what came to be known as the IBSA (India, Brazil, South Africa) Group whose first summit was held in Brasilia in June 2003. The IBSA dialogue forum plays an increasingly important role in the foreign policies of India, Brazil and South Africa. Conclusions and Policy Recommendations

India has always enjoyed exceptionally warm relations with most African countries. Many countries in Africa see India as Trends and Prospects a role model for her accomplishments in sectors as diverse as agriculture and small industries In the 21st century, as we Many countries in Africa see India to IT, democracy and space have noted, Africa has technology. Many Africans as a role model for her returned to the world stage Indian democracy as a accomplishments in sectors as consider with many developed and model for Africa.20 There is a diverse as agriculture and small great similarity of perspectives developing countries now giving considerable attention to industries to IT, democracy and between that of India and on various regional and the continent. Above all, oil in space technology. Many Africans Africa international issues. However, Africa is the new magnet consider Indian democracy as a it will be sometime before attracting many countries to seek economic opportunities model for Africa. There is a great India can establish a new kind durable presence in the vast in Africa. Over the last 10 similarity of perspectives between of diverse and resource-rich conyears, sub-Saharan Africa has recorded an increase in pro- that of India and Africa on various tinent of Africa. As an emerging power, India duction (over 51 percent), regional and international issues. is set to play a growing role in which is matched only by the CIS (Commonwealth of Independent States) countries. Africa in the coming years. India’s ongoing programme of ecoIndia’s investment, for example, in Sudan’s hydrocarbon sec- nomic liberalisation and globalisation implies the growing need tor, cumulatively amounts to nearly $2 billion. The other for markets and new sources of energy and raw material. Africa recent success for India has been Libya where Indian compa- offers major opportunities with regard to both while India can nies, such as the Oil India Ltd. and Indian Oil Corporation offer manufactured goods and services at competitive prices. There is an urgent need to develop closer India-Africa eco(OIL-IOC) combine, and ONGC-Videsh Ltd. (OVL), have between them won three blocks in the face of stiff international nomic and trade relations in the true spirit of the South-South competition. Recently, the OVL also acquired shares in some Cooperation. However, before presenting Indo-African relations as a model for South-South Cooperation, the African E&P blocks in Nigeria.18 Besides institutional partnerships in Africa, a key compo- perceptions and perspectives on the subject should be taken nent of India’s initiative in Africa is the ‘Focus: Africa into account. What South-South Cooperation means to Africa Programme’ under the Exam policy 2002-2007. India’s Oil and what Africans expect from it should be a crucial subject and Natural Gas Commission (ONGC) has committed $2 of consideration in the process. South-South Cooperation billion in an oil field in Nigeria, which is believed to have must be based on the full recognition of the principle that each reserves of over 300 million barrels of oil and 2.5 trillion cubic country is both a donor and a recipient. We should avoid feet of gas. Production by the ONGC could reach the peak developing a class of donor and a group of recipient countries of 2,25,000 barrels a day in 2008. India has also negotiated ener- along the lines of the Euro-African relations. At the political gy deals with Libya, Sudan and the Ivory Coast.19 level, India has a vast reservoir of goodwill garnered during the In 2004, India established the ‘Techno Economic Approach period of political liberation and has close alliance with African for Africa and India Movement’, or the TEAM-9 concept, countries through various groupings, such as the NAM, G-

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A F R I C A 77, G-20 and IBSA. It is important for India and African countries to work out adequate policy packages and institutional structures, technologies and inter-regional development schemes. To help develop mutually beneficial linkages in the spirit of genuine South-South Cooperation, a few policy recommendations may be in order: ■ Knowledge Deficit: There is a need for deeper understanding of Africa among policymakers, the general public, the media and the academic community in India. Indian school and university syllabi should have greater African content. At the university level, only about three out of a total of 400 universities in India offer course in African studies. ■ Trade Deficit: Secondly, there is much untapped scope for enhancing economic diplomacy in Africa, particularly in trade and investment. India’s overall trade with Africa still is very small as compared to other major powers. Also at present India’s trade with Africa is confined to some 10 countries and limited to a few commodities. India needs to steps up investments in Africa and diversify its trade basked with African countries. ■ Health Sector: Another specific area of focus should be health. Indian physicians and surgeons have carved a niche for themselves in Britain and the US. They can provide the highest quality of health services in Africa and can help train doctors there. Health problems in Africa and the scourge of HIVAIDS is not only a threat to Africa but also to the world. A health plan for Africa should be a global priority and India should take a major responsibility in fulfilling such a plan in a proactive partnership with African countries. ■ Institution Building: Another specific area in which India can be of great relevance to Africa is in the area of strengthening democracy and judicial institutions and setting up a machinery for free and fair elections in African countries.

Q U A R T E R L Y

Democratic institutions ranging from electoral bodies, political parties, courts, academia, the media and civil society organisations are in most cases weak or not fully prepared for the conduct of even relatively free and fair elections. India can make a constructive and positive contribution in this area. There is much that India can contribute to the area of governance and the complex and intractable issues of inter-state dispute resolution. ■ Indian Diaspora in Africa: The people of Indian origin and Non-Resident Indians (NRIs), who constitute a significant ethnic minority on a Pan-African basis, can serve as a functional bridgehead in India’s interactions with Africa. The same goes for the large number of African Alumni who have an old association with India could be made use of in many positive ways. On an average, some 15,000 African students study in Indian universities every year. Indian universities should have more African students. A regular study exchange of scholars and statesmen should be planned to make IndiaAfrica relations more vibrant and fruitful. India also needs to enhance its diplomatic presence in Africa and set up more resident missions in African countries. Also, there is need for more high-level visits from India to African countries. However, first and foremost, India should fashion a New India-Africa Partnership (NIAP) that is tune with complex realities of the 21st century and beyond. The forthcoming India-Africa Forum Summit is a step in this direction. The theme of the 10th African Union Summit held in Addis Ababa at the end of January 2008, namely, “Industrial Development of Africa”, is very significant for the future development of India-Africa partnership in the future. India needs to upgrade its commitment to the development and industrialisation of Africa. A rising India is good for Africa and a rising Africa is good for India. ■

Notes and References 1. K. Mathews, “Renaissance of Pan-Africanism: The African Union”, India International Centre Quarterly, Vol. 31, No. 1, Spring 2005 2. The Economist, The World in 2008, pp. 107-116 3. Hari Sharan Chhabra, Nehru and Resurgent Africa, New Delhi, Africa Publications, 1989 4. See India and Namibia, Africa Quarterly, Special Issue, Vol. 35, No. 2, 1995 5. Ibid. 6. K. Mathews, “India-Africa: A multi-Faceted Relationship”, Africa Quarterly, Vol. 37, Nos. 1& 2, 1997 7. “India and South Africa”, Africa Quarterly, Special Issue, Vl. 35, No. 2, 1995 8. Navdeep Suri, “India and Africa: A Contemporary Perspective”, in Atish Sinha and Madhup Mohta (eds.), Indian Foreign Policy: Challenges and Opportunities, New Delhi, Academic Foundation, 2007 pp. 507 9. R.K. Dhawan, “Current and Potential Trade and Economic Linkages between India And Africa”, in N.N. Vohra and K. Mathews (Eds), Africa, India and South-South Cooperation, New Delhi, Har Anand Publications Pvt. Ltd, 1997, 239-252 10. See Navdeep Suri, op. cit.

11. Ibid., 12. Africa Quarterly, Vol. 47, No, 2, pp. 8 13. New African, London, No. 471, March 2008, pp. 22 14. Economic Commission for Africa, (ECA), Economic Report on Africa 2007, pp. 47 15. Harjinder Singh, “Development Strategy for Agriculture: A Lesson from Indian Experience”, in N.N. Vohra and K. Mathews (eds.), Africa, India and South-South Cooperation, New Delhi, Har Anand Publications, pp. 413-30 16. Africa Quarterly, Vol. 47, No. 2, May-July 2007, pp. 8 17. Gurjit Singh, “India and Africa: A Response to African Institutionalisation in the 21st Century”, in Atish Sinha and Madhup Mohta (eds.) Indian Foreign Policy: Challenges and Opportunities, New Delhi, Academic Foundation, 2007, pp. 47-505 18. Talmiz Ahmed, “Power Talk: Imparting Energy to Relations”, Africa Quarterly, Vol. 45, No. 1, November, 2005 pp. 30-33 19. See V.P. Dutt, India’s Foreign Policy Since Independence, National Book Trust, India, New Delhi, 2007, pp. 236-37 20. Manish Chand, Interview with Nuruddin Farah, Africa Quarterly, Vol.46, No.1, 2006, pp. 20

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India and the Maghreb States: Challenges and OPPORTUNITIES Beyond the economics of a globalising world, there is a need to build a ‘human bridge’ by involving the Indian community and encouraging deeper cultural interaction with the region, says A.K. Pasha

D

espite the geographic separation between India and the Maghreb states by the deserts of Arabia and Sahara, and the Arabian, Red and Mediterranean Seas, throughout known history, Indian and Maghreb peoples have had close relations. India has had ancient ties with Egypt and both the Nile and Indus valley civilisations have interacted closely. The famous traveller from Morocco, Ibn Batuta, came to India and wrote about his experiences. Vasco da Gama, who founded the direct sea route to India from Europe when he came to Calicut in May 1498, was astonished to find Tunisian spice merchants in Kerala with whom he could speak in Portuguese and Spanish. The proud and independent people of Maghreb were soon colonised by the French, British, Italians and Spanish. By 1847, France took over Algeria and by 1881 Tunisia. France became interested in Morocco as early as in 1830 but could proclaim Morocco a protectorate only in 1912. The British took over Egypt in 1882 while Italy took over Libya from the Ottomans in 1911. Even before its independence, India would wholeheartedly support the liberation struggles of the Maghreb Arab people. After independence, India has come to share with the Maghreb states values like secularism, multiparty democracy, and grass-roots involvement of people in decision-making. Both have been founding members of the non-aligned movement and at the UN have been striving for global peace, security, and sustainable development. Bilateral visits have been sustained at the India’s Trade Balance (2006-07) with highest levels and trade has been growMaghreb countries (US$ million) ing. People to people contacts have grown and cultural ties strengthened. Name of the India’s Total Trade India’s India’s Balance This article makes an attempt to study Country Exports Imports of Trade India’s relations with the five Arab Algeria 336 1,086 750 -414 Maghreb states of Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, Egypt 760 2,502 1,742 -982 Algeria and Morocco. It will give a brief historical background of bilateral ties in Libya 86 221 135 -49 a historical context, examine the political Morocco 164 655 491 -327 and trade ties and then analyse the nature of challenges and opportunities in the background of globalisation.

38

Tunisia

109

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253

144

-35


A F R I C A

Q U A R T E R L Y

Commodity Composition of India’s Exports to Maghreb Countries (US$ million) Algeria

2005-06

2006-07

Growth %

Total

271.0

336.0

24.0

Vehicles other than Railway or Tramway rolling stock and parts and accessories thereof

135.6

129.0

-5.0

Articles of Iron or steel

20.7

88.4

328.0

Pharmaceutical products

14.84

18.11

22.0

Egypt

2005-06

2006-07

Growth %

Total

672.4

760.4

13.0

Cotton

86.7

114.5

32.0

Vehicles other than Railway or Tramway rolling stock and parts and accessories thereof

44.4

73.2

64.8

Machinery and Mechanical Appliances, parts thereof

50.8

59.2

16.4

Libya

2005-06

2006-07

Growth %

Total

103.3

86.2

-17.0

Rice

5.6

11.1

100.0

Articles of iron or steel

11.6

22.9

97.2

Machinery and Mechanical Appliances

27.9

4.1

-85.2

Morocco

2005-06

2006-07

Growth %

Total

127.5

164.2

29.0

Man-made filaments

17.0

24.8

45.7

Vehicles other than Railway or Tramway rolling stock, and parts and accessories thereof

17.2

23.2

34.7

Cotton

14.0

21.7

54.7

Tunisia

2005-06

2006-07

Growth %

Total

82.6

109.3

32.4

Cotton

13.9

18.1

30.0

Plastic and Articles thereof

6.5

11.5

77.8

Fish and other aquatic invertebrates

6.2

11.1

79.2

Source: - Foreign Trade Statistics of India, Ministry of Commerce, Government of India

Algeria India’s first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru was greatly impressed by the Algerian people’s struggle for freedom. Soon after Algeria’s independence, Nehru made an emotional statement in India’s Parliament on March 19, 1962: “I doubt if we can easily find in the records of history a struggle as intense as that waged by the Algerian people during the past several years and more, attended by such intense sufferings, and such a large number of casualties and killings. No one can deny that if a price had to be paid for

India’s Trade Balance with different Maghreb countries (US$ million, 2006-07) Name of the Country

India’s Exports

Total Trade India’s Imports

India’s Balance of Trade

Algeria

336

1,086

750

-414

Egypt

760

2,502

1,742

-982

Libya

86

221

135

-49

Morocco

164

655

491

-327

Tunisia

109

253

144

-35

Source: Foreign Trade Statistics of India, Ministry of Commerce and Government of India.

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freedom, the Algerian people have paid much more than any price that could have been laid down… I hope that the Algerian people after having paid such a heavy price for their independence will progress rapidly and become a bulwark of peace and cooperation in the world.” India and Algeria have worked closely in the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM), the United Nations and other multilateral organisations and both share a long-standing relationship and a great convergence of views on issues of global significance. Both have been consistently cooperating in a number of world forums. Indira Gandhi visited Algeria in 1967 at the Ministerial Conference of the Group of 77 while India hosted Algerian President Abdel Aziz Bouteflika as the Chief Guest at the 2001 Republic Day celebrations, and both states signed the Strategic Partnership Agreement. The treaty offers a framework for strengthening bilateral cooperation. India’s Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas Murli Deora visited Algeria in June 2007 and ties between the two countries have improved substantially. India’s diplomatic representation to Algeria was upgraded, with the appointment of an Ambassador in Algiers. New Delhi and Algiers have also been hosting bilateral meetings regularly. India’s exports to Algeria increased from $271 million in 2005-06 to $336 million in 2006-07, thus improving by 24 percent. Vehicles, articles of iron or steel and pharmaceutical products have been important commodities constituting India’s export basket. India’s exports of vehicles to Algeria decreased from $135.6 million in 2005-06 to $129 million in 2006-07, thus declining by 5 percent. Exports of articles of iron or steel from India to Algeria improved tremendously by increasing from $20.7 million in 2005-06 to $88.4 million in 2006-07. India’s exports of pharmaceutical products to Algeria increased from $ 14.8 million in 2005-06 to 18.1 million in 2006-07, thus growing by 22 percent. A number of Indian companies are already working on various projects in partnership with Algerian public and private sector companies. Yet there is scope for deeper bilateral cooperation in economy, trade, culture and other fields. In 2006-07, India’s imports from Algeria amounted to $750 million. Most of India’s imports from Algeria consist of petroleum oil crude, petroleum oil other than crude and petroleum gases. Egypt Soon after the 1952 Egyptian revolution, Nehru was keen to have deeper cultural ties with Egypt to give substance to India’s political relationship with the country. By supporting Nasser’s template of Arab nationalism, Nehru cemented ties between India and Egypt. In fact, relations had become warmer as early as 1953 when Nehru stopped by in Cairo on his way to and from the Commonwealth Prime Ministers’ Conference. Nehru made another trip to Cairo in February 1955. It is through these visits and meetings that the idea of non-alignment had a decisive impact upon Nasser. Nehru attached great importance to his friendship with Egypt as he viewed Cairo to be the key to the success of India’s

40

policy towards the Islamic world and the Arab world in particular. Nehru placed great emphasis on Nasser in the West Asian region and this largely continued until Nasser’s death in September 1970. Thus, India and Egypt enjoyed an exceptionally close relationship during the Nehru-Nasser era, and signed a Friendship Treaty in 1955. The birth of the Non-Aligned Movement was, inter alia, the outcome of this relationship. However, soon differences broke out among Egypt, Syria and other Arab nations over the Arab-Israeli peace process. India’s policy was not to take sides in intra-Arab disputes. Under the Janata government (1977) led by Morarji Desai, there were fears that India may reorient its pro-Arab policy. There were attempts to expel Egypt from NAM following its peace treaty with Israel, but India opposed it at the NAM summit in Havana. It would be unrealistic to believe that bilateral relations can be insulated from the dynamics of a changing world. This applies not only to changes created by external impulses, but equally significantly to internal developments in each country over a period of time. The assassinations of Anwar Sadat in 1981 and Indira Gandhi in 1984 drove many to conclude that an era of good Indo-Egyptian relations had come to an end. President Mubarak visited India in 1982, and again in 1983, to attend the NAM Summit. In 1995, the Jawaharlal Nehru Award for International Understanding was conferred on Mubarak. Since the 1980s, there have been three Prime Ministerial visits from India to Egypt. In January 2003, Dr. Fathi Sorour, Speaker of the People’s Assembly, led a delegation of Egyptian parliamentarians to the Golden Jubilee celebrations of the Indian Parliament. Besides, there have been many significant ministerial visits from Egypt to India and vice-versa. The dialogue with Egypt has also been maintained in a structured format through meetings of the Joint Commission, and Foreign Office Consultations. Ambassador C.R. Gharekhan, India’s Special Envoy for the West Asia and Middle East Peace Process, visited Cairo in February 2007 while the Egyptian Foreign Minister, Aboul Gheit, visited India in December 2006. The Fifth Session of the Joint Commission, co-chaired by the Minister of External Affairs of India and the Egyptian Foreign Minister, was held in 2006. Five agreements were signed, including the Partnership Agreement; an MoU on bilateral air services; the Work Plan on Agricultural Cooperation; the Executive Programme on Cultural Exchanges; and the Executive Programme on Cooperation in the Field of Science and Technology. In 2006-07, India’s imports from Egypt were estimated at $1,742 million. To give further boost to bilateral economic cooperation, a Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA) is being negotiated with the aim of doubling bilateral trade from the present $1 billion. A new Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement is also being negotiated. At the moment, Egypt Air operates seven flights per week from Cairo to Mumbai via Sharjah in UAE. India has emerged as one of the largest investors in Egypt with a total investment of over $2 billion in over 50 projects.

February-April 2008


A F R I C A The largest has been Grasim India’s Alexandria Carbon Black. Other significant players with major investments include Asian Paints, Oberoi Group, Thapars, Dabur, ESSEL, Niletex, Auto Tech Engineering, Kirloskar, IFFCO, UTI, Ranbaxy, Ashok Leyland, GAIL, HDFC, ONGC and NIIT. Many IT and software firms are active in Egypt and can help boost trade and economic cooperation. Both bilateral trade and Indian investments in Egypt are expanding fast, with the latest being a $300 million investment by the Reliance Group in

Q U A R T E R L Y

Centre. Trade figures also show significant progress. In 2006, the volume stood at $1.5 billion while in 2007, it has risen to $2 billion. Bilateral Economic and Commercial Relations: Egypt has traditionally been one of India’s most important trading partners in the African continent. The India-Egypt Bilateral Trade Agreement has been in operation since March 1978 and is based on the Most Favoured Nation clause. Bilateral trade figures are given below:

India-Egypt Bilateral Trade (US$ million) Financial Year (July-June)

Total Exports to Egypt

Total imports from Egypt

Total trade

Trade surplus for Egypt

2002 - 03

261.63

466.09

727.72

204.46

2003 - 04

155.34

453.87

609.21

298.53

2004 - 05

246.26

424.95

671.21

178.69

2005 - 06

363.67

930.29

1293.96

566.62

2006 - 07

427.42

1534.27

1961.69

1106.85

Source: CAPMAS of Egypt

the petrochemical sector in Egypt. There has been a significant increase in the number of Indian tourists holidaying in Egypt. In 2006, there were 60,000 arrivals, a 50 per cent increase from 2005. In recognition of the huge potential of the Indian market, the Egyptian Tourism Authority opened an office in Mumbai in April 2006. New areas of cooperation are emerging in railways, fertilisers, pharmaceuticals and agro industries. Since Dr. Mohammed Higazy came to India as the new Ambassador of Egypt in 2006, he has tirelessly worked to deepen relations with India. Numerous visits from Egypt followed. In 2006, Egypt’s Minister for Telecommunications and Information Technology Dr. Tarek Kamel visited India, leading a 55-member delegation of officials and businessmen. The delegation signed five MoUs for mutual cooperation in ICT (information and communication technology) research and development, training, internet security, postal services and telecom regulations and policies. He also held talks with representatives of Nasscom, Infosys, Wipro and other leading IT companies. Satyam agreed to open a branch office in Cairo. The second visit was of the Egyptian Foreign Minister, Ahmed Aboul Gheit, on December 16, 2006. He came for the fifth meeting of the India-Egypt Joint Commission co-chaired by External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee. Both sides signed a Partnership Agreement based on which Foreign Ministry officials will now meet bi-annually to review the progress of initiatives and projects agreed between the two countries. This was the first visit by an Egyptian foreign minister since 1997 and the visit gave a strong boost to bilateral cooperation. An Executive Program of Science and Technological Cooperation was signed, as was a work plan for 2007-08 in agricultural cooperation between the Indian Council of Agricultural Research and the Egyptian Agricultural Research

India’s exports to Egypt increased from $672.4 million in 2005-06 to $760.4 million in 2006-07, thus growing by 13 percent during the above period. Cotton, vehicles and machinery and mechanical appliances have been important items of India’s export basket to Egypt. Export of cotton from India to Egypt rose from $86.7 million in 2005-06 to $114.5 million in 2006-07, thus growing by 32 percent. Export of vehicles to Egypt improved from $44.4 million in 2005-06 to $73.2 million in 2006-07, thus increasing by about 65 percent. Exports of machinery and mechanical appliances from India to Egypt increased from $50.8 million in 2005-06 to $59.2 million in 2006-07, thus growing by over 16 percent. For the calendar year 2006, India emerged as Egypt’s thirdlargest trading partner behind the US and Italy and as the largest importer of Egyptian products. According to Egyptian trade figures, India’s exports to Egypt amounted to $354.90 million while imports stood at $1,392.30 million during the period. Exclusive Indian exhibitions were organised in Cairo in April 1998 and September 2000 while the Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Trade declared 2002 as the ‘Year of India’ in Egypt. Indian companies have been regular participants in the annual Cairo International Trade Fairs. Under the aegis of ITPO, 16 Indian companies participated in the Cairo International Fair in March 2007. To further boost Indo-Egyptian cooperation, Indian Home Minister Shivraj Patil paid an official visit to Egypt from January 5-9, 2008 at the invitation of Egypt’s Minister of Interior Habib El Adly. The visit of Patil sustains the momentum of bilateral Ministerial-level exchanges between India and Egypt while at the same time widening the scope of the bilateral relationship. The delegation-level talks identified the specifics as regards counter-terrorism, illegal trafficking of narcotics, money laundering, capacity building, technological

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aspects of security management and related priorities. India Egypt Joint Business Group An Indo-Egypt Joint Business Group (IEJBG) was formed in October 1997 at the instance of the then Prime Ministers of India and Egypt to increase economic and industrial cooperation between the two countries with involvement of private sectors. The IEJBG, supported by the Government of India and the Ministry of External Affairs, and Egypt’s Ministry of International Cooperation, has held three meetings so far - one in Cairo in 1999, the second in Bangalore in 2002, and the latest in 2004 at New Delhi. Libya During the Janata Government in 1977, India’s Industry Minister visited Libya twice, which gave a boost to IndoLibyan economic cooperation. Libya’s Vice-President Abdul Salaam Jalloud visited India in July 1978 and both the countries decided to establish a Joint Commission to ‘review, monitor, guide and plan’ economic cooperation. As chairperson of NAM, Prime Minister Indira Gandhi visited Libya in 1984 and held talks with the Libyan leader Muammar Qadhafi. In 1986, Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi met Qadhafi in Harare, Zimbabwe, during the NAM summit. Economic cooperation between India and Libya has been traditionally strong, while a significant number of Indians have had well-paid jobs in Libya. These include doctors, nurses, engineers, university professors, technicians and other skilled workers. Minister of State for Commerce and Industry E.V.K.S. Elangovan visited Libya to participate in the Ninth Session of the Indo-Libyan Joint Commission for Economic Cooperation in Tripoli in November 2004. New agreements were signed in economic fields not covered so far. Indian exports to Libya have grown exponentially from a meager 17.52 million LD in 2003 to 212.41 million LD in 2004. India has also imported 438.89 million LD worth of crude oil. This amounts to 2.58 percent of Libya’s total crude oil export during 2004. Rice, articles of iron/steel, machinery and mechanical appliances have been important commodities in India’s basket of exports to Libya. Export of rice from India to Libya increased from $5.6 million in 2005-06 to $11.1 million in 2006-07, thus growing by 100 percent. Export of articles of iron or steel also increased from 11.6 million in 200506 to $22.9 million, thus growing by over 97 percent. However, export of machinery and mechanical appliances from India to Libya declined considerably. India exported $27.9 million worth of machinery and mechanical appliances

to Libya during 2005-06. This declined to $4.1 million in 2006-07. Due to rapid changes in Libya’s economic policies one must evaluate the emerging opportunities for Indo-Libyan economic cooperation. Indian companies that successfully operated in the 1970s and 80s have created a favourable image in the country. India also has an edge over others in certain fields like information technology, educational services, and healthcare systems so on. Libyan energy, power, and construction sectors offer areas of cooperation. Agro products, banking, pharmaceuticals and telecommunications could also be explored. Libya offers an attractive market to a range of Indian exports, as well as great opportunities for investment and joint ventures. Under an agreement signed with Libya, India would send skilled manpower to Libya and also impart technical education to Libyan students. Libya has also invited Indian participation in the building material industry, including technical and managerial aid for several Libyan cement plants established earlier with Indian technical assistance. External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee paid an official visit to Libya from May 26-28, 2007. Mukherjee’s visit was part of the regular process of high-level exchanges between the two countries. Manpower Export In addition to commodity exports, manpower export has been an important feature of the Indian economy. India has become the largest earner of foreign exchange remittances among developing countries. Oil exporting countries have been an important destination of the Indian labour force for a long time. In the mid 70s, around 50,000 Indian workers were in Libya but the number of expatriate workers did decline owing to UN sanctions on Libya. It was reported that a little over 3,000 India expatriate workers went to Libya in 2007. However, this is an underestimation of the data about Indian workers in Libya as it is based on the number of emigration clearances issued. Besides, qualified professionals do not require emigration clearance. A substantial chunk of the Indian work force belongs to professional groups like doctors, engineer teachers and other technical experts. Thus the volume of Indian workers is far more than the data given above. However, the prospects for Indian workers securing employment in large numbers in the country have not been evaluated seriously. Morocco

The exclusive ‘Indian Trade Expo’ held in Casablanca, Morocco, in April 1996, marked a major India and Libya Bilateral Trade initiative to promote bilateral commercial exchanges between India and Morocco. (US$ million) The Deputy Chairperson of the Rajya S No. Country Export Import Sabha visited Morocco on the occasion. 2005-2006 2006-2007 2005-2006 2006-2007 The visit of Morocco’s External Commerce Minister to India in 3 Libya 103.29 43.45 11.94 53.01

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A F R I C A

Q U A R T E R L Y

Bilateral Trade Statistics between India and Morocco (in US$ million) 2000

2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

India’s Exports

53.73

66.06

87.80

156.85

127.21

159.58

183.80

India’s Imports

320.20

252.56

308.00

281.74

350.16

459.48

528.00

Total

373.93

318.62

395.80

438.59

477.37

619.06

711.80

Source: Statistic Bulletin of Office des Change, Government of Morocco

December 1996 also ensured the momentum of bilateral trade. India’s exports to Morocco have risen from $127.5 million in 2005-06 to $164.2 million in 2006-07, thus improving by 29 percent. Man-made filaments, vehicles and cotton have been important items in India’s exports to Morocco. Export of manmade filaments from India to Morocco increased from $17 million in 2005-06 to $24.8 million in 2006-07, thus growing by 45.7 percent. Export of vehicles from India to Morocco also increased from $17.2 million in 2005-06 to $23.2 million in 2006-07, thus improving by 34.7 percent. India’s export of cotton to Morocco increased from $14 million in 2005-06 to $ 21.7 million in 2006-07, thus growing by 54.7 percent during this period. India’s imports from Morocco rose from $456.4 million in 2005-06 to $490.9 million in 2006-07, thus growing by 7.6 percent. Relations with Morocco has seen qualitative enhancement over time. In 1999, then Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee visited Morocco. During the visit, a Bilateral Investment Protection Agreement, a Tourism Co-operation Agreement and an agreement between Press Trust of India (PTI) and Maghreb Arab Presse (MAP) for mutual professional co-operation were signed. India-Morocco Joint Economic Council (IMJEC) The India-Morocco Joint Economic Council (IMJEC), set up in 1999 at the instance of India’s Ministry of External Affairs and Morocco’s Ministry of International Trade & Investment to promote industrial cooperation between the two countries with key focus on the private sector has held three joint meetings - in New Delhi (February 2001), Casablanca (June 2001) and New Delhi (December 2004). The Council has proved to be a useful mechanism for interaction between Indian and Moroccan companies. The Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and Confederation of Moroccan Enterprises (CGEM) together coordinate the activities of IMJEC. Tunisia For centuries, Tunisian merchants have been familiar with India as they conducted trade with many Indian rulers. When Portuguese navigator Vasco da Gama landed in Calicut in Kerala in 1498 he was surprised to meet Tunisian merchants there. In Calicut, the Portuguese captain took into his service a Tunisian Muslim and a Spanish Jew from whom he learned some of the intricacies of local business. Historically, IndoTunisian relations have been friendly and free of discord.

Tunisian leaders acknowledge with appreciation the strong support that India extended to it in its struggle for freedom. In fact, old-time Tunisians still refer to Mahatma Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru as inspiring figures. Indo-Tunisian economic and commercial exchanges consist mainly of trading in primary commodities though trade between the two countries has expanded considerably. An Indian Mission was set up in Tunis in 1963, with the first resident Ambassador being posted in 1978. The Tunisians opened their first resident Mission in New Delhi in 1981. Indo-Tunisian relations have been cordial but without significant political or economic content. Important Bilateral Treaties and Agreements: In 1995, a ‘Joint Declaration on Combating International Terrorism, Drug Trafficking and Organised Crime’ was signed between India and Tunisia, while earlier in 1994 the two countries signed a commercial agreement. A Civil Aviation Agreement between India and Tunisia on bilateral air services and other matters has now been pending. An MoU on agriculture, dormant for many years, has now been reactivated while an MoU on cooperation in the field of development of small-scale industries is in place between the two countries. Commercial and Economic Relations: The items exported to Tunisia are tea, spices, cotton and synthetic yarn, rubber products, basic chemicals, plastics and linoleum products, leather products, engineering goods and transport equipment. Bharat Earth Movers Ltd. (BEML), Bangalore, has been supplying heavy-duty dumpers to the phosphate mines of CPG, a Tunisian company, for the last five-six years. KEC Limited, Mumbai, has been awarded a contract for construction of 600km 225-KV transmission line, worth over $50 million, between Libya and Tunisia. Kudremukh Iron Ore Limited, too, is participating in the El Fouladh International tender for supply of 50,000 mt iron pellets. Tata Group company Telco is in an advanced stage of concluding an agreement with Dalmas, the motor division of the El Mzabi group of companies, for appointing them as their agent in Tunisia as well as setting up an assembly plant for light commercial vehicles. Chennai-based Sanmar Footwear Ltd has selected a local Tunisian shoe company for manufacturing shoes for the British market. The state monopoly for import of tobacco in Tunisia, Regie Nationale des Tabacs et des Allumettes (RNTA), has decided to import 400 tonnes of tobacco from Best India Group. Also, Tunisian authorities are holding discussions with Tisco and GSFC to set up a fertiliser joint venture in Tunisia. BHEL, too, is proposing to set up ‘solar energy’ projects in Tunisia.

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One of the key reasons for Tunisia’s recently acquired eco- India-Tunisia Joint Business Group nomic prosperity is the success of various schemes set up to attract investment, such as investment guarantee schemes, To facilitate close and regular interaction between the prischemes for suspension of double taxation, duty-free access for vate sectors in the two countries, the CII persuaded both the industrial products, and preferential access for agricultural governments to form the India-Tunisia Joint Business Group, products. Tunisia’s economic prosperity is being fostered by and an agreement was signed in Delhi on December 7, 2000 the combined effects of large-scale privatisation, globalisation in the presence of the Foreign Minister of Tunisia, Habib Ben and diversification. Of late, India’s exports to Tunisia have Yahia. The first joint meeting of ITJBG was held in Tunis in been showing a marginally downward trend with the trade bal- June 2001. ance presently in favour of Tunisia. The top items of Indian export are cotton yarn, fabric, man-made yarn and fabric, Indo-Tunisian Trade machinery and instruments, plastic and linoleum products, un-manufactured tobacco, finished leather and leather India’s exports to Tunisia have increased from $74.43 milfootwear components, and marine products. The main item lion in 2005 to $79.70 million in 2006. On the other hand, of Indian import from Tunisia in 2004-05 was inorganic India’s imports from Tunisia have risen from $94.90 million chemical (phosphate). in 2005 to $101.11 million in 2006. The main export items of Given our potential for export and the fact that import of India to Tunisia in 2005-06 include made-up cotton yarn fabfabrics by Tunisia is a critical component of its exports in ric ($13.90 million), prepared feathers and down and articles clothing, there is tremendous scope for improvement by India. made of feathers ($7.33 million), man-made staple fibers It would also be pertinent to mention here that a lot of textiles and fabrics imported India and Tunisia Bilateral Trade by Tunisia from European Union are of (US$ million) Asian origin. Country Export Import India and Tunisia have established joint 2005-2006 2006-2007 2005-2006 2006-2007 working groups on drugs and pharmaceuticals. The second meeting of the Tunisia 82.57 47.94 101.15 91.46 India-Tunisia Joint Working Group on Drugs & Pharmaceuticals was held on ($7.23 million), plastic and articles thereof ($6.46 million), April 5, 2005 and thereafter on April 8, 2005 in Tunis. A Buyer- fish and crustaceans ($6.22 million), raw hides and skins ($5.98 Seller meet was also organised on April 6, 2005. After detailed million). discussions on these issues in the Agenda, both sides agreed Important items of India’s import from Tunisia in 2005-06 on the following issues: are inorganic chemicals ($85.05 million), aluminum and arti1. Supply opportunities and the tie-ups in the case of active cles thereof ($0.38 million), iron and steel ($0.35 million), pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) and formulations between and electrical machinery ($0.27 million). India’s trade deficit, Tunisian and Indian companies which was $20.47 million in 2005 increased slightly to $21.42 2. Registration of Indian medicines million in 2006. 3. Technology cooperation between Tunisian and Indian India’s imports from Tunisia were reported at $144.1 milpharma companies lion in 2006-07. Diphosphorous pent oxide phosphoric acid 4. Cooperation in manufacturing through joint ventures and petroleum oils other than crude were important items of 5. Cooperation in the field of human resource develop- India’s imports from Tunisia. ment and training Thus it is found that petroleum oil crude, petroleum oil 6. Cooperation in using testing facilities at NIPER other than crude, phosphate crude and phosphate fertilisers 7. Cooperation in the field of biotechnology have been the main items of India’s imports from the Maghreb 8. Participation in trade fairs and exhibitions countries. Coromandal Fertilisers Ltd. (CFL) and Gujarat 9. An MoU between Pharmexcil and the National Chamber State Fertilizers Corporation Ltd. (GSFL) entered into a joint of Drug Industries in Tunisia. venture agreement with Tunisian major Groupe Chimique Under the aegis of the Joint Working Group on Drugs & Tinisien (GCT) to set up a phosphoric acid unit with an Pharmaceuticals, the Tunisian Government has given per- investment of $180 million. mission to five Indian companies to register their products in Indian companies have made a small but significant entry Tunisia. At the second meeting of the Indo-Tunisia Joint into these economies. However, these initiatives have to conWorking Group on Drugs and Pharmaceuticals held in Tunis tinue and broaden. in April 2005, important decisions to form joint ventures in The impediments for higher levels of cooperation between the drugs and pharma sector and cooperation in using testing India and the Maghreb have to be identified and removed facilities were taken. At the third meeting of the working group both at the government level and the private sector level. held in November 2005 in New Delhi it was decided to col- India’s exports to Tunisia also grew from $82.6 million in laborate in developing new molecules, enable technology- 2005-06 to $109.3 million in 2006-07, thus increasing by over transfers, and forge joint ventures. 32 percent.

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A F R I C A Conclusion With its long record of supporting African anti-colonial and anti-apartheid struggles, even before India’s independence, the new Indian focus on Africa is not merely on trade, energy or agriculture. It is being built on the principles of partnership and cooperation so as to share the fruits of India’s development achievements in all fields. With a booming economy and as an emerging major economic player, India with tremendous goodwill among the Africans, both have resolved to work for mutual growth and expansion. At the recent India-Africa Project Partnership 2008, India’s External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee said: “India has made strides in manufacturing and technology by pursuing a model of development that is appropriate, affordable and relevant in the African context. We are committed to continuing our support in areas of our strength, including human resource development and capacity building programsmes.” Thus, with their long shared history and numerous opportunities for sharing resources both can emerge as major players in global affairs. Interestingly, India’s Africa diplomacy has focused on developing Africa’s human resource development through the flagship Indian Technical and Economic Cooperation Programme (ITEC) under which about 40,000 Africans have got education in Indian universities/institutions through scholarships while more than $1.5 billion has been earmarked for future scholarships. Africans who have studied in India occupy key positions in many African states especially in Nigeria and Ethiopia among others - and are also ambassadors of Indian culture as well. Projects such as the Pan-African eNetwork are other examples of India’s efforts in sharing its progress in the knowledge sector and in helping to bridge the digital divide in Africa. It was unveiled by India’s former President A.P.J. Kalam in 2004 and has since become operational in Ethiopia with a regional hub in Senegal. Ethiopia’s five major universities are linked to 12 universities in India. Moreover, five super-specialty hospitals in Africa will be linked to 12 super-specialty hospitals in India. Also, India is committed to building a hospital and an educational institute in each of the 54 African states. As Anand Sharma, Minister of State for External Affairs, recently said “This is truly a revolutionary step to help Africa bridge the digital divide and also for telemedicine and tele-education.” He further added: “The goal of India is partnership in mult-sectoral priority areas in which we will engage. These include agriculture, food security, health infrastructure, development, science and technology, generics, capacity building and industrialisation”. India is also one of the largest contributors to UN peacekeeping operations in Africa. India’s efforts are mainly geared towards capacity building, utilisation of local resources, generating capital and employment as well as value addition. Also concessional lines of credit, technical cooperation programmes and deputation of experts are other aspects of India’s diplomacy in Africa. All of this should lead to development and industrialisation of Africa. India’s trade with Africa reached $25 billion in 2006-07 and

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as External Affairs Minister said “our trade flows are still to achieve the true potential”. With emphasis being on increased trade and investment, and having signed trade agreements with over 29 African states, India is looking forward to signing a Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (CECA). Also negotiations are on going as well for a Preferential Trade Agreement with the Southern African Customs Union. Concerning energy security, India’s oil imports are growing due to rapid economic growth, and with Africa controlling nearly 12 per cent of global oil supplies is fast emerging as a crucial region. Already Nigeria has become India’s second largest source of imported crude petroleum. Algeria, Libya, Sudan, Egypt and others are emerging as India’s other oil suppliers. The United States has already invested more than $40 billion in the region from Gabon to Angola and with another $31 billion expected up to 2010. Also, India plans to directly import rough diamonds from Africa instead of Europe. Along with Botswana and South Africa — the world’s two largest diamond-producing nations, India has initiated talks with Namibia and Angola as well to import raw diamonds. India is the world’s largest importer of rough diamonds and exporter of cut and polished diamonds with over 90 percent market share. India imports rough diamonds around $10 billion and exports of cut and polished diamonds are likely to cross the $14-billion mark. India’s cashew processing industry, another employment intensive industry depends crucially on imports of over 500,000 tonnes of raw cashew from Africa. To conclude, there is need for establishment of a separate ministry to address cooperation with Africa. The new ministry should coordinate all programmes related to India’s development activities with Africa. Secondly, there is need for more high-level visits to Africa as close political ties are crucial for all round progress. Visits by top Indian leadership to Maghreb countries have been few and far between. In fact, no Indian top leader has been to Maghreb for more than 10 years. The relationship should be based on mutual trust and a genuine desire for friendship and both should work honestly for mutual growth. Thirdly, India should consider increasing economic aid and share its indigenous technology in the field of small and medium enterprises so as to generate more jobs and help Africans who are striving to ‘close the chapter of poverty’. In all of these ventures, India’s private sector has been assigned a key role in India’s Africa diplomacy. Already Tata, Infosys and Satyam, among many others, have a presence in Africa even as the Indian government actively seeks private sector participation in its Africa policy. Both India and Africa face common challenges — of eliminating poverty and building infrastructure and connectivity through low-cost, appropriate technology suited to local conditions. These common challenges can be converted into opportunities for both by enhancing economic cooperation and joint partnerships. There is also a need to build a ‘human bridge’ by encouraging deeper cultural interaction through more Indian cultural centres and greater involvement of the Indian community in Africa. ■

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P O S I T I O N

The need for a PAN-AFRICAN outlook Egypt’s vision encompasses the whole of Africa as it acts in concert with fellow nations to help secure peace and development in the continent, says AMBASSADOR MOHAMED HIGAZI

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frica has been a key focus of Egyptian foreign policy since the 1952 revolution when Egypt began mobilising to help African countries achieve liberation from the yoke of imperialism. In the 1960s and through the 1970s, Egypt was at the forefront helping fellow nations gain independence. Following liberation, Egypt intensified efforts to group African countries into one body to serve the interests of the African people. These efforts resulted in the establishment of the Organisation of African Unity (OAU) in 1963. Egypt sustained its initiatives through the 1980s and 1990s, during its presidency of the 25th Session of OAU, in its quest to eliminate racial discrimination in Namibia and South Africa. Towards this end, Egypt despatched a peacekeeping force

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to take part in supervising elections in Namibia and participated in drafting the Harare Declaration of August 1989, which called for an end to apartheid in South Africa and appealed to peace-lovers throughout the world to push for the release of political prisoners, particularly Nelson Mandela. Around 50 Egyptian experts were also on hand observing elections in South Africa. Egypt and other African nations have been working together to seek the best means to fulfil the aspirations of the African peoples. Under the chairmanship of President Hosni Mubarak of the OAU in 1998-1990 and 1993-1994, the organisation succeeded in establishing a dispute-solving mechanism to reach peaceful solutions to African disputes. Egypt also established a centre to train African cadres to adjudicate African disputes and carry out peacekeeping operations in the continent. In November 1995, Egypt played host

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A F R I C A to a summit where Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi and Tanzania discussed the issue of refugees in both Rwanda and Burundi as also the means of achieving peace between the disputing parties in the continent. Egypt also joined the Francophone Organisation in the same year as a representative of North African countries during a summit held in Benin. Egypt also played a prominent role in establishing the African Union to replace the OAU in a serious effort to solve the political, economic and social problems of Africa. At the economic level, Egypt has paid special attention to solving the issue of African debts. It has put forward a number of proposals to write off part of the African debts and reschedule the remaining part while urging the World Bank to play a more robust role in achieving economic development in the African continent. Egypt has also offered technical assistance and scholarships to African countries through the Egyptian Fund for Technical Cooperation with Africa. Egypt and Africa’s Debt With the 1980 figure for Africa’s debt calculated at fives times that of the 1970s, Egypt has exerted its utmost to solve the problem. So far, it has submitted a number of proposals, all designed to ease off the burden of the continent’s debt. These include: ! The writing-off by rich countries of some of Africa’s debts, especially military debts ! Long-term rescheduling of debts ! Reducing interest rates ! IMF compensation for the balance of payments of crisis-hit African countries and World Bank contribution to development projects ! The convening of an international conference of rich and donor countries as well as regional and international funding agencies with the ultimate purpose of alleviating the burden of Africa’s debts ! Revitalising the process of export-geared production Egypt and COMESA The Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa is considered one of the fundamental pillars of the African economic collective. Set up at the Abuja Summit of 1991, the bloc

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sought to terminate all trade restrictions among member states in preparation for the establishment of economic unity in the region. Since Egypt joined the bloc in 1999, it has played a vital and axial role in activating and developing the mechanisms of COMESA besides participating in the activities and programmes of the bloc. Egypt also hosts the headquarters of the COMESA regional investment agency at the headquarters of the General Authority for Investment and Free Zones. In May 2001, Egypt hosted the bloc’s summit in Cairo. In the hope of setting up a free trade zone among COMESA countries as a prelude to the establishment of a common market, Egypt joined the COMESA free trade zone that was announced at the Lusaka Summit in 2000. Eleven out of 20 member countries have joined it till now. Egypt’s membership in COMESA has contributed to an increase in trade between Egypt and the rest of the member-states. The following study shows an aspect of the economic profit, which Egypt gains as a result of its membership in the bloc, according to COMESA statistics. Egypt and NEPAD Africa has been plagued by the entrenchment of a vicious cycle, in which economic decline, reduced capacity and poor governance reinforce each other, thus confirming Africa’s peripheral and diminishing role in the world economy and world affairs in general. Thus, African leaders have reached the conclusion that a holistic, integrated and coordinated approach that tackles the root causes of Africa’s backwardness is needed. The New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) was designed as a vision that aims at breaking this vicious cycle of poverty, underdevelopment and

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marginalisation that Africa has suffered for decades. Egypt, Algeria, Nigeria and South Africa took the initiative, holding a series of experts’ meetings in 2001 to draft a programme for Africa’s development, which was named the ‘Millennium Partnership for African Recovery Programme-MAP’. Meanwhile, Senegal proposed another ambition development plan known as ‘Omega’. Egypt hosted the Steering Committee meeting in Cairo in June 2001, with experts from the five nations (Egypt, Nigeria, Algeria, South Africa, Senegal) participating. The meeting succeeded in integrating the two initiatives under the name ‘New African Initiative’, which was later on unanimously adopted by the 37th OAU Summit held in Lusaka, Zambia, as the continent’s socio-economic development programme. The name was subsequently changed to NEPAD. The summit endorsed the NEPAD vision and policy framework document that covers several sectoral priorities as follows: Peace and Security; Democracy and Good Political, Economic and Corporate Governance; Health; Agriculture; Market Access; Infrastructure; Education; and Environment.

table discussion, held to introduce NEPAD to the world community, and to discuss possible mechanisms and channels to support its implementation. ! Egypt’s People’s Assembly has established a Parliamentarian NEPAD Commission aiming at providing support and momentum to the initiative at the national as well as continental and international levels. ! Egypt participated in the activities of ‘Africa Partnership Forum’. The forum aims at establishing a new partnership between Africa and its development partners based on the principles of “shared responsibility” and “mutual accountability”. It focuses on providing practical and genuine support to the process of implementation of NEPAD programmes. ! Egypt’s Ministry of Transport has prepared a list of proposals of regional transport projects. This list has been submitted to relevant regional economic communities (COMESA, Cen/Sad), NEPAD Secretariat and relevant technical partners (ADB) for assessment prior to inclusion within the NEPAD infrastructure programme of action. ! Role in the process of operationalisation of CAADP: Egypt’s Role in the Initiative (a) Egypt is responsible for coordinating the agriculture file within ! Egypt has actively participated in NEPAD. In this capacity, Egypt has the preparatory technical meetings effectively participated in the forEgypt has paid special that helped shape the basic docuof the Comprehensive attention to solving the issue mulation ment of the initiative, later on adoptAfrica Agricultural Development of African debts. It has put Programme as well as in all meeted by the OAU Lusaka Summit in 2001. forward proposals to write off ings held to formulate programmes ! President Mubarak participated and plans for its implementation, in part of the debts and in the meeting held in Paris on addition to its membership in the reschedule the remaining CAADP Support Group. February 28, 2002, on the invitation of President Jacques Chirac of while urging the World Bank (b) The Ministry of Agriculture France. Several African heads of state has prepared a list of projects that to play a more robust role was later submitted to the regional and government, as well as the Prime in achieving economic Minister of Canada, attended the economic communities Egypt is meeting. African and world leaders member of, for their inclusion development in Africa. discussed the means to provide supwithin their programmes and hence port to the ambitious NEPAD plans to be implemented within of action in preparation for the 2002 G-8 Kananaskis Summit. NEPAD. ! President Mubarak participated in the 2003 Evian Summit, (c) Egypt hosted an African Expert Meeting from March 30 attended by G-8 leaders and emerging economy countries, as to April 1, 2003, which tackled, among other issues, obstacles well as leaders of the other four African founders of NEPAD. facing African agricultural exports to international markets, as He delivered a statement focusing on sectoral priorities of well as the formulation of a common African position with NEPAD stressing on the importance of addressing the issue regard to liberalising the agriculture sector in the ongoing of market access — that is, allowing African exports better multilateral trade negotiations. access to international markets. He also pointed out the ques(d) The Egyptian Ministry of Agriculture, in collaboration tion of access to medicine, and its crucial consequences for with FAO, has organised a number of national workshops to socio-economic development in the continent. introduce CAADP to different stakeholders on the national ! Egypt participated in the United Nations General level, and to align national projects with the guidelines of Assembly high-level dialogue in September 2002. The CAADP. Minister of Foreign Affairs of Egypt co-chaired the round(e) The Ministry has also concluded a Technical

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A F R I C A Cooperation Protocol with UNFAO to fund studies on designing short-to medium-term investment projects to be implemented within the framework of CAADP. (f) Egypt hosted a workshop on aqua-culture within the plan of action related to the fisheries sector of CAADP. This workshop is one of a series of meetings and workshops held in preparation to the upcoming Abuja ‘Fish For All’ Summit, expected to take place in February 2009. ! Egypt being one of the founding five countries of NEPAD also acts as a coordinator for the “Market Access” file. In this capacity, Egypt hosted an African expert meeting from March 30 to April 1, 2003, for deliberations on topics in the multilateral trade negotiations agenda, so as to formulate a common African position. Recommendations of this meeting were later submitted to the African Ministers of Trade Conference, which took place in Maputo in July 2003. These recommendations were also taken into consideration in the process of Preparation for the WTO-Ministerial Conference, held in Cancun in September 2003. Egypt’s Support for Africa’s Hopes and Aspirations Egypt continues to sustain its efforts to support and follow up on the African causes presented before the United Nations, and this stems from Egypt’s African roots and its firm ties with the African continent. Egypt has played an important role within the framework of the African group in the United Nations, which aims at defining the broad lines for joint African stances. Egypt also participated, within the framework of its keenness about protecting African interests, in all expert meetings that tackled African issues, during which the detailed and technical aspects of UN resolutions were discussed. Stemming from the importance of coordinating African stances with those of developing countries, Egypt was keen about coordinating African positions on the issues tackled by the organisation in 2006 with developing country groupings, such as the Non-Aligned Movement and the Organisation of Islamic Conference to achieve the maximum benefit for developing countries in general and Africa in particular. Egypt also closely followed issues related to peace, security and peace-building in the African continent, which have occupied a large portion of the UN agenda, and has also focused on employing Egyptian expertise in serving the organisation’s programmes and activities, while giving priority to countries within the Islamic belt, the Horn of Africa, the Great Lakes and the Nile basin. Egypt continues its keen pursuit within the UN to strengthen its contribution to peacekeeping and rebuilding in Africa through United Nations programmes in the field of security reform, as well as training, rehabilitation and building capabilities of the national police forces in countries emerging from conflicts, which includes the Democratic Republic of Congo, Burundi and Liberia. Egypt nurtures and supports Africa’s hopes and aspirations on issues like combating desertification, and addressing environmental issues with the conviction that its aims and destiny are the same as that of the continent. Egypt was thus keen on

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obtaining the membership of the Peace Building Committee, and effectively participating in negotiations on resolutions regarding the cooperation between the African Union and the United Nations and the international support of the NEPAD initiative, and the resolution relating to humanitarian and economic aid to African countries. Egypt to Host a Number of Summits in 2008 and 2009 Egypt regards the Egyptian-African relations a foreign policy priority and relentlessly works towards developing and promoting them, since President Mubarak’s electoral programme included specific directives to enhance ties with African countries on all levels. These efforts were crowned by the participation of President Mubarak in the latest AU Summit, held in Accra, in July 2007. Hence, Egypt will be hosting a number of African and international conferences and summits during 2008 and 2009, some of which are the African Union summit in Sharm El-Sheikh in July 2008 and the African-Chinese Forum. The Egyptian demarches in the African continent have witnessed obvious activity during the period from July 2006 to July 2007, since Egypt and the African countries exchanged around 44 official visits involving African governmental officials and private sectors representatives, and an Egyptian assistant minister and representatives of the private sector. Egypt also received the chairman of the AU Commission, Professor Alpha Omar Konaré, COMESA Secretary-General Erastus Mwencha, the Secretary of the Economic Commission for Africa, and the Commissioner of African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights, in addition to a number of commissioners at the AU and COMESA Secretariats. Senior diplomats and officials including the Egyptian assistant foreign minister for African Affairs, and the secretary-general of the Egyptian Fund for Technical Cooperation with Africa have during the past couple of years conducted more than 14 tours in Africa to emphasise the significance of all African countries to Egypt. Egypt acts as a mediator, endorsing regional and international efforts to end tension in Africa, while seeking to enhance preemptive diplomacy and promote commercial and economic relations. Egypt has a comprehensive foreign policy orientation in Africa since it works on both bilateral and multilateral tracks simultaneously. Egypt has hosted more than 20 African ministerial conferences and meetings during 2006, within the framework of its membership in the African institutions and blocs, such as the AU, COMESA, CEN-SAD, and the Regional Centre for Combating Disasters in Africa. The Egyptian efforts exerted in the past couple of years are a continuation of the activities the country had set out to do several decades ago, when Egypt managed to initiate five initiatives in Africa in the fields of health, education, technology, media, and others. Egypt also participated in founding and launching the NEPAD initiative, joined the African Peace and Security Council, the Pan-African Parliament, and ratified all the agreements for establishing the African Union, and its bodies and institutions. ■

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WIRING Africa to the world New technology has the potential to catapult Africa’s resource-strapped educational systems into the modern age. All it needs to do is to just log in, says SURESH KUMAR

T

he world is changing at a rapid pace, and the scope and impact of the change has inferences beyond geographical and cultural borders. The change calls for a new paradigm that puts people at the centre of development, regards economic growth as a means and not an end, protects the life opportunities of future generations as well as the present, and respects the natural systems upon which all life depends. It has long been acknowledged that the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) sector is central to development and globalisation. And it is no different in Africa. However, it is East Africa that has made some headway in bridging the digital divide with a leadership that has laid considerable emphasis on telecommunications. The expansion of fixed and mobile telephone services coupled with narrow and broadband internet access through satellite linkup, which is principally aimed at enhancing information services for education, health, economic and financial sector, banking, trade,

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investment, links with heads of state, and people to people communication, can help forge a Pan-Africa network. The digital boom in East Africa is just the beginning. The region has made rapid progress in education, global communication and transportation thanks to the ICT plan and this is exactly the model that needs to be duplicated in all African countries. ICT brings about a global equalisation of expectations, resulting from improvements in education, global communication, and transportation that spur human resource development (HRD) efforts in East Africa. Despite all the hostilities in the political arena in East Africa, this region can indeed work together with other African countries. East Africa is fighting poverty, illiteracy, war, and human and natural disasters. Access to education and technology is key and in this regard African universities have a crucial role to play. The universities of Addis Ababa (Ethiopia), Asmara (Eritrea), Khartoum (Sudan), Mogadishu (Somalia), Djibouti, Nairobi (Kenya) are therefore the best laboratories of the ICT revolution. Educational institutions in Ethiopia, particularly agricul-

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A F R I C A tural, medical, engineering, veterinary, polytechnic and social sciences institutions, such as Addis Ababa University, Alemaya University, Alemaya University of Agriculture, Arba Minch University, Bahir-Dar Polytechnic Institute, Institute of Biodiversity Conservation and Research, Jimma Institute of Health Sciences, Jimma Junior College of Agriculture, Jimma University, Mekelle University and Yared Music School should be connected through a Pan-Africa network that can, in turn, link up with the region and the world. However, in Eritrea, institutions such as Eritrea Institute of Technology, Mai Nefhi, College of Agriculture in Hamelmalo, Keren, College of Health Sciences and Orota School of Medicine in Asmara, College of Marine Sciences and Technology in Hirgigo, Massawa, College of Arts & Social Sciences, Adi Kieh, and College of Business and Economics, Massawa, are in the process of putting in place inter-regional connectivity and stand to gain under a Pan-Africa scheme. The University of Khartoum, Sudan, and its affiliates like Ahfad University for Women and Sudan University for Science and Technology are expanding its reach in the country through this network and are helping to link up east, southern and west Sudan. Somalian institutions such as Amoud University, Benadir University, Gollis College, Hargeisa University, Mogadishu University, Somali Institute of Management & Administration Development and East African University - Bosaaso, Puntland, have been victims of political instability but all Somali groups today use ICT and

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share information with the outside world. Djibouti, despite being a small country in east Africa, makes good use of the Pan-Africa network and connects itself with the rest of the region while sharing information regarding sustainable development through Université de Djibouti, Faculté de Droit Economie, Gestion, Faculté des Sciences, Faculté des Lettres, and Langues et Sciences Humaines. On the other hand, Kenya’s higher education system, comprised of Africa Nazarene University, the Catholic University of Eastern Africa, Daystar University, Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology, Kenyatta University, Maseno University College, Moi University, United States International University, University of Eastern Africa Baraton and University of Nairobi, has suffered on account of political instability in the country. ICT can be a subversive medium to fight poverty, illiteracy and socio-economic instability and bring about stable governance and subsistence, more so in East Africa. The PanAfrica network focuses on human capital development keeping in view the future of knowledge-based world economies and is persuading this region to introduce computer and information technology (IT) in all secondary schools to help promote critical and creative thinking, problem solving and teamdriven skills. In fact, there is provision for in-service training, pre-service training and exposure to computers for high school teachers. ICT as a subject in all secondary schools together with supporting technical, pedagogical and management train-

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The Pan-African Network (PAN) aims to bridge the digital divide in Africa Continent and bring tele-education and telemedicine services to the member countries of the African Union (AU). India’s former President Dr. A. P. J. Abdul Kalam announced the willingness of government of India to provide seamless and integrated satellite, fiber optics and wireless network connecting 53 African countries, including Eritrea, during the Pan African Parliament, Johannesburg, on 16 Sept 2004. The PAN assignment, estimated cost of about US $105 million, will be carried out through a grant from the government of India (GOI). PAN connects AU members through a satellite and fiber optic network, which would provide effective tele-education, telemedicine, and VOIP services (Direct connection between Heads of States). It strengthens e-governance, e-commerce, infotainment, resource mapping and meteorological services. India’s Ministry of External Affairs and Telecommunications Consultants India Limited (TCIL) are supervising this project. Different AU member countries like Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cote d'Ivoire (Ivory Coast), Djibouti, Former President of India, Dr. A. P. J. Abdul Kalam, addressing the PanEthiopia, Gambia, Ghana, Mauritius, Tanzania, Senegal and African Parliament in 2004 where he unveiled the idea of a Pan-Afrcian Seychelles are among others who have signed the agreements e-network. ing will support the process and strengthen the process of with TCIL. The hub for the network is located in Ethiopia, east of Africa. The proposed network will link five regional Pan-Africa network in East Africa. universities, 53 learning centers, 5 regional super specialty hospitals and 53 remote hospitals from African countries and Pan-Africa Network and Information Technology 6 universities and 5 super specialty hospitals from India will in the network (http://www.tcilICT can play a crucial role in furthering and enhancing coordinate india.com/new/html/PANAfrica.html). North East Africa, sustainable development. Everywhere in the developing particularly Ethiopia has already been started a pilot project and world, especially in East Africa, governments are launching will be the first beneficiary of the PAN project. ambitious ICT infrastructure initiatives, radically changing The ICT experiment testing is already done in this directheir communications policy frameworks and situating ICT tion to strengthen connectivity of all African countries. This at the heart of their self-reliance movement as a strategy. ICT will provide three connectivity channels like (i) Heads of the has become an indispensable tool in the fight against poverty State Network for e-governance, (ii) Tele-education network in East Africa. ICT provides developing nations with an for higher education, skill enhancement and capacity buildunprecedented opportunity to meet vital development goals ing, and (iii) Tele-medicine for providing health care and such as poverty reduction, basic healthcare, and education, far super specialty medicare. This network will be in place by early more effectively than before. Those nations that succeed in 2007. Eritrea as a part of east Africa should concentrate as part harnessing the potential of ICT can look forward to accelerof human development on the following aspects like: ating economic growth, dramatically improved human welfare and stronger forms of democratic governance. ICT in „ Eradication of poverty changing world and Africa should identify specific policy pre„ Universal primary education scriptions undertaken by countries illustrating the application „ Gender equality and empowerment of women of ICT tools and strategies for income generation and human „ Reducing the child mortality poverty eradication, enhancing economic opportunities and „ Improvement of maternal health reducing the gap in social equity. It focuses on human devel„ The development of a regional partnership for opment, which meets UNDP mandate in the area for develdevelopment opment by concretely promoting human development and eradicating poverty. Human development resumes its centrality and freedom becomes the principal means and ends of The HRD Efforts in ICT in Eastern Africa development. Amartya Sen observed that it would become The Human Resource Development Ministry of different essential to “develop and support a plurality of institutions, countries in eastern Africa is looking forward to equip their including democratic systems, legal mechanisms, market ministry with the Pan Africa network. The government of structure, educational and health provisions, media insight Eritrea recognises that globalisation is a reality, and if Eritrea and framework to reinstate freedom at the core of human is to benefit and prosper in a global economy, the country must development initiatives” [Sen, A, Development As Freedom, empower its citizens with the knowledge, skills and attitudes Knopf, New York, 1999].

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A F R I C A to compete in the global market. Education is the chief mechanism of government to build a responsive citizenry. In a rapidly changing world, education must be flexible and adaptable to change, and must also recognise and respond to the human resource capacity needs both domestically and internationally. (Framework for Integration of ICT, National Curriculum of Eritrea, Ministry of Education, Eritrea, July 2005:1). Osman Saleh, former minister of education and present foreign minister, has fleshed out his over all vision of ICT in Education, which lays the foundation of recent policy directives and the National Feasibility Study for ICT in Education. The HRD Ministry in Ethiopia is in the process of connecting its universities and other education institutions under the Pan Africa network. Similarly, the Khartoum University and Djibouti University and Nairobi are working in this direction. The education in east Africa highlights the following features such as: „ ICT in education as a key contributor to improving the quality of education in eastern Africa, and engendering lifelong learning skills, such as information processing, critical thinking and problem solving. „ ICT will be integrated both vertically and horizontally through out the educational provision of Eritrea, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Sudan, Somalia and Kenya. „ Top priority may be given to providing people with special needs, and girls access to ICT in remote areas of the country. „ ICT will be utilised to support training and continued professional development of teachers, management and operations staff, and the public at large in this region. Most of the east African countries are developing a new national curriculum in all sub-sectors of education. The ministries of education, in eastern Africa sees ICT as an integral part of the education experience, and envisions ICT at all levels and across all subjects in the curriculum. Courses will be developed primarily by the Department of General Education (DGE) with assistance from teachers who have developed their own curriculum, and will cover basic operations of computers, and a variety of productivity software. Secondary and technical schools either have computers labs, or will be the first to receive them. Currently, the integrated ICT in education is initiated in this region through: „ Development of a National Policy for ICT in Education „ Feasibility Study for ICT in Education and „ National Curriculum Framework for ICT in Education All three policies will strengthen ICT and the education sector and push forward development policies in a defined policy framework and strategic environment. The budget for Education Sector Development Programme in Eritrea provides ICT programme in Phase-1 is US$ 8044,000, Phase-2 is US$ 4309,000.50 and Phase-3 is

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US$17,480,000.90 (National Feasibility: 67-81). The MoE in eastern Africa is taking the lead to define national policy objectives like identifying important components of effective ICT integration to build awareness among the entire education sector, to outline a cross-sector strategy for pragmatic implementation of the policy to help integrate processes and minimize wastage and to narrow the ‘digital divide’ by addressing key constraints through the use of ICT. 1. Policy for ICT in Education Eastern Africa fully embraces the Millennium Development Goals affirmed by the United Nations and ICT plays an integral part of the process in meeting these goals. These goals are 1) Eradicating poverty and hunger, 2) Universal primary education for all 3) Promoting gender equality an empower women 4) Reducing child mortality, 5) Combating HIV/AIDS, 6) Environmental sustainability and 7) Improving maternal health. 2. National Feasibility Study on ICT in Education The MoE has secured multi-lateral donor funding to support the 5-year planned education capacity development in Eritrea through the World Bank, Africa Development Bank, The Netherlands, Norway and Government of Eritrea (National Feasibility Study on ICT in Education in Eritrea, Ministry of Education, July 2005:5). The ministry of education in eastern Africa may include upgrading of schools and classrooms, expansion of teacher training output, rapid dissemination of ICT facilities and related training in schools. International aid in installation of ICT services can further strengthen this process. Another study conclude that ‘relevant and substantial ICT in education programmes’ can open new digital opportunities for this region. There is a need to train of teachers to use ICT in teaching and administration. The Pan Africa network helps this region in sharing their experiences through an open online community of educators that contribute to ideas, lessons and experiences with the international community. The ICT training programme in this region may begin with the pilot schools, having additional refurbished computers and the countries may approach for the aid and assistance to other friendly countries. For instance, The FAIR is a Norwegian NGO aiding developing countries and supplying computer networks and training. Currently, FAIR is working in Zoba Northern Red Sea in Eritrea, installing network computer labs of 50 computers in 4 secondary schools, and 3 middle secondary schools. By 2005/2006, all 7 FAIR computer labs will be installed, and all teachers trained to administer the lab (National Feasibility: 57-58). 3. Framework for Integration of ICT The Pan Africa network has the larger objective to inform the education community about the application of ICT in education. It needs mutual cooperation of east African coun-

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tries, particularly for first-hand assessment and analysis of the current infrastructure and human resource capacity for installing and using computers for teaching and learning in local secondary schools, to identify cost components important for accurate budget development for procurement, installation, and maintenance of ICT in secondary schools and technical schools and to provide options doer connecting computers to the Internet in secondary schools. This information will link the east African countries with the Indian IT industries (of technocrat and IT educationist and professionals) that may lead to more collaboration in the software and hardware industries. The IT professionals from India may develop computer labs, coordinate, facilitate, and produce multimedia and related ICT materials for education purposes. This may lead to more collaboration between research and education institution of the two sides. The sector-wide implementation of the new curriculum, including ICT, will assist the Pan Africa network in satellite transmission solution for piloting curriculum. It will boost the support system for teachers and learners. Department of computer science in the schools and colleges may initiate short-term courses as part of general education in east Africa and the interested teaching community should provide adequate training by the respective ministries of their countries. It will further strengthen the trained instructors, tutors, or mentors to help in the administration of the distance learning programme, adult literacy awareness campaign and awareness programmes dealing with health, environment, civic issues, agriculture, and programmes for teaching methodology, early childhood education and HIV/AIDS in local languages. The computer training provides job opportunities to unemployed youth on the one side and agricultural programmes in mother tongue will work closely together in developing strategies for implementing ICT into agriculture sector. Pan Africa network will connect this region and assist in developing the series of awareness and orientation seminars and workshops for policy makers to help develop the conceptual framework among educators, especially for application of ICT for teaching and learning in both formal and non-formal sectors of education. It will include a public awareness aspect as well. Today, new technologies are rapidly reshaping the livelihoods of people throughout the world. The Operations Officer for Eritrea Education Sector Development - Program Management Unit (ESDP-PMU) (during his discussion on 09.02.2008), observes, “Teacher professional development in the use of technology in the classroom will enhance and improve the capabilities of teachers through a relevant teacher professional development programmes in the use of technology, including computer literacy skills training and more advanced professional development in the pedagogical application of those skills. Workshops, seminars and short courses (160 hours or more as per the plan) will be developed”. He further emphasises, “The specific training workshops will be held for school directors of the 50 schools targeted under the Eritrea Education Sector Improvement Program (EESIP),

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along with other key administrative personnel at the Zoba and Sub-Zoba levels,” he writes Similarly, the schools (30-50 in number) in individual countries in east Africa may select 1400-2000 students who will be offered a computer laboratory with 25-30 computers

Appraisal Report for ADF Support to ESDP 000 US $ A) Goods

Unit

Nos

Total

Lot

30

19,275

Equipment for workshops Lot (40 workshops @15,000 in 20 schools)

40

19,275

Reference and library books (50 schools @7500)

Lot

50

49,547

Teaching aid materials (50 schools @3,000)

Lot

50

79,819

Computers, software & printers (400 sets @ 1500 for 20 schools

Lot

400

719,275

Equipment for Laboratories (30 labs @ 20,000 in 10 schools)

Total: Goods

2,787,190

Sources: Africa Development Fund, Education Sector Development Programme, June 2004 (Table-1)

and the provision of two laboratories depending on the student strength will be kept. All these schools may benefit through the Pan-Africa network and inter-connects with in east Africa and in whole Africa gradually for their mutual interaction. African Development Fund (ADF) has taken initiative in this direction and provides loan for the procurement of IT and Office Equipment for Secondary schools. East Africa is getting benefits through this loan and Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya and Sudan facilitating computer to their schools respectively. The ADB made the commitment during a joint session with the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) on the Enabling Environment for ICT and Economic Sectors at the ICT Best Practices Forum in the Burkina Faso capital. The bank’s approach with regard to facilitating the development of ICT in Africa is to systematically support member countries that strive to integrate ICT in their projects and their development activities, encourage co-operation, partnerships and the management of regional networks with a view to accentuating local and regional development efforts. Overall, the ADB has provided over 30 countries with more than US$ 1 billion for the financing of information technologies. The Bank has financed national and regional projects and programmes integrating ICT in the health, education, agriculture and rural development sectors. The Bank is supporting Regional Member Countries in formulating and developing ICT projects and reforming public administration with specific emphasis on e-governance and e-commerce. “The ADF project in Eritrea under Education Sector Development Programme equips 30 science laboratories and 40 workshops at a total of 30 schools (Table-1) and by pro-

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A F R I C A

viding 20 computer laboratories and 400 sets of computers to 20 schools. It will also provide reference and library books, as well as teaching aids for 50 schools. To enhance the quality of teaching at the secondary level, the government has embarked on recruiting highly qualified teachers internationally, on a cost-effective basis, to meet rising enrolments as a provisional measure over a 5-year period, pending the training of Eritrean in teacher training institutes and at university level.� It is worth noting that east Africa is using internationally recruited teachers because the number of professionals in the teaching force is not enough. As the trained indigenous people take over the teaching positions, the internationally recruited teachers will be gradually phased out. Based on projections of demand for teachers, the ADF project provides for the financing of teachers/professionals, mainly in the areas of science, math and technology. To optimize the effectiveness teachers, the government will strengthen the present orientation, guidance and counseling already being provided to arriving teachers. The international recruitment of teachers as a transition measure will enable students to gain access to quality education. ICT in Education and its Role in East Africa Society Technical change has helped people in their daily battle for survival. Despite the potential of new technologies to change the livelihoods of people living in poverty, all education institutions should plan to strengthen its limited access to appropriate technologies as well as information and knowledge about technical options. From a long-term perspective, peo-

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ple living in poverty need to be able to adapt and select, and use the technology that suits them according to their own discretion with the help of their children studying for example in schools and colleges. Moreover, all the colleges in east Africa need to provide the computer subject to all disciplines (Arts, Social Science, Commerce and Science) under Introduction to Computer Science facilitating the younger generation. Technology innovations are vital for growth and poverty reduction in developing countries. ICT and human development efforts in east Africa are recognised as a major determinant of economic growth. The irony is that the technologies to meet these needs are growing in this region, but they are not accessible to the people who need them most. The concerned colleges in their respective locations may move in this direction as a case study and advertise short-term orientation courses, certificate, diploma and degree courses in ICT to its students and non-teaching employees. There should be sufficient courses available in nearby villages to create awareness about ICT and its use in agriculture development. The fact that ICT transfer has no direct link to poverty reduction stems from the reality that most poor people do not depend on employment in the formal sector, where Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) is directed. The livelihoods of the great majority of the poor people in developing countries depend on micro and small-scale enterprises. An understanding of the relationship between capability and human development is critical to making technology transfers applicable to poverty reduction. A certain capability to absorb, select and adapt technologies to local settings and to develop new technologies through local innovation must be present for effec-

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tive technology transfer across all levels from teaching institutes to household and national level. At the household level this means a thorough knowledge of information systems and integrated social networks as well as local knowledge in their respective language through colleges/university network (as a major research project/case-cum-area study that may result future direction to the ICT programme and strengthen PanAfrica network). At the regional level, this involves a regional (east Africa) framework under Pan-Africa network that includes innovative systems accommodating a range of institutions and policies. The key focus should be on integrating regional technology policies and innovation systems with poverty reduction strategies. Participatory technology development has proved to be an effective means of choosing the most appropriate technology. Enabling access to new technologies consists of making more productive technologies available through technology transfer and providing an environment, which includes institutional and financial support to the marginalised people. The vital factor is not just bringing new technologies to the door step of the people but addressing their organisational, management and marketing skills, opening new channels of information and knowledge and making credit and markets more accessible.

have access to ICT facilities, including Internet, to enhance their learning through wider access to rich sources of knowledge and information. The process will expand to all levels of the school system. The launch of educational information through the PanAfrica network boosts East Africa’s efforts towards universalising quality education for the rural and remote corners of the country. The network can be used to facilitate education in the majority of the rural poor of this region, who often does not have access to education and women & child development. In this context, distance learning based education can fill the gap created by the lack of formal education. Technology can be a very useful tool as it is able to facilitate distance learning and this method may be used by concerned colleges and universities to reach children and women in rural areas. The transfer of information across various geographies to different types of people at the same time is a very distinct advantage. The crucial factor would be whether rural people have access to these technologies and can afford them. The ongoing education reforms emphasize the importance of school libraries and underlines the need for inculcating information skills among school children. Rural electrification schemes enable new technology to reach all parts of the region. The use of ICT in education will help achieve these goals:

Suggestions and Conclusion

„ Improving the quality of education through PanAfrican Network enhanced instruction „ Increasing access to knowledge for public benefit „ Nurturing knowledge concepts in colleges and university „ Knowledge creation in Science & Technology (S&T) laboratories „ Promoting application of knowledge in our business and industry

East Africa is in a good position to pursue existing opportunities and work to successfully overcome constraints, to effectively introduce and sustain ICT in education. All community organisations (such as students, youth, women, labour, peasants and salaried employees) in this region may incorporate their personal websites and enshrine ICT as a strong component in all its programmes. The community resources of these organisations can be important for capacity building locally, especially for enhancing equity in the community through ICT. The education ministries of all the countries in this region brings international donor funds to increase access, quality, equity and capacity to the sector of education in their respective areas. The donor phased programme for improving education in this region calls for an education ministries network use policy. The Pan-Africa network helps to enrich a culture of ICT sustainability, and is thus an important sustainability strategy for the region. East Africa restates the needs to leverage the benefits of ICTs for achieving universal education and pro-poor growth, particularly in the rural areas. This proposed ICT Unit, under Pan-Africa network, strengthens the educational transformation process under a new education system. This is intended to improve the quality of education by supplementing the student-centered interactive pedagogy with technology. The ultimate goal of introducing ICT in the education system is to use ICT as a tool in the teaching and learning process across all subject areas of the national curriculum. This is to say that all teachers will use ICT to facilitate their teaching and learning in their respective subject areas. Similarly, students will

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„ Using knowledge to improve service delivery in government. The creation of S&T culture is another important role that education ministries of the countries concerned should take necessary initiatives. Programmes can be started at both school level and college level. The education sector programme, media (television, radio and newspapers), publishing (books, journal and web) can be used to create the S&T culture in this region. Technology development is mainly influenced by the country’s education and industry. Various administrative bodies govern these subjects and thus continuous dialogue at the ministerial level is essential for proper transfer of technology. There are four major ways of getting human resources for S&T that are: a) b) c) d)

Technical Institutes Colleges and different universities Migration of qualified people to the country Use of foreign technical personnel (from India as Silicon Valley) and consultancy services

To sum up, poverty continues to be the experience of men and women who are excluded from old and new technologies alike. There is a need to amalgamate technology and people’s need for safe forms of energy supply, shelter, safe water, sanitation and nourishment. This region recognises the importance of technology by targeting it specifically towards the pro-poor population to eliminate poverty through education. Along with it, feedback such as e-mail

Q U A R T E R L Y

(in their regional languages) is essential in order to gauge the impact of poverty reduction strategies on the poor. Besides, the increasing political and social consciousness in the region highlights the issues of elimination of gender-disparity and empowerment of women that are essential for their socio-economic development. The government underlined the urgency of addressing these issues through further affirmative action. East Africa should develop a broadband policy and help enhance internet connectivity, giving rural areas an opportunity to employ ehealth, e-education, e-governance applications under PanAfrica Network, which will bridge the digital divide existing between rural and urban areas. Visual classroom and video resource centres should set up either by different education institutes or by education ministries should be adopted by every school in the village. ICT can be a very effective tool for the dissemination of knowledge to a large number of people. Overall, ICT should cover connectivity issues and access, information programmes in educational institutions, distance education and e-learning initiative to ensure their success in the rural and urban parts of East Africa. It should offer more opportunities to women to advance their cause through the creation of employment and greater awareness that will contribute to gender equality and empowerment of women. New technologies can be harnessed for forging regional partnerships for sustainable development, including good governance, development and poverty reduction. ■

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FRANCOPHONE Africa: Forging new bonds The new economic dynamic in West Africa provides a functional framework for a new and purposeful engagement between India and Africa’s Francophone countries, writes Vidhan Pathak

T

he continent of Africa has a special place in the national political consciousness of India. India extended moral and material support to the African liberation movements in their struggle for freedom and to realise their human and political rights. India’s abhorrence for all forms of discrimination, support to African liberation movements and independent countries of that continent, lies rooted in the strong historical and emotional links that binds India to Africa. The historic role of Mahatma Gandhi in South Africa, India’s consistent support to the liberation struggle and antiapartheid campaign laid the firm foundations of the India’s Africa policy and relations with the continent. Today, the increasing cooperation between India and the Francophone African countries in all fields is due to India’s historical affinities and innate sympathies with the aspirations of the people of the Francophone Africa and a desire to assist this development in all ways. There are twenty five French speaking countries in Africa and the term “Francophone Africa” is generally used to denote those countries where a substantial number of its population

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speak French. It currently includes not only the former French colonies but also the former colonies of Belgium, Zaire, Rwanda, Burundi and the former British colonies like Mauritius and Seychelles. The French culture is deeply rooted and distinctive in these countries. India has welcomed the opportunities emerging from the wide-ranging political and economic changes taking place throughout Francophone Africa, which when viewed in conjunction with India’s own changing profile, provides a functional framework for a new and purposeful engagement between India and the Francophone African countries. India attaches priority to sustaining and rejuvenating its close and privileged relations with these countries. Building on almost five decades of close political support and technical assistance, India is now moving towards closer economic and trade relations with the countries of Francophone Africa in the true spirit of South-South Cooperation. The goodwill and credibility of India among these countries is rooted in the historical role India played in the freedom struggle in the continent of Africa besides its growing economic muscle in the 1990s. Historically, India has identified with Francophone African countries in their anti-colonial struggles. Independent India’s

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A F R I C A pursuit of the goal of freedom and self-government for all countries in Africa as well as Asia brought the French dominated territories in Africa within the general ambit of India’s Africa policy. India has consistently championed the cause of the political advancement of the African colonies of France in the UN Trusteeship Council and the UN committee on nonself governing territories. However, India’s anti-colonial pronouncements on the French imperialism were generally muted. This was partly because of the peculiar juridical status and constitutional evolution of the African colonies of France and partly because India was engaged in delegate negotiations with France for the transfer of sovereignty in respect of former French settlements in India. However, the confidence of the Francophone African countries in India stems from the fact that India had always been in the forefront of all actions and movements that aimed at the decolonisation of the African countries. India had initiated and chaired UN committees on decolonisation. The declaration of independence by the then French territories in AugustSeptember 1960, led by Ivory Coast, was greeted by India with caution, probably as their juridical status was still uncertain. By August 1961, when the Francophone African states were celebrating the first anniversary of their independence, India was represented in almost every capital by a special envoy, though in most cases it was the head of the Indian mission in a neighbouring Anglophone country. However, with

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the independence of these countries, the rallying point between the two regions i.e. support to liberation struggles, gave way to a new form of engagement driven by economic opportunities in the region. India’s Relations with Francophone Africa: Past Experiences Since independence, India has had cordial relations with Francophone countries. India acknowledged their developmental concerns and extended support and assistance to these countries. With its ideological commitment to NAM and Afro-Asian resurgence, India started the process of economic engagement with this region. Despite limited resources, India has extended a helping hand as a friend and an ally, sharing its developmental experiences and technical expertise with these countries. Many representatives of these countries were provided training every year under the Indian Technical and Economic Cooperation Programme (ITEC). India has also contributed to international peace and security through the participation in the UN peacekeeping operations in some of these countries. Indian peacekeepers were present in Rwanda, Congo and some other African countries in the last decade. Their presence in the region indicates India’s commitment to support any process aimed at bringing peace and development to the Francophone African region.

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India’s Francophone Africa Policy: Leniency to Partnership The 1990s saw India’s foreign policy acquiring an economic orientation. As a result, India foreign policy has been increasingly driven towards finding export markets, attracting foreign capital and know-how. Francophone African countries remained the unexplored part of India’s economic strategy. However, the big leap in Indian thinking occurred in the 1990s when it stopped seeing these countries in terms of the old third world agenda of decolonisation and non-alignment. Issues such as disarmament and non-alignment that had brought the two regions together took a backseat in this era of globalisation. The recent Indian efforts are about plugging a huge gap in India’s strategy of intensifying political and economic contact with these countries. In the 1990s, with a fast globalising world and the change in the profiles of India and Francophone African countries, Indian foreign policy took new initiatives to rope in them in its new drive for economic and strategic cooperation to achieve the developmental goals. India has adopted several means of economic interaction with these countries, which include bilateral agreements, granting of credits and loans. High-level visits from India, study-cum-business tours organised by institutions like the ASSOCHAM, CII, FICCI and government representatives have opened up new vistas of cooperation in trade and industrial ventures. India has taken a large number of initiatives by way of visits by senior experts, policy makers and diplomats, to some of the important Francophone African countries. Under ITEC and SCAAP, the Indian government has sent technical assistance worth $2 billion to Africa. The launching of IOR-ARC, India-Africa Interest Group, TEAM-9, Focus Africa, shows that the Indian foreign policy in context of Africa is on the move. India launched an integrated ‘Focus Africa’ programme in the year 2002-2003 to enhance its trade with the Sub-Saharan African region. The Focus Africa Programme focused on Sub-Saharan African region with added emphasis on seven major trading partners of the region viz. Nigeria, South Africa, Mauritius, Kenya, Ethiopia, Tanzania and Ghana. In fact, the scope of this programme was further extended with effect from April 1, 2003 to all the other countries of the Sub-Saharan African region, where India has diplomatic missions. Under this programme, the government of India extends assistance to exporters and export promotion councils to visit these countries, organise trade fairs and invite African trade delegations to visit India. Francophone West Africa In continuation of its broader Africa policy, India has also made efforts to strengthen political understanding and expand economic cooperation with the countries of Francophone West Africa. India’s recent opening to the countries of Francophone West Africa has consolidated the progress in bilateral relations with countries like Senegal, Cote d’Ivoire, Burkina Faso, Mali and Togo. A wide-ranging political dialogue with several key countries in the region also displays a

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considerable degree of understanding of India’s security interests. The region has become an important source of hydrocarbons for the world in the recent years. India’s ONGC Videsh has already made investment in Ivory Coast. Energy diplomacy, therefore, is an important component of Indian foreign policy towards this region. Considering the potential that this region offers and insignificant Indian presence in that market, India launched ‘TEAM-9 initiative’ in March 2004. The ‘TEAM-9 initiative’ is expected to diversify sources of India’s energy security. The endeavour was to put these countries and India together in an economic cooperation framework. Thus, India’s TEAM-9 initiative point is a renewed focus on the region, which offers a huge strategic potential. The government of India provided concessional credit facilities (LoC) of $500 million for financial assistance for various projects and schemes identified for implementation under this regional cooperation mechanism. The government of India also offered access to training resources in India and facilitated deputation of Indian scientists, technologists and other experts. In terms of multilateral diplomacy, these countries have always been important. They form a very important voting bloc in global forums. India is seeking their support in its candidature for the permanent membership of UN Security Council, in WTO and other international organisations. Given their membership of several multilateral fora such as G-15, G-77, NAM and their common endeavour to set up a just and equitable world order, the renewed contact at the highest political level underlines the need for strategic consultations between them. In fact, Indian foreign policy makers are looking forward to identify common areas of understanding and mutual benefits in the fields of economy, politics and strategy with these countries. With the focus on Francophone West African region, the Ministry of External Affairs, government of India, appointed a Joint Secretary for West African region in the 1990s. These countries are now receiving greater attention in India’s foreign policy calculus with the establishment of a high-level inter-ministerial coordination board for the sub-region. Francophone Western Indian Ocean Region: The wave of globalisation in the 1990s also compelled India to revise its policy for the Indian Ocean region. Since the early 1990s, India has demonstrated its keenness to engage the littoral states, regional powers as well as the great powers in its security strategy for the region. It has sought to enhance economic cooperation with Francophone Western Indian Ocean Islands. This readiness to shed the ambiguities of the nonalignment era and a willingness to enter into strategic dialogues with those so interested with India has set the stage for cooperation with France in the Indian Ocean region. Now engagement is the key word of India’s Indian Ocean policy. This engagement has been beneficial in terms of deepening India’s economic and security links with the Francophone Western Indian Ocean region. It has helped to remove widespread doubts and apprehensions about India’s political motivations in the region. Thus the Indian policy has created new openings for cooperation with Francophone Western Indian Ocean Islands in the Indian Ocean region.

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Q U A R T E R L Y

The Francophone Western Indian Ocean Island nations, leaders have prepared a vision for Africa in the 21st century. Madagascar, Mauritius, Comoros and Seychelles, have seen Reform oriented African leaders have crafted the ‘New a growth in democratic institutions and economic develop- Partnership for Africa’s Development’ (NEPAD). India is ment, which changed their relationships to outside powers. seen as a reliable partner in helping this vision. The prospects These island states have tended to follow a non-aligned poli- offered by this partnership and the vast potential for sustaincy in their foreign relations and reflecting their lack of defence able progress inherent in the African initiative shows that there capabilities have sought to promote the Indian Ocean Zone is room for countries like India to share and be part of this new of Peace, in which they include littoral states. Further, all dynamism. India has emerged today as a key global player. Francophone Western Indian Ocean Islands are opening up There are today a large number of Indians in information to the world. Although Francophone Western Indian Ocean technology and other fields who are making investments in the Islands are different due to French culture, they are also tied European Union. There are technologies, which India can with the third world developing countries like India and has transfer to other countries given its strength in knowledge much in common. There is also a clear signal from industry. Apart from IT and knowledge industry which India Francophone Western Indian Ocean Island states to develop has acquired over the last decade or so, India’s other strengths stronger ties with India. India, after the liberalisation of its include the emergence of the Indian Diaspora and the politieconomy in the 1990s, has taken concrete steps to integrate cal influence they enjoy in various countries. Although this with the littoral economies through a variety of regional and factor is absent in its relations with Francophone West African sub-regional mechanisms. There has been an upward shift in states but certainly it is important factor in its relations with India’s trade with the Indian Ocean region countries. India has Francophone Western Indian Ocean states like Mauritius, also forged new trade and investment pacts with Indian Ocean Madagascar and Seychelles. rim countries. Thus, there is The Diaspora Factor: greater opportunity for strength- India after economic liberalisation On the cultural front, the has made sustained efforts to ening relations between India interaction between India and Francophone Western integrate with the littoral economies and Francophone region is Indian Ocean Island states. comparatively at a low level through a variety of regional and probably due to an absence Defence and Maritime sub-regional mechanisms. Cooperation: India has begun of sizeable Indian diaspora in to put in place formal mechathese countries, except in Its earlier lukewarm attitude to nisms for defence and security Mauritius, Madagascar and regional cooperation has shifted Seychelles, where they are in cooperation with many of these Island states. Defence agreement towards a positive direction buoyed good numbers. However, or MoUs with countries like by the post Cold War regional order considering the vital role of Seychelles have already been cultural capital (cultural and the search for new markets. cooperation) in strengthenconcluded and some more are in the pipeline. India is also coning relations between the cerned about transnational threats like terrorism, piracy, nacro- two sides, it is need of the hour to encourage such cooperaterrorism, gun running. It has already signed MoUs with tion and the Indian Community in Francophone Africa, some states to combat terrorism in the region. India has although small in number, can provide important cultural and demonstrated its keenness to engage these states as well as familial links between India and Francophone African counFrance in its security strategy since 1990s. Recently formulat- tries. Further, Indian cinema and dances are popular in some ed maritime doctrine of India talks about increasing coopera- of these countries like Senegal and Burkina Faso. The entertion with other navies to combat emerging common concerns tainment industry could help in furthering the cultural consuch as terrorism, transportation of weapons of mass destruc- tacts between the two regions and create a market for its tion, sea piracy and drug trafficking. China’s strategy of bases exports in the region. and diplomatic ties stretching in the Indian Ocean region is a The Indian Diaspora is indeed a dominant factor in India’s cause of concern for India. In response to a potential Chinese relations with Francophone Western Indian Ocean Island encirclement, India is strengthening her naval capabilities and states. The presence of strong Indian community in this region trying to improve military/security relationship with provides familial and trading links between India and this Francophone Western Indian Ocean Islands. Due to its secu- region. Religion and cultural ties play a considerable part in the rity concerns, India could think of having a naval base in either politics of most if not of all these islands. The presence of a Madagascar or Mauritius. large Indian community in Mauritius (around 68 percent of Francophone African countries have consciously embarked the total population) contributes significantly to the overall upon economic reforms and political liberalisation. These economic relations between India and Mauritius. Mauritius developments have important implication for their relations has tended since independence to keep its foreign policy with India. Change in the perception began in the early 1990s. broadly in harmony with India. The change in the Indian govIndia is conscious that a new Africa is coming into being free, ernment’s diaspora policy in the 1990s, from “dissociation” in economically vibrant and politically representative. African earlier decades to “active association” in the present era, is

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expected to further enhance economic and cultural coopera- have also been an important focus of India’s foreign policy in tion between India and these countries, as significant popula- international forums. tion of the Indian diaspora is present in Seychelles (around 6 India’s diplomatic vision extends to embrace the interests percent of the local population), Madagascar (around 25,000 of Africa as a whole, particularly in the priority area of ecopersons of Indian origin) and French territory of Reunion nomic progress and development. Such an economic con(around 220,000 persons of Indian origin which is approxi- gruence is facilitated by a broad agreement between India and mately 30 percent of the island’s population). The economi- the countries of Africa on their vision of a new world order, cally influential Indian diaspora in this region is attempting to characterised by peace, justice and equity, and fully responsive rediscover their roots, ancestral traditions and cultural heritage, to the needs and interests of the developing world. Thus, the which their forefathers brought from India. Thus, India can government of India continues its policy of consolidating the engage its diaspora in strengthening relations with these coun- gains of almost five decades of close ties of friendship with the tries. The PIOs are important and relevant overseas segment countries in the Africa. and can also be roped in India’s new drive for strengthen bilatFrancophone African countries are currently engaged in eral relations with all Francophone African countries. the simultaneous processes of economic reform and political Cooperation with Regional Groupings: In order to democratisation. These processes, being in line with India’s establish a multi-polar world, smaller countries in the world own national priorities, have strengthened its capacity to idenare getting together and bonding themselves not merely into tify itself with the aspirations of the people of Francophone economic groups but also acquiring a political personality. Africa and to engage with them in a constructive programme India is trying to forge relations with the African groups and of mutually beneficial cooperation. As an emerging power, has evolved a policy to deal with these regional groups. In this India is ready to play a growing role in Francophone Africa. effort, economic diplomacy Francophone Africa provides The Indian Diaspora is indeed a India with its growing need for will be India’s principal tool. India is trying to evolve free dominant factor in India’s relations markets and new sources of trade arrangements with materials. For a variety of with Francophone Western Indian raw Africa. India is merely not reasons, these countries are looking at investments from Ocean Island states. The presence important for Indian foreign other regions and countries, of a strong Indian community in policy consideration. Firstly, at developed or developing. It is level of diplomacy, the culthis region provides familial and the also in a position to contribute tivation of friendly relations to them. There is considerable trading links... Religion and cultural gain support in various interpotential for economic and national forums, which are ties play a considerable part commercial cooperation, for vital to India’s national interest. in the politics of most if promoting small-scale indusSecondly, Francophone Africa not of all these islands. tries in Africa, with technologeconomically provides vast ical support from India. India scope for mutually beneficial has initiated several economic arrangements with the coun- trade and commercial linkages in the spirit of South-South tries of Africa. These include India’s membership of the Cooperation. The imperatives of India’s liberalised and globAfrican Development Bank, credit arrangements, several bilat- alised economy makes it necessary that Third World countries eral agreements concluded in the fields of trade and assistance and their markets are more seriously explored. Thirdly, India under the ITEC programme. India is also involved in forging has a stake in NAM, G-77, G-15 and also Africa. India has crurelations of partnership and cooperation with regional African cial stakes in WTO and restructuring the UN. Thus, the qualorganisations like SADC, COMESA, ECOWAS, UNCCA ity and depth of Indo-Francophone Africa bilateral relations and African Development Bank. assume even greater significance in the light of new global realIndia is committed to multi-pluralism. It is not in favour of ities. uni-polarity and therefore the kind of world order, which High-level inter-ministerial coordination board for India envisages and is working for, is not one merely of tech- the West Africa sub-region: The countries of Francophone nical equality in the United Nations but greater balance among Africa are now receiving greater attention in India’s foreign nations of the world. India is working for a better world order policy consideration with the establishment of a high-level in the economic sphere. India is trying to coordinate activities inter-ministerial coordination board for the sub-region (West with other developing countries in order to be able to deal with Africa). the enormity of the inequality, which exists in the world today, Equity in West African Development Bank (BOAD): and create an environment that is more equitable. India has Exim Bank has also taken up equity in West African played an active role in the deliberations of the United Nations Development Bank (BOAD), headquartered in Lome (capiin the creation of a more equitable international economic tal of Togo), which operates in eight French speaking African order. It has been an active member of the G-77 and later the countries. Exim Bank of India is the first non-African and G-15. Other issues, such as environmentally sustainable devel- non-European bank to be admitted as a shareholder of BOAD. opment and the promotion and protection of human rights Accordingly, EXIM Bank gave $10 million credit and $1 mil-

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lion towards equity of the West African Development Bank (WADB). Increasing level of bilateral interactions, visits and agreements between both the regions in recent years: There is comprehensive shift and changes in the foreign policy of India and these countries in the 1990s. This is well reflected from the increasing level of bilateral interactions, visits and agreements between both the regions in recent years. Private Initiatives: In the 1990s, organisations like the Confederation of Indian Industries (CII), the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry (Assocham), Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) and Federation of Indian Exporters Organisation (FIEO), identified the region as a thrust area and launched programmes to promote economic and business cooperation. This included an exchange of information, conducting oneto-one business meetings and organising activities like ‘Made in India’ shows across the continent. They also entered into joint business agreements with countries like Mauritius, Kenya, Zambia and Nigeria. Initiatives by FICCI include Joint Business Council agreements with countries like Mauritius and Algeria and interaction with heads of state and other dignitaries (IBSA Business Council). India-Africa Project Partnership Conclaves: It has achieved credibility as a business-to-business platform between India and the countries of Africa. This platform has created benchmarks for the engagement of industry and government from India and the African region. The last conclave held in March 2008 saw the participation of over 500 delegates representing 33 African countries, four regional organisations and six banking and financial organisations. Over the last three years, projects in various sectors have been discussed and implemented as a result of the CII conclaves. Projects worth $910 billion were discussed. A large number of these projects have utilised the Lines of Credit announced for the African region. The government of India’s Lines of Credit facilitated by EXIM Bank of India has provided lending for Indian industry looking to invest and create a sustainable partnership with the African countries. Francophone Africa Perspective: Partnerships for

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Economic Development: The policy shift is also echoed across Francophone African countries as most of the economies are going through reforms and liberalisation. They are looking for partnerships for their economic development and have sought India’s help. The new image of India in the 1990s, of a leader in information technology (IT) industry, biotechnology and telecommunications, has attracted the countries to India. Francophone African states need appropriate technology, equipment and machinery at low cost and other assistance for their economic development and for this India could be viable partner. India-Francophone Africa Trade Relations: Francophone Africa region is already emerging as one of India’s important trade partners. Trends in trade show that there is a gradual increase in the level of trade between both the regions in the period of 1994-95 to 2003-2004. Bilateral trade has jumped more than five times from about Rs. 11.22 billion in 1994-95 to Rs. 58.98 billion in 2003-04. It has increased by more than 400 percent over the last ten years (1994-95 to 2003-04). Export jumped around six times with an increase of 497 percent from about Rs. 6.53 billion in 199495 to Rs. 39.07 billion in 2003-04. Import increased by 325 percent and four times from the figure of Rs. 4.68 billion in 199495 to Rs. 19.91 billion in 2003-04. Percentage Share of India-Francophone Africa Trade in Indo-African Trade: Francophone Africa share in India’s total trade with Africa was 19.93 percent in 1994-95 and it slightly increased to 20.52 percent in 2003-04. In the ten years (1994-95 to 2003-2004), it remained between 17 percent to 20 percent except in the year 2000-01 when it touch the 37.28 percent mark due to sudden increase in imports from countries like Ivory Coast, Gabon, Seychelles and Congo. It is the Indian exports to Francophone Africa, which has large share in India’s total exports to Africa in comparison to imports. The share of the Indian exports to Francophone Africa in India’s total exports to Africa remained around 2526 percent in the period of 1994-95 to 2003-2004. The share of the Indian imports from Francophone Africa in India’s total imports from Africa has varied from 11 to 16 percent from year to year. Again the exception is year 2000-01 when it touched the 49.77 percent mark. Key Countries in Trade Relations: Mauritius, Ivory Coast, Senegal, Algeria, Benin, Mali, Djibouti, Congo P Republic and Morocco have emerged as important trading partners of India in this region. Together, they accounted for more than 79 percent of India’s total trade with Francophone Africa in 2003-2004. Mauritius, Ivory Coast, Senegal, Algeria and Mali are five leading trade partners of India in this region and accounted for more than 60 percent of India’s total trade with Francophone Africa in 2003-2004. In fact, three states namely Mauritius, Ivory Coast and Senegal accounted for more than 45 percent of India’s total trade with Francophone

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Main Items of Trade

Africa in 2003-2004. Senegal, Ivory Coast, Benin, Mali and Morocco are five leading suppliers to India and accounted for more than 81 percent of India’s total value of imports originating in Francophone Africa during 2003-2004. It is worthwhile to note that four or five economies, which are comparatively more developed than other economies of the Francophone Africa region, have an edge in trade relations with India. Mauritius, the leading client of India from this region, has an edge due to the large number of PIOs in that country.

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Exports: Manufactured goods consisting of leather, leather manufactured goods, chemicals and related products, engineering goods, articles of iron or steel, textiles and industrial machinery and other manufactured goods top India’s export list to Francophone Africa. Although it is fluctuating from year to year but it has a giant share in the export list of India to these countries. Agricultural and allied products are next to the manufactured goods in the list of Indian exports to these countries. Among the agricultural products, cereals, cotton, rice and rubber are the largest export earning commodities. Pharmaceutical products, vehicles and transport equipment are other principal items exported to Francophone Africa. Imports: Traditional exports such as cocoa, coffee and palm oil are still favourites in import list of India from Francophone Africa. Among other agricultural products, fruits and nuts (groundnuts/peanuts) also have a vital share. There is also growth in non-traditional primary exports such as pineapples and rubber. Cotton, oil seeds, grains and other plants, are among other principal items imported. Manufactured goods such as chemicals, organic and inorganic, wood and articles with metals, salt, sulphur, stones, ores and minerals are among other favourites from the Francophone Africa region. Thus, it is evident from the commodity pattern of IndoFrancophone African trade relations that value added products are finding place a in export and import list of these countries. India’s potential items of export to Francophone African states: There is vast scope for expansion of India’s export to this region. There is a tremendous scope for the export of engineering goods and industrial machinery such as food processing machinery, bakery and dairy machinery, rubber processing machinery, wood working machinery and

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Q U A R T E R L Y

pharmaceutical manufacturing machinery, agricultural other Francophone African countries. Indo-Francophone machinery and equipment, tractors and machines and equip- African joint ventures will necessarily lead to larger trade ment for processing of fruits and vegetables, textile and jute between India and Francophone West African countries. mill machinery and sewing machines and cloth stitching machines. Automobile parts and accessories, bicycle parts and Areas of Cooperation: hand tool (ceiling fan and pump sets) and electric manufactures, iron and steel and organic/inorganic agricultural chemPeacekeeping: India has contributed to the maintenance ical products and aluminium products can also be exported to of international peace and security through the participation this region by India. Garments, fabrics, rice and spices are in UN peacekeeping operations in Africa. Indian peacekeepamong other Indian items with a good market in Francophone ers were present in Angola, Mozambique, Somalia, Rwanda, African states. Pharmaceuticals (bulk drugs), computer soft- Ethiopia, Sierra-Leone and Congo, to name a few, in the last ware, plastic goods, leather manufactures, handicrafts, elec- decade. Over the years, India has provided a cumulative total tronic goods, builders hardware, medical and surgical instru- of 50,000 troops to 29 UN peacekeeping operations. The ments, bathroom fittings, cosmetics and toiletries, metal man- Indian contingent also provided humanitarian assistance. ufactures, audio and video cassettes and processed food and ECOWAS is seeking international support to enable it to train marine products also have a good market in Francophone and equip 15 battalions of troops pledged by member states as African states. standby units for its peacekeeping force, ECOMOG (ECOWFrancophone African states items of export to India: AS Monitoring Group). The training of the composite units Oil and Gas: In India, the demand for hydrocarbons is will facilitate their effectiveness in peacekeeping, humanitargrowing at the rate of 6.5 percent to 7 percent per annum. It ian assistance and other missions for which they could be is the eighth largest consumer of oil and is expected to be the deployed. fifth largest consumer in the next twenty years. Securing a staEconomic and Technological Cooperation: ble oil supply will increasCommitted to building indigeIndia has contributed to the ingly become a security prinous capacities and promoting ority for India. Thus, India is maintenance of international peace self-reliance in those countries, keen to diversify her India has promoted several pilot petroleum supply options. and security through participation projects in these countries, This situation brings into in UN peacekeeping operations in financed through grant assisfocus the hydrocarbon Africa. Indian peacekeepers were tance. A project for the estabresource of the lishment of an Entrepreneur and present in Angola, Mozambique, Technology Development Francophone West African countries as they provide an Somalia, Rwanda, Ethiopia, Sierra- Centre was undertaken in important option for the Senegal. The government of Leone and Congo, in the last energy supply diversificaIndia also reiterated its commitdecade. India has provided a tion. This region has potenment to participate in the Sahel tial to become a sustainable cumulative total of 50,000 troops to Railway Project in Burkina Faso. alternative to India’s energy 29 UN peacekeeping operations. Technical cooperation prosecurity needs. By providing grammes were also initiated in the technical infrastructural Togo and Mali. India assisted help and training facilities to these oil-producing countries for Togo in rural development by gifting water pumps, sewing the oil exploration, India can prove its utility and can have machines, corn grinding mills, and TATA mobile ambulances mutual dealing for oil import. Agriculture produce like cocoa, worth Rs. 30.26 million. In Mali, a drilling rig gifted by India cocoa preparations, edible fruits, nuts (cashew nuts) and rub- was installed and commissioned. India gifted seven heavyber, cotton raw and waste, wood and wood products, fertilis- duty photocopiers to Burkina Faso in 1998. On November 7 ers (crude), leather and fruit juices etc have also good market to 10, 1998, the foundation was laid for the project of in India. India can also import items like gold, precious met- Industries Chimique Du Senegal in which IFFCO is an equials, inorganic and organic chemicals, iron & steel etc from ty partner. these countries. Agricultural Cooperation: India’s relations with the Investments and Joint Ventures: Mauritius is an countries of Francophone Africa were further consolidated important destination for Indian investment in the with the progress in bilateral agricultural and rural developFrancophone African region. Apart from Mauritius (which ment projects being undertaken in Burkina Faso, Mali and has as many as 28 Indian Joint Ventures and 90 wholly- Senegal. A team of agriculture experts visited Senegal, Cote owned subsidiary), there are few Indian joint ventures in the d’Ivoire and Togo in August and September 1996 with a view region. There are three joint ventures in Senegal, one in to formulating specific programmer of agricultural cooperaGuinea and Seychelles and one wholly owned subsidiary each tion with these countries. A two-member team from in Ivory Coast and Madagascar up to year 2000. There is thus IVRI/ICAR visited Mali from September 28 to October 7, an urgent need to set up more joint ventures in 1996, to conduct feasibility study for setting up a Poultry

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Vaccine Laboratory in Mali and a three-member team from Gujarat Tractors Corporation Limited visited Senegal, Ivory Coast and Togo during 1996 to explore possibilities for mutual cooperation in the field of agriculture. Indo-Burkina Farmers Project: An Agricultural Development Project was undertaken in Burkina Faso. Farmers from Punjab were deployed in Burkina Faso for agricultural demonstration project. India sent six farmers to Burkina Faso in October under the Indo-Burkina Farmers Project to assist and train their Burknabe counterparts in mechanised farming to produce quality seeds. This project has successfully taken off. In recent years, the Ministry of External Affairs, India, has received requests from African countries through ITEC programme to transfer knowledge and skills gained under India’s green revolution. A similar Agricultural Development Project was also undertaken in Senegal. Senegal has received 100 Indian tractors in 1998 as part of the Agriculture Development Project being set up with India’s assistance. This project is aimed at providing expertise and equipment to Senegal to develop rice farming and to cultivate better variety of cotton. Human Resource Development: In continuation of an established tradition, India extended assistance in the form of machinery, manpower and human resource development to the Francophone African countries in various crucial sectors. An Entrepreneurial Training and Development Centre (ETDC), built with Indian technical and financial assistance at an estimated cost of $4.49 million by HMT (I) to provide technical training in various vocational fields, was handed over to the government of Senegal on June 16, 2000. Many trainees from the Francophone African region are coming to India for training in many fields, including computer education, diplomacy and telecommunications. India also continues to

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strengthen cooperation in the field of human resource development through the provision of training slots, deputation of experts and supply of equipment under the ITEC programme and the Special Commonwealth African Assistance Plan (SCAAP). In this sphere, India is in a position to assist and a large number of Indian scientists and technical experts are already working in these countries. Sectors in Francophone Africa Region for Indian Investment: India, with its experience of over fifty years of industrial growth, attained expertise in certain important sectors and has comparative advantage in many areas. These sectors are agriculture, infrastructure, communication, irrigation, housing, health and small and medium scale industries. Thus, in the area of production cooperation, a number of areas have been identified. Energy Cooperation: This region has become an important source of hydrocarbons for the world and India in the recent years. A lot of the new proven reserves of oil and gas have been found in the Gulf of Guinea in the Western part of the continent. Oil and gas producing countries of this region have potential to cooperate with India in the energy sector based on a larger shared perspective. They can provide additional source for India’s long-term energy security whereas Indian technological expertise and functional experiences in oil and gas sector are compatible to the production pattern of this region. This region provides an opportunity for India to evolve a broad-based sustainable cooperation with the region, based on emerging dynamics of the global energy security and multiplicity of shared interests. India does not want to be left behind. In fact India’s ONGC Videsh (OVL) has announced new acquisition in the Ivory Coast. Agricultural Cooperation: Agriculture is not confined just to the production of agricultural products but includes the

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A F R I C A supply of fertilisers, irrigation, storage and communication. The investment made in agriculture provides the maximum possible return. Francophone African countries have vast fertile land, untapped, undeveloped and unharvested, which could be utilised for food production to enable them to attain self-sufficiency in food. India is in a position to offer appropriate technology and training to agriculturists in these countries. India has got the necessary expertise on seed farm, soil testing and irrigation. India’s experience in setting up agriculture-related institutes and universities could also be very useful for establishing such institutions in some bigger countries and regional institutes in the smaller ones. Rural and Small-Scale Industries: The rural and smallscale industries sector is another area of Indian specialisation. India could assist these countries in establishing small-scale industries (SSI) in the field of agro-processing like sugar cane, forestry products, consumer durables and the light electrical and electronics industry. India can also set up industries in other sectors such as oil refining, food processing and preservation, hotel, mineral processing, small cement plants, granite and marbles. All these activities help in creating gainful employment and can increase income for these countries and particularly for those who live in the rural areas. Information Technology: India has an internationally recognised expertise in the Information Technology (IT) sector. The IT is one major specific sector in which there is a huge scope for expansion in terms of co-operation between the Indian and the Francophone African companies. India has offered technical training to these countries under the ITEC. This involved technical training, consultancy services and project assistance. Transport and Communication: Most of the Francophone African Countries are interested in improving

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their basic infrastructure in the transport sector, shipping and port facilities and they would welcome any assistance rendered in these areas. India with her experience of not only developing her own infrastructure but also of completing a number of turnkey jobs in these areas in the Middle-East can do a lot in these countries. Housing: Housing has emerged as a promising area of cooperation between the two regions. India has proven expertise in low-cost housing. Others: Indians could provide assistance in the field of techno-economic surveys, planning, preparation of feasibility and detailed project reports, entrepreneurship development and managerial assistance. Conclusion In the 1990s, with the growing pace of economical reforms and globalisation and the change in the ranks and profile of India as well as Francophone African countries, Indian foreign policy has taken new initiatives to rope in the Francophone African countries in its new drive for economic and strategic cooperation to achieve developmental goals. This has translated into a slew of initiatives aimed at enchancing India’s engagement with the region that included TEAM-9, Focus Africa, Agricultural Development Projects, Line of Credit facilities and investments in energy sector, India-Africa Project Partnership Conclaves. The India-Africa Forum summit would help in crystallising the partnership and will open new pathways of cooperation. The summit will help the pace and spirit of India-Africa ties to gather momentum. A sense of common cause and a shared future is an unbreakable link between India and Francophone African countries which will extend to facing the new and emerging challenges confronting them in the new millennium. ■

Notes and References 1. Homi J. H. Taliyarkhan, “India and African Liberation Movements and Economic Growth”, in R.R. Ramchandani, ed., India and Africa (New Delhi, Radiant Publishers, 1980), p. 71. 2. T.G. Ramamurthi, “India’s Relations with Francophone African States”, Africa Quarterly (New Delhi), vol. 34, no. 1(1994), p. 40. 3. ibid, p. 39. 4. Vidhan Pathak, “India’s Francophone Africa Policy: Leniency to Partnership”, The Indian Journal of Political Science, vol. LXVIII, no. 2 (Meerut, IPSA, April-June, 2007), pp. 293-310. 5. Hindustan Times (New Delhi), 2 March 2004. 6. Vidhan Pathak, “Francophone Africa and India: Emerging Relations in West African Region”, Africa Quarterly, vol.46, no.2, (New Delhi, ICCR, May-July 2006), pp. 18-29. 7. Government of India, Ministry of External Affairs, Annual Report, 1998-99 (New Delhi, 1999), p. 52 8. Government of India, Ministry of External Affairs, Annual Report, 1999-2000 (New Delhi, 2000), p. 47. 9. Government of India, Ministry of External Affairs, Annual Report, 1995-96 (New Delhi, 1996), p. 57.

10. For detail see, Government of India, Ministry of External Affairs, Annual Report, 1996-97 (New Delhi, 1997), p. 53. 11. Vidhan Pathak, “France and Francophone Western Indian Ocean Region: Implications for Indian Interests”, Journal of Indian Ocean Studies, vol.14, no.2, (New Delhi, SIOS, August 2006), pp. 186-203. 12. Government of India, n. 33, p. 51. 13. M.K. Roy, France Status as an Indian Ocean State”, USI Journal (New Delhi), Vol - C XXI, (504), April -June 1991, p. 166. 14. Foreign Policy statement by Shri Kanwal Sibal, Foreign Secretary, Government of India on 23 January 2003 at Geneva Forum, (Online web) URL: http://meaindia.nic.in 15. High Commission of India, n. 23. 16. Government of India, Ministry of External Affairs, Annual Report, 1984-85 (New Delhi, 1985), p. 22. 17. Government of India, Ministry of External Affairs, Annual Report, 1994-95 (New Delhi, 1995), p. 49. 18. Vidhan Pathak, “India’s Energy Diplomacy in Francophone Africa: Competitive-Cooperation with China”, India Quarterly, Vol. LXIII, No. 2, (New Delhi, ICWA, AprilJune 2007), pp. 26-55.

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Minister for External Affairs, Pranab Mukherjee (centre), with Ghana Vice-President Alhaji Aliu Mahama (left) and Sunil Mittal, chairman and managing director of the Bharti Group, at the CII conclave in New Delhi.

India-Africa Project Partnership Conclave

India-Africa economic ties on an UPSWING The fourth India-Africa economic conclave ended on an upbeat note as businessmen of both sides struck deals worth $10 billion. The conclave set new benchmarks for partnership between India and Africa.

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hen the curtains came down on the fourth IndiaAfrica business conclave in mid-March in New Delhi, there was a palpable sense of excitement and a powerful buzz that was hard to miss. And it was not just hype. Smart talk and sharp presentations were matched by deals worth $10 billion on the table as Indian and African businessmen and officials enthusiastically embraced new opportunities presented by their burgeoning economies. The sheer scale of the event — over 600 business delegates from 33 African States, led by 35 ministers, attended the three-day India-Africa Project Partnership (March 19-21) — underscored a new economic synergy between India, a rising economic giant and the emerging economies of Africa, some of whom are bettering the global average rate of growth. The fourth conclave, held ahead of India’s first summit with 14 African countries in April, discussed over 150 projects worth $10 billion focusing on four core areas: technology, agriculture, human resources and energy. There was also mutual appraisal and a resolve, eloquently repeated by speaker after speaker, to set new benchmarks for business partnership between India and Africa. Africa’s economic resurgence, with many of its oil-rich economies notch-

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Syamal Gupta, chairman of CII’s Africa Committee and Tata International Limited, which has diverse business interests in at least 18 African countries ranging from vehicles and hotels to telecom and infrastructure, speaks to Africa Quarterly about the new economic synergy between India and Africa and the need for a more energetic marketing of new business opportunities emerging in the African continent.

Q

The Confederation of Indian Industries (CII) has been a key player in organising India-Africa Project partnership Conclave for the last three years. What is the idea of holding such conclaves? How do such conclaves help to promote trade and investment between India and Africa.

A

The CII has always focused on Africa and provided a platform to bring Indian and African businessmen together. This is the fourth economic conclave which has attracted the largest ever continent of ministers and businessmen from 33 African countries. Projects worth billions of dollars have been discussed at these conclaves. Building this economic relationship is vitally important for both sides. The Government of India has been pursuing Focus Africa programme for many years. With the process of economic liberalisation in India and Africa, both sides are looking at strengthening this partnership. The idea is to ensure that we build a long-term sustainable partnership with Africa.

Q

Given long-standing historical and cultural ties, the renewed economic engagement between India and Africa is special in many respects. What gives these ties its unique character?

A

We are people with shared histories. Africa has been a friendly continent for generations of Indians, who have settled in Africa down the ages. India and Africa have age-old historical and cultural ties. India stood by Africa during the freedom struggle with many prominent Persons of Indian Origin playing prominent role in liberation struggles in many African countries. First, Indians went to Africa as traders, businessmen and labourers. In the next phase, many Indians went as doctors, teachers, engineers and professionals. There are cultural affinities. Africans feel at home in India and Indians feel at home in Africa. There is that natural acceptance and a sense of bonding between the peoples of India and Africa. SouthSouth cooperation and Non-Aligned Movement are other platforms that bring India and Africa together.

Indian economy is doing well. Indians are in top positions in the world. The Tata Group’s Nano car has created a big buzz in Africa. India is increasingly seen in Africa as a source of high-end appropriate, adaptable and affordable technologies. Apart from Western countries, which used to be their main source of capital and technology, African countries are now seeking alternatives like India. India is now one of their most important sources of investment. The Lines of Credit have been a big boost towards encouraging Indian investment in Africa, and has provided the Indian industry a soft landing into the continent. The Government of India has encouraged the business community to build the relationship with Africa for mutual benefit. Capacity building, skills development and training are key areas where partnerships need to be forged between our two regions and the Government of India has promoted this significantly over the years through their ITEC programmes.

Q

Trade and economic investment between India and Africa have been growing steadily over the years - from a few million dollars a decade ago to nearly $25 billion - but some say economic ties remain much below potential. What steps are needed to boost investment between India and Africa?

A

Q

How is India seen in Africa? Why are African countries looking at India afresh?

A

The world is looking at us as an economic and IT power. India’s profile has improved substantially in the world. The

Indian companies may have been a little late in tapping the African market because we have been looking to the West. Now more and more Indian companies are going to Africa to find new opportunities. Africa is a very attractive destination for Indian investment. Big Indian companies like ONGC Videsh, Vedanta, Mittal Group, Reliance, Essar, Ranbaxy, Dr. Reddy’s Labs have already made forays into Africa. The Tatas and Kirloskars have been around in Africa for many decades. One of the ways of boosting trade and investment is to create more awareness about business opportunities in each other’s domains. Information deficit has to be bridged; this has been the biggest aim of the CII conclave over the last four years. African leaders and companies should also market business opportunities in India. The potential is immense. And I have no hesitation in saying that this century belongs to the emerging Africa.

ing up double-digit growth spurred by stability and vigorous reforms, spurred Indian businessmen to take a fresh look at burgeoning business opportunities in the continent. And African businessmen also noticed new things about India’s rising economy and its unique strength as the source of low-cost adaptable and affordable technologies that Africa needs. It turned out to be a surefire formula for a win-win partnership as India underlined its strategy to blend business with its commitment to empower the continent through human resource development and technology transfer. “India believes that expanding trade, and in particular imports, from Africa is part of its strategic engagement with the continent,” India’s Commerce and Industry Minister Kamal Nath said while inaugurating the Fourth India-Africa Project Partnership 2008 March 19. “Agriculture and food

processing are key sectors for cooperation, as both sides are prone to food shortages, lack of diversification in crops and low agricultural productivity,” said Nath. He also asked both sides to focus on project partnership that will strengthen local skill resources, expand infrastructure availability and provide strong foundation for economic cooperation. In his inaugural address, Tanzanian Vice-President Ali Mohamed Shein, the chief guest at the conclave, captured this new mood of buoyancy in India-Africa economic engagement. “The partnership between India and Africa has to be mutually beneficial based on greater economic ties. India and its achievements are a source of inspiration for Africa. Its vibrant economy of about nine percent (growth rate) has given us the lead to be aggressive and competitive in global trade,” Shein added.

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Felix Mutati, Minister for Commerce, Trade and Industry, Zambia Zambian Minister for Commerce, Trade and Industry Felix Mutati speaks to Africa Quarterly about a tax-free zone and other measures taken by his government to attract Indian investment to the country.

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What are your expectations from this economic conclave?

Q A

Do you have any specific projects for Indian investors?

Q A

Will this zone be dedicated to any specific industry?

Q

How much investment are you expecting for this Indiaspecific zone?

A

The Chinese have invested nearly $900 million. We want the Indian zone to be at least their equal. If it is smaller, then it will not have the visibility.

Q A

Have you identified some land for this zone?

Q

Have you spoken to any Indian firm about investing in this venture?

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We are already in talks with the Tata Group, which had shown interest in setting up a plant in the proposed zone, while another Indian industrial group will be visiting Zambia next week to survey the site. Once Indian firms invest in the tax-free zone, they would act as “marketing tools” to attract more Indian investment in other parts of the economy.

Q

What is India’s current investment in Zambia’s mining sector?

A

Right now, India has a share of 50 percent of Zambia’s mining industry, while the Chinese have 15 percent. This is due to Vedanta Resources’ majority stake in Konkola (Zambia’s largest copper mine) at a cost of $1.2 billion. The total Indian investment in Zambia is about $2 billion.

We have had a long-standing partnership with India with investments in several areas. But what has been lacking was visibility. We want to change that.

We are inviting Indian investments for a tax-free zone that we are going to allot. The Chinese and the Malaysians already have their own zones. If the Malaysians can do it, why not India, which is a bigger country.

We would like Indian firms to focus on supply of equipment and processing of raw products for the mining industry. While we have a lot of mining activity, we have to export all the raw materials for processing outside as there is no proper processing plant. All our neighbours — Congo, Angola and Mozambique — also have active mining industries, which could also be catered by this proposed economic zone.

Yes, we have found a land which is 20 by10 km in the central province of Kabwe, about 150 km from Lusaka, the capital city.

The conclave was organised by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) in collaboration with the Export Import (EXIM) Bank of India and the commerce and external affairs ministries of India. The first conclave of this nature and scale was organised in 2005 to develop a model for promoting partnership between the government and the private sector for enhancing India’s participation in the further development of African countries. Trade and investment between India and Africa are on an upswing, recording a five-fold rise in the last five years from $5 billion in 2001-02 to nearly $25 billion in 2006-07, excluding the import of gold bullion. India has already signed 29 trade agreements with African countries and is exploring the possibility of a Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement with the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) and a Preferential Trade agreement with the Southern African Customs Union (SACU). During the inaugural session, the Exim Bank of India and the Exim Bank of Africa signed an agreement for a line of credit of $30 million to be provided by the former to the latter to finance India’s exports to Africa. “Our economies are growing at a vibrant speed and it has also been able to build strong entrepreneurship,” said Semakula Kiwanuka, Uganda’s Minister of State for Finance, Planning and Economic Development (Investments). “I invite India’s private sector, not just the big leaders, but more and more small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to come and explore every corner of Africa,” he said. With the stirring slogan “Chalo Africa”, ministers and officials from African nations laid out the red carpet for Indian firms to explore opportunities in the mining industry — not just for prospecting, but also to look at other ancillary prospects. According to Zambian Commerce Minister Felix C. Mutati, African countries would prefer Indian investment “as we understand each other. You have cost-effective technology which we want. We are able to understand each other better as we are both from the south.” The minister said that Indian firms should concentrate on exploring prospects for supplying equipment to the mining industry, as well as in processing of raw materials. “We know Indians are good at arithmetic. We want you to value-add,” he said. The perennial issue of visas for potential investors and business people was also discussed, with African officials saying they will make it easier to get travel documents. The African ministers also listened carefully to Indian businessmen asking for visas to multiple countries in Africa and promised to give substance to the proposal. According to Mussá Usman, Deputy Director CPIInvestment Promotion Centre, Mozambique, members of the Southern African Development Community (SADC), are at present negotiating a uni-visa system. “It means that if you get a visa to South Africa, then you can travel to other countries too,” he said. “I want to tell you there is more room for Indian firms in Mozambique,” said Usman at a presentation on mining opportunities from diamonds to copper and nickel with the slide saying, “Chalo Africa, Chalo

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Hamed Sow, Minister of Energy, Mines and Water, Mali Mali’s Minister of Energy, Mines and Water Hamed Sow speaks about new opportunities for Indian business in its mining and oil sectors.

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Some Indian firms are keen to invest in your country. How do you see the prospects of working with Indian companies?

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We find that there is greater flexibility when working with Indian firms. They are also from the South, so they know very well, they know the specificity of African countries.

Q

Is there any big project that you will be discussing with the Indian government?

What kind of investment are you looking from Indian firms?

A

At present, we are implementing the electricity interconnection between Mali and Cote d’Ivore.The Indian Government is financing it. With the first component of $75 million given last year, three Indian companies are constructing the line. Now, we want to reinforce it and increase the capacity from 80 megawatt to 200 megawatt. We are talking to the Indian Government for a $200-million credit facility.

Q A

We are the third largest producer of gold, after South Africa and Ghana. We also want to diversify our mining to other resources like uranium, manganese and bauxite. Therefore, we want Indian companies to come and invest now, which is an opportune moment. For example, we have 60 blocks of gold available right now. We also have a lot of potential for oil. Italy’s Eli and Algeria’s

Mozambique” (Let’s go to Africa, Let’s go to Mozambique). With the African economies on a rising curve, Indian companies have been invited to plug the shortfall in power generation and distribution in the continent. Hydropower is the biggest source of electricity in Africa as the continent has some of the largest rivers in the world. While the potential is huge, there are also challenges due to the volatile market and geopolitical situation, he said. African SMEs need a complete overhauling of the system to become more organised and competitive, which it is eager to learn by increased cooperation with India, a visiting Congo minister said. “Our SME sector needs an overhauling. We need improvement in our business environment, investment environment, and we need to also learn to be organised,” Simon Mboso Kiamputu, Minister of Industry and Small and Medium Enterprises, Congo, said at a session on SMEs at the conclave. Amid all the enthusiasm and inspired talk, leaders, businessmen and officials also found time to discuss real, all-tooreal problems that stand in the way of realising the full potential of economic partnership between the two sides. Ghana Vice-President Alhaji Aliu Mahama singled out connectivity as a key problem that needs to be addressed to enhance economic engagement and to encourage more investment from SMEs. Minister of State for External Affairs Anand Sharma agreed: “Connectivity is very high on our agenda. We want more African airlines to come to India and more Indian carriers to fly to Africa,” he assured. “The connectivity issue will figure prominently in discussions at the forthcoming India-Africa summit in April. It will also be discussed bilaterally with leaders of African countries,” Sharma, a prime mover of Indian diplomacy in Africa, said. “The government can nominate one or two airlines for each region. We have renewed an air service agreement with Ethiopia. You will see a visible change in this regard soon,” he said. Sharma also struck an upbeat note about the first-ever

Sonatrach are already here. We had 25 blocks, but now only four are left and we have a consortium of three Indian companies who are bidding for one of them.

summit between India and 14 African countries to be held in April, saying it will provide an action plan to take bilateral ties to new heights. The conclave witnessed the signing of five memoranda of understanding between: ! The Ministry of Commerce of India and the Ministry of Trade and Industry of Ethiopia, thus inviting the Indian industry to set up manufacturing and training facilities in Ethiopia, supported by access to land and fiscal incentives. ! CII and the Ethiopian Leather Council with focus on technology transfer and research. ! ILFS and South Africa on consultancy services provision. ! CII and Benin Chamber of Commerce for mutual co-operation. ! CII, NIIT and the KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa for IT training. Placing economic partnership in the larger context of India-Africa ties that will be the focus of India-Africa Forum Summit, India’s External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee stressed on closer relations not just economically, but also politically to jointly address international challenges of terrorism and climate change, as well reforms of the United Nations. “India and Africa are natural allies and we eagerly look forward to a comprehensive engagement with Africa, which has always enjoyed an important position in our foreign policy priorities,” Mukherjee said. “There is a substantial scope for cooperation between Africa and India in order to help provide a better quality of life for the people of both nations,” he said while putting people-centred development at the core of the India-Africa engagement. “Both sides are home to a wealth of biodiversity, substantial natural resources and hardworking populations. What we need is to identify areas of our core competence and match these with the economic and societal needs of a particular nation,” the external affairs minister said. “Knowledge sharing, knowledge creation and knowledge dissemination must be a vital component of our cooperation,” he stressed.

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PEACE uplift for Africa India’s military engagement with Africa is more than a tactical one — it is one of meaningful capacity building, says RANJIT KUMAR

F

rom looking after the security of a common man in Africa, preventing conflicts between warring tribes, safeguarding peace and stability in African society for more than five decades and providing maritime security to the Heads of State summit, Indian security forces have deeply engaged with the African people, governments and the 53-member African Union from the grass-roots level to top leadership. In fact, Indians and India have for long interacted deeply with Africa and fervently supported the continent’s cause. India has always stood behind the entire African continent in its quest for economic uplift, selfrule and independence. The socio-economic backwardness of the Africans led to their colonisation by western powers for many decades while India fought for Africans at all levels, even at the cost of annoying the big powers. But this was only in the form of moral and political support at various world fora and India gave no direct military help to the forces fighting the colonialists unlike the Soviets who adopted many rebel groups dubbed as pro-communists and revolutionaries. However, when most states even after gaining independence remained embroiled in ethnic struggles for power, India sent its forces under UN command for restoration of social and political normalcy. In large measure, India commands great respect among the African people owing to this gesture. Even today, Indian forces are present in significant numbers in Africa helping people normalise their lives. Ironically

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enough, though the Indians are the most popular forces among all peacekeepers, India has not yet been able to encash this goodwill for the country’s benefit. To help reorient the country’s engagement with Africa, India launched a ‘Focus Africa’ policy six years ago. The policy aims to improve trade and economic relations, deepen political dialogue, and develop better bilateral diplomatic relations. India was among the first to develop defence relations with African states when no other country wanted to venture into Africa because of low market potential and strategic value. However, Africa’s importance as energy rich area has been attracting world attention lately and big powers like US and China are forging special defence relations with the petroleum rich African states. The US administration has recently set up an African Command whereas the Chinese have adopted the strategy of directly helping regimes with arms and ammunition. The Chinese have gained a lot from this clever strategy and bagged a large number of oil fields and contracts which will help them in improving their energy security. The cash rich African states are now investing in training their forces and acquiring new weapon systems. The Chinese have offered them at low and friendly prices. Unlike the Chinese who send only peace keeping missions but do not deploy its forces for peacekeeping purposes in Africa, the Indians have taken an on the ground peacekeeping route. Recognising the importance of a stable polity as a prerequisite for economic progress, India continues to support peacekeeping efforts wherever required (See Africa Quarterly,

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A F R I C A Feb-April 2007, Ranjit Kumar, ‘Indian Troops in UN Peace Missions’). India has done so from the time of conflict in Biafra. In more recent times the contributions of our troops have been widely recognised in Ethiopia, Somalia, Sierra Leone and Eritrea. India has over 3,500 soldiers in the Democratic Republic of Congo and over 1,500 Indian soldiers on the Ethiopia, Somalia, Sierra Leone and Eritrea border. Indian forces have not only worked with troops from other nations to bring peace but also distinguished themselves for the exemplary fashion in which they have rendered humanitarian assistance and participated in development activities. However, when India took a grand, visionary and extremely ambitious step to connect the 53 countries of Africa through a network that uses satellite, fibre optic and wireless links it was not with the short-term aim of reaping any strategic fruit. Over the long term it will impact positively on the mindsets of the people. India, in partnership with the African Union and individual countries of Africa, is now in the process of establishing a network that links learning centres, universities and hospitals in every country of Africa. The project was signed on October 27, 2005. The Indian government has only focused on capacity building of the African forces for their self-defence and only in recent years has started promoting its energy security interests by forging defence and strategic partnerships. As most African countries lacked modern, professional military institutions they sent their officers to their former colonial powers while India was also one of their preferred destinations. Though India began offering training to the Africans since the 1960s, the interaction with African soldiers deepened only after the end of the Cold War when most of Africa was out of the clutches of the colonial powers. Many African officers and soldiers are today trained in India’s hallowed military institutions like the Indian Military Academy, National Defence College, and the Defence Services Staff College. Training is imparted in security and strategic studies, defence management, artillery, electronics, mechanical marine and aeronautical engineering, anti-marine warfare, logistics management and qualitative assurance specialisations. During the nineties more than 800 officers from 12 African countries (Botswana, Burkina Faso, Ghana, Kenya, Mauritius, Nigeria, Senegal, Madagascar, Seychelles, South Africa, Tanzania and Uganda) were trained by the Indian armed forces under the Indian Technical and Economic Cooperation programme (ITEC) conducted by the Ministry of External Affairs. India has also sent its army personnel to various African countries like Botswana, Zambia and Lesotho for local training. Indian military establishments have trained more than 1,000 African military leaders so far. Recently, India agreed to provide expertise to the small defence forces of the Central African Republic of Gabon in disaster management, training and healthcare during talks between the visiting Senior Minister for National Defence of Gabon, Ali Bongo Ondimba, and the Indian Defence Minister, A.K. Antony, in November 2007. India has also supplied some conventional weapons to Africa. In 1993, India exported patrol craft (SDB

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Mk-2 type) to Mauritius and Guinea Bissau, besides light helicopters (SA-316 B Aloutee-3 and SA-315 B Lama) to Namibia in 1994. India has also imported weapons from Africa. South Africa was the first country to help India with its modern technology weapon systems. When India became independent there were only four independent states in Africa — Egypt, Liberia, Ethiopia and South Africa. India had established diplomatic relations only with Egypt and Ethiopia while posting commissioners in countries ruled by the British (as a member of the Commonwealth) and accrediting them as Consul-Generals. Jawaharlal Nehru understood the importance of Africa long back and described the African continent as a next-door neighbour only separated by the Indian Ocean and delineated his thesis by saying that in historical perspective, Indian interests are likely to be bound up more and more with the growth of Africa. However, as Africa remained embroiled in internal strife and the colonialists would not allow any other power to step in, India could not further its policy of engagement with Africa. During Nehru’s regime, however, India set up a defence cooperation programme with Nigeria. Nigeria In 1964, India helped Nigeria set up a National Defence Academy. An Indian was appointed the first commandant and senior army officers were sent on deputation to help produce future military leaders of Nigeria. However, this did not lead to friendly, cordial relations between the two armies. Critics recall how a dispute between the Indian and Nigerian armies, both deployed in Sierra Leone under UNAMSIL in 2001, marred relations. However, India sent its Chief of Army Staff General J.J. Singh in 2006 and offered to modernise the Nigerian Army by providing modern training and equipment. “We cannot fight today’s wars with yesterday’s equipment; your equipment have to be upgraded and modernised to meet the challenges of tomorrow,” he told his Nigerian counterpart Martin Luther Agwai. General Singh noted that India intended to have close future ties in almost all areas to enhance the military to military cooperation. Responding, Agwai agreed and said that the Nigerian Army’s priority “was training and retraining of officers” and that the Indian army’s professional experience would be of immense use to Nigeria. “The Indian army is a stabilising force,” he was quoted as saying. In 2007, Dr. Manmohan Singh visited Nigeria to launch a strategic partnership — it was the first by an Indian Prime Minister in 45 years. After talks with the Nigerian leadership, the Abuja Declaration on strategic partnership was issued and the two sides signed an MoU on defence cooperation. India will assist Nigeria in training and will help set up two information technology labs at the Nigerian Defence Academy. Lesotho In recent years, there has been increasing cooperation in defence ties between India and Lesotho with both sides

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enhancing exchanges of observers in exercises and bilateral visits. The defence cooperation between the two countries got a boost after they signed an MoU on training in 2001. The Commander of Lesotho’s Defence Forces, Lt Gen E.T. Motanyane, visited the Northern Command of the Indian Army and training schools this year and met Indian Army Chief General Deepak Kapoor, Defence Secretary Vijay Singh and other senior officials of the Defence Ministry. Gen Motanyane had earlier visited India twice — in December 1999 and June 2003. Some senior army officers from India also visited Lesotho in 2003. In recent years, India’s political interaction has been promoted through the Indian Army Training Team (IAAT). Soon after the May 1998 elections, the Lesotho Government had requested India for a training team to help train the Lesotho Defence Force into a professional force. After the signing of an Inter-Governmental Cooperation Agreement on Military Training Cooperation in May 2001, a 15-member IATT has been in position in Lesotho since June 2001. Two army doctors joined IATT in end-2003. Lesotho has appreciated the work of the team. Later in February 2004, the ViceChief of Army Staff, Lt Gen J.B.S. Yadava, visited Lesotho to review IATT’s performance. South Africa South Africa has the most powerful military force in Africa and India has developed strong links with post-apartheid South Africa. Actually the military ties between India and South Africa have gone from strength to strength, ever since the two countries signed a comprehensive agreement on defence. There are regular high-level visits between the two, with R&D organisations and industries of the two countries developing fraternal relations. In recent times, India has bought the Caspir mine protected vehicles from South Africa. The India-South Africa defence relationship and partnership has been taken to a new level by expanding its scope to Brazil. The alliance — called IBSA — is now a force to reckon with at world fora. As African forces accepted invitations from the Indian armed forces to participate or witness exercises, Indian forces also went to Africa to participate in their exercises. Hosted by Botswana in 2002 and initiated by the South African National Defence Exercise Force (SANDF), ‘Exercise Airborne Africa’ was one of the major exercises held in Africa in recent times. This exercise was an endurance and tactical competition among various airborne units of African nations. Around 28 army teams from 12 countries including Botswana, France, India, Malawi, Malaysia, Senegal, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, UK, USA and Zimbabwe participated. The Indian team was declared the overall winner, having bagged the top position in endurance, navigation and casualty evacuation. Then Army Chief General S. Padmanabhan visited Botswana to observe the exercise. In February this year, the Indian Navy organised the ‘Indian Ocean Naval Symposium’ and invited littoral African states besides the Indian Ocean Island States of Seychelles, Mauritius and Madagascar. India can help pro-

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mote peace and stability in the Indian Ocean with the help and cooperation of the littoral countries and is seeking the partnership of African countries to rid the Indian Ocean of rogue elements who obstruct trade and commerce. Kenya India has a very special relationship with Kenya. According to an official paper of the Indian Ministry of External Affairs, Kenya attaches special significance to military relations with India, hence they set up an office of the defence advisor/attaché in 1980 at Kenyan High Commission in New Delhi. Since then, cooperation in terms of training and joint exercises between the two militaries has increased manifold. Many Kenyan military commanders, from the early years of Kenyan independence, have come for various courses in India. Over the years, the Kenyan military have made tremendous progress in terms of establishing training institutions in Kenya. There are two military training academies, Kenya National Defence College (NDC) and Kenya Defence Staff College (DSC), which offer annual courses to foreign military personnel. Joint exercises continue between Indian and Kenyan militaries. Deepening the relationship, today, military personnel from both countries are involved in civil projects in the areas of health and education in Kenya. Island Nations India has made special efforts to develop exclusive defence and security partnerships with the Island nations of Africa and all the three — Madagascar, Seychelles and Mauritius — occupy a special place in India’s Indian Ocean security strategy. Besides giving a sense of security to the Island nations, India marks its presence in this vast ocean through these Island nations. Even as India provides its naval ships to these nations to guard their shores, India also helps them in maintaining their defence infrastructure. Last year, India set up a listening post in Madagascar, which will provide India with electronic snooping capability in the South Western Indian Ocean. By strengthening its presence in the east coast of Africa, India is also trying to secure sea lanes of communication and monitoring facilities in Madagascar as part of India’s naval and maritime strategy. To the east of Madagascar is Mauritius with which India has developed a very close defence and security relationship and India is looking at developing other listening facilities on one of the islands of Mauritius. With Seychelles India has further strengthened its longstanding defence ties by handing over one of its naval ships ‘INS Taramugli’ for regular surveillance of the coastal areas of the island nation. A few helicopters have also been gifted to Seychelles while Indian naval ships call on the island nation regularly. In 2003, ‘INS Investigator’ transported military stores (small arms and ammunition), gifted by India, to the SPDF (Seychelles Peoples Defence Force). India started giving more emphasis to its relations with Seychelles after 9/11 and for the first time conducted a joint

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A F R I C A military exercise, including training in airborne and anti-terrorist operations. A contingent of the Indian Army’s Special Forces and the Indian Air Force joined personnel of the Seychelles People’s Defence Forces (SPDF) for the fortnightlong exercise held in November 2001. The IAF also dispatched two AN-32 medium transport aircraft to participate in the exercise. An airborne exercise in the Praslin islands was part of the programme. Indian Special Forces provided special training in counter-terrorist operations and VIP security to the SPDF and Seychelles’ Barborron Unit. Indian Army officials said the joint exercise would provide “valuable experience” to Special Forces personnel in conducting airborne operations in the ocean. The Indian contingent, which went to Seychelles, comprised 18 officers, 12 junior commissioned officers and 23 non-commissioned officers. “The recent visit of an Indian Navy ship and the forthcoming joint exercises are two examples of the spirit of friendship and cooperation which exists between the governments and the people of the two countries,” a spokesman said. He said Seychelles was vulnerable to regional, political and economic “manipulative pressures and military threats, besides internal subversion and sabotage”. Such threats had increased following a reduction in the presence of major powers in the Indian Ocean region following the end of the Cold War. Military training would also enhance economic and defence collaboration with Seychelles on a continuing basis, the spokesman said. In fact, India laid the foundation for security cooperation with Mauritius in 1974 when she handed over a naval ship ‘AMAR’ for coastal surveillance. An interceptor boat ‘INS Observer’ was provided in 2001 and the high point of security cooperation came when a Dornier 228 maritime surveillance aircraft was gifted to Mauritius. Since early 2003, India has been patrolling the Exclusive Economic Zone of Mauritius. According to the Indian Ministry of External Affairs, under an agreement concluded in 1974, Indian defence officers (from the IAF and Indian Navy) are sent on deputation with the National Coast Guard and the Helicopter Squadron of the Mauritian Police Force (MPF). In addition, under the ITEC programme, extensive training facilities in Indian defence training establishments are provided to MPF personnel. This training covers both long and short duration courses. India is also the largest supplier of defence equipment to Mauritius. In 2004, the Bangalore-based Hindustan Aeronautics Limited delivered a Dornier DO-288 maritime aircraft to Mauritius. According to the Indian Navy, India has made considerable progress in hydrographic cooperation in the Indian Ocean region especially with Mauritius and Seychelles. For Mauritius, the Indian naval survey ship ‘Sarvekshak’ carried out hydrographic surveys of Port Louis Harbour and Agalega Island of Mauritius in 2006. On the basis of an MoU signed in 2005 the Navy is engaged in more surveys in Mauritius. Admiral Sureesh Mehta, Chief of the Naval Staff, handed over the Indian edition of the navigational chart of Port Louis Harbour and Approaches along with the first ever chart of Agalega island to His Excellency Dr. Navinchandra

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Ramgoolam, the Prime Minister of Mauritius. For Seychelles also, the Indian Navy conducted similar surveys of Seychelles waters in 2003, and in 2006, the Navy handed over a preliminary hydrographic fair tracing to the Seychelles VicePresident. The National Hydrographic School at Goa also trains hydrographers from these African Island countries. Sudan India developed a special relationship with Sudan from the days of Mahatma Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru. Continuing this tradition, India has offered military training and defence equipment technology to Sudan for an ambitious 20-year plan to revive and develop its army. India and Sudan have maintained cordial and friendly relations since its independence in 1956. A ‘Sudan Block’ in India’s National Defence Academy is a tribute to this relationship. The two countries have several institutional arrangements and building on this relationship, India has in recent years invested in Sudanese oil fields. India has also stationed more than 3,000 troops under UN command whose role is widely appreciated by the Sudanese and the international community. Mozambique On Mozambique’s request, India signed an MoU in 2006 based on which both countries have agreed to promote and expand bilateral relations in defence to the advantage of their armed forces. The pact covers military technical cooperation and logistic support/training. It includes maritime patrolling of the Mozambican coast, mutual training in military institutes, supply of defence equipment, transfer of know-how and technology for assembly and repair of vehicles, aircraft and ships as well as rehabilitation of military infrastructure. A joint working group will coordinate its implementation. Mozambique is situated to the west of Madagascar to which India provided maritime patrolling support during Africa Union Summit. The high point in the India-Africa defence relations came when two warships of the Indian Navy, ‘INS Ranjit’ and ‘INS Suvarna’ helped Mozambique in ensuring security for the second summit of the Heads of States of African Union, held in Maputo from July 4-12, 2003. The President of the Republic of Mozambique, Joaquim Chissano, accompanied by senior officials of his government and the High Commissioner of India, Avinash C. Gupta, visited the Indian Navy ships and was presented a guard of honour. Replying to a question, the President said that Indian Naval ships had come not only to protect Mozambicans, but also the African Heads of States during the Union summit. With each African nation, India has tried to forge independent defence relations by helping them maintain peace and stability — more in terms of capacity building than supply of arms and ammunition. Africa offers great possibilities for Indian defence forces to help the continent stabilise economically and politically by providing Africans a secure environment for growth and development. ■

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India’s mindshare in ETHIOPIA India’s presence in Ethiopia goes back a long way, particularly in the field of education, where Indian teachers have left a deep impress on generations of students, says A.S. YARUINGAM

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to Getachew Tesfayi works as a senior dealing assistant at the Ministry of Education, Government of Ethiopia. He interacts directly with Indian teachers working in the country. By virtue of that, he is one of the most regularly invited guests at the Addis Ababa University Indian Teachers Forum (AUITF) get-together. Whenever asked to say a few words, he invariably states: “I was taught by an Indian teacher in high school and thus my relationship with India is not new but age-old.” Just two weeks after my joining Addis Ababa University, a local professor from my department was kind enough to drop me home after office. In the course of our conversation, he mentioned his Indian teacher, Mrs. Chawla, who disciplined him dearly whenever he preformed badly in tests and helped him do his best. Such are the usual comments from many middle aged educated elite of Ethiopia, be it at bus stands, in offices or in restaurants, whenever they meet Indians. In fact, in one way

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or other, Indian teachers have had the privilege of teaching most of the middle-aged educated Ethiopians during their primary and high school days, earning their affection and respect. An editorial note of the Indian Association Journal says: “There may be no high school graduate in this country who has not been taught by Indian teachers. The Indian teachers can derive satisfaction from the fact they have all along received due respect from their students. Thousands and thousands of Ethiopians in government and private jobs, in business and elsewhere, speak of their Indian teachers with pride.”1 As French philosopher and social theorist Jacques Derrida2 argued, “in language there is a presence of meaning best hidden behind it”, a deeper meaning is shrouded behind the usual comments of Ethiopian friends on their relationship with Indian teachers. And this hidden meaning underlines one of the important facets about the ties between the two great nations — India and Ethiopia –– that has remained latent for almost a century in the field of education. Today, in Ethiopia, Indians are highly regarded as the best

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teachers in the world. If one walks down Piazza or Markato, the two most popular shopping centres in Addis Ababa, even ordinary people on the roadside or restaurant tea boys will address us as “teacher”. They have the impression that every Indian in the country is a teacher. In a sense, they are right; even today, most Indians working in this part of the continent, especially in Ethiopia and Eritrea, are teachers in schools, universities or vocational institutions. Therefore, although India may not have made a huge financial investment in the region as have China or Japan, the country has made a crucial investment in the most vital of sectors — education of Ethiopia. Emperor Haile Sallesie, during this visit to India in 1956, acknowledged Students of Addis Ababa University interact with their professor. India’s contribution: “We are happy to say that the Indians living in our country consider it as their this region’s education is some two generations old. Indian second homeland, and the contribution they are making in the teachers began coming to East Africa more than half a centufield of education and in other fields has given us great satis- ry ago. Mr. George, an assistant teacher in one of the prominent international school in Addis Ababa, came here during faction and elicited appreciation.”3 Today, there are about 600 university professors and more the early part of 1960. One day he told me that by the time he than 700 high school and primary school teachers working in came to Addis Ababa as an English teacher in a high school, Ethiopia.4 Thus, to see India’s investment in the Horn of there were already several Indians working in various schools Africa (Ethiopia), one has to look at in terms of “human capac- in the country. Mr. Thomas came to Addis Ababa as a young bachelor. After a few years he got married and brought his ity-building” rather than monetary investment. Education is the backbone for all-round development. Indian bride to Ethiopia. Now both of them teach in internaWithout education, development in any sense would be an tional schools. They have three children who were all born and ephemeral social phenomena and unsustainable. A Confucius brought up in Ethiopia. Professor Sharma and his wife came from Delhi to Addis proverb says: “If you plan for one year, cultivate rice, if you plan for ten years, plant trees, but if you are planning for hundred years, Ababa almost half a century ago. He teaches English at Addis Ababa University. Likewise, there are several Indian teachers educate the people.” The indispensability of education for the development of a who came in the early 1960s and have been working since then society is more vividly exhibited in the economic sector. In this in various parts of the country. Their children are born and brought up there and in many era of knowledge societies, it would be impossible even to think of development, especially economic development, ways have acquired the culture, customs and traditions of the without education. Wharton’s writing clearly revealed the land. For instance, many of them have adopted the food habits inseparable relationship between education and economic of the native people like enjera (Ethiopian traditional staple development. He wrote5, (1966): “In the broadest sense, education food), berando, (raw meat), and Kitfo and shiro, (side dishes), is a perceived experience which leads to a change in future behaviour without any difficulty. They have also acquired local religious patterns — both external behaviour patterns such as physical action, and practices and visit Ethiopian shrines and offer obeisance to internal behaviour patterns such as cognition, reflection and other men- their gods, believing in the miracles of the deity as the tal processes. Education is a process whereby new knowledge is trans- Ethiopians do. In a way, these Indians have become Ethiopians mitted and acquired by man. But the new knowledge must be perceived in terms of habits and manner of living, but they are not legal and it must alter the future behaviour patterns. Economic growth to a citizens since Ethiopian laws do not permit citizenship. Talking to them unfolds many interesting facts and stories large extent depends on this alteration of human behaviour because man is the primary catalyst of the productive processes through his man- about Indian teachers living in this part of the continent. This paper is a modest attempt to explore the socio-historagerial ability and he is also a key factor of production through his physical labour. Education and learning involve a changing in human ical processes of the role of Indian expatriate teachers in the development of education in Ethiopia. The article also behaviour and is therefore crucial to economic growth.” India’s investment in the Horn of Africa has to be seen attempts to define the basic features and the changing persona from this perspective. The involvement of Indian teachers in of Indian teachers in the Horn of African countries during the

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period of their working here with special emphasis on ance and language. The identical, dark skinned complexion8 Ethiopia. The paper looks at the changes that have taken place of south Indians and Ethiopians, the similarities of food such during the last few years, in terms of composition, coverage as the Ethiopian staple of enjera with the south Indian dosa, the and the process of acculturation among Indians and the local spices used for cooking Ethiopian dorowat and the Indian chicken curry are some of the examples that point towards the people. The paper will also attempt to unfold an interesting aspect fact that, at some point of time, there was a very close and regof the relationship that India has had with the Horn of Africa ular interaction between the two old nations. Historian for more than half a century and, thus, enable us to look at this Mutthuna cites several similarities between Amharic, the relationship in a new perspective in the context of the chang- Ethiopian national language, and Dravidian, the southern Indian language script. ing global socio-economic environment. The relationship was further strengthened during the coloThe source of information for this article is from primary data gathered through conversations, interviews and observa- nial period when the British drafted many Ethiopians as tion. In spite of the long-standing presence of Indians in the labourers to India while a large numbers of Indians were region, there has hardly been any research in this area with lit- recruited as soldiers and sent to Ethiopia to fight the Ethiopian tle or no literature on the subject. Owing to this fact, I have Emperor, Theodore-II, during the 19th century9. In the 20th century this age-old bond was mostly relied on information It is not easy to pinpoint the reinforced and strengthened by collected from first-hand priIndians who came to Ethiopia as mary sources. exact period when Indian India’s relations with the teachers arrived in Ethiopia for teachers. For want of proper records, it is North Eastern Africa, or the want of proper records. But not easy to pinpoint the exact Horn of Africa, is age-old and has comprehensive social, with the help of available literature, period when Indian teachers first in Ethiopia. But with the cultural, political, educationand conversations with Indians arrived help of available literature, and al and economic dimensions. As Emperor Haile Selassie-I living in Ethiopia, it is understood conversations with Indians living in Ethiopia, it is understood that once remarked, “There are that the first Indian expatriate first Indian expatriate teachers many bonds which bind teachers arrived in East Africa, the arrived in East Africa (Ethiopia) in India and Ethiopia.”6 (Ethiopia) in the 1940s. Edward the 1940s. Edward Ullendorf10, in Geographically, the two regions are nce divided by the Ullendorf, in his book, Ethiopia: his book, Ethiopia: The Land and Indian Ocean. In fact, early the People, says that during the The land and the People, says geographers believed that 1960s there were many foreigners that during the 1960s there were who were teaching in schools. East Africa was once a part of the Indian subcontinent;7 but Among them there were many many foreigners who were during the changes that He says that unlike expateaching in schools. Among them Indians. occurred to the land masses triates from other countries, who there were many Indians. down millennia, the region come as volunteer workers, drifted away from India and Indians came to Ethiopia in came to exist as a separate continent. It was perhaps owing to search of jobs and most of them sought them out in schools. this reason that historians believe there was regular interaction One could ask, what were the reasons that led many edubetween the people of the Horn and India through trade and cated Indians to come to Ethiopia as teachers at that point of commerce. time in history? Was it economically profitable to work in the country despite Ethiopia being one of the poorer African counCultural Affinities tries? It is also pertinent to enquire what were the social-cultural changes that have taken place among the Indians over the India exported cotton, spices and red pepper whereas last several decades of interaction with the native people. Ethiopia exported hides, coffee and ivory. During the Mughal To understand and answer these questions in proper perperiod, people from the Horn came to India as slaves and sol- spective, it is necessary to look at the history of India and diers, and later became members of royal families. In course Ethiopia. One of the landmark differences in the history of the of time, a few of these slave descendants were elevated to high two nations was the entry of Europeans during the last part of positions in the emperors’ courts. In fact, some writers go to the 18th century in Africa and Asia. India came under the the extent of saying that Ethiopians were Indians, or Ethiopians domination of the British that continued for almost 200 years, were Indians in ancient times. There is evidence that proves whereas none of the European powers ruled over Ethiopia, this theory when we see the socio-cultural affinities that have except for a brief intervention by Italy. existed between the two regions. Today, we can find many British rule was a blessing in disguise for India — especialsocial and cultural similarities between the people of India ly in the field of education. The British introduced Western and Ethiopia in terms of food habits, music, physical appear- education in the country. Besides, Christian missionaries also

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set up several schools, especially for the poorer sections of the society. English was the medium of instruction in these schools. Thus, during the middle of the 20th century, India produced an English-speaking class who, however, could not get proper employment. On the other side, there was a different situation in Ethiopia. Till the early part of the 20th century, education in Ethiopia was completely under the control of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church (EOC). The sole purpose of school was to impart religious knowledge and the medium of teaching was Geez — the traditional ancient Abyssinian language. Western education was introduced at a very late stage — in 1908 — when Emperor Menelik-II set up the Menelik-II Senior Secondary School in Addis Ababa. This resulted in a serious crisis of skilled manpower, which the country was in dire need of for its economic and political development. Ethiopia started looking for primary and high school teachers outside the country. And, coincidentally, India happened to be the country that could provide them with so many of its unemployed Englishspeaking educated class. Thus, a new vista of relationship opened up between Ethiopia and India. Since then, year after year, Ethiopians came to India to recruit teachers. By the 1960s, most schoolteachers in Ethiopia were Indians. However, at this stage, most of the Indian teachers in Ethiopia were from states like Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Gujarat — perhaps owing to the higher levels of literacy in these states. However, the situation changed after a few years. Indians from different parts of the country began their Ethiopian odyssey. Considering the economic condition of the country at that time, it is reasonable to ask, was it profitable for Indians to work in Ethiopia at that point of time as teachers? Economically, Ethiopia has been a poor country since the early 1960s. However, Indians, whom I interacted with, told me that in true economic sense, working in Ethiopia was more profitable

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than working in India though the country was never rich economically. This was due to several reasons. First, the Ethiopian currency, birr, had a higher exchange value than the Indian rupee. Therefore, even though the total emoluments were rather low, when converted into rupees, it turned out to be better. Second, at the same time, the living cost in the country was low. During my conversations, I came to know that one Ethiopian birr, which is equivalent to Rs. 5 today, was sufficient for a medium-sized family dinner in a middle-class restaurant. Though salaries paid to Indians in those days were not very high in terms of face value, because of the low cost of living and the advantage accruing from the exchange rate, Indians working in Ethiopia could make better savings. Indians, who are by nature particular about saving, thus found Ethiopia to be a good country to invest their time and energy in. Third, the possibility of securing jobs for their spouses was another incentive for Indians to seek out teaching opportunities in the country. Securing a job for both husband and wife in India was an ask those days. But the situation is different in Africa, especially in Ethiopia. If the couple is educated up to high school, they can get jobs easily. Besides, in Ethiopia, there are opportunities to teach in more than one school. Even today there are many Indians working in more than one school and thus have doubled their earnings. Furthermore, most of the teachers are also engaged in private tuitions. Thus, the accumulated earnings of an Indian teacher in Ethiopia is higher than that of a salaried person in India. Through conversations I also discovered that Indians who have been working in Ethiopia for more than two to three decades were mostly from economically weak backgrounds. They came to Ethiopia empty-handed in search of jobs, but today most of them have acquired land and property in India.

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Indian teachers at a gathering in Ethiopia

Moreover, their children are well educated and have high-paying jobs. Most study in America and Europe. Transforming Profile Several changes have taken place among Indian teachers over the last few decades. First are the changes in the composition of Indian teachers. Till the 1970s, most of the Indian teachers came to Ethiopia to work as schoolteachers. This has changed. Since the 1980s, most Indian teachers who came to Ethiopia are largely professors and instructors in higher educational institutions. Thus the number of university professors has increased while primary and high school teachers have seen their ranks decline. Such a change is understandable because, by the 1980s, many local students taught by Indian teachers had graduated and now teach in high schools themselves. Though there are many Indians teaching in schools, most of them are part-time earners who work at universities or with private firms. On the other hand, the number of university professors and instructors has swelled. This trend came about as the Ethiopian government began to expand institutions of higher education from the 1980s through UNDP and World Bank funding. Every year the Education advertises for professors from abroad — owing to two reasons. First, students prefer Indian professors as Indian teachers in the schools already teach most of the students who join university/college. In my informal interaction with many students, they told me that they don’t have any difficulty in understanding the lectures by Indian teachers and therefore prefer them to teachers from other countries. Thus, Indians teachers command high esteem and demand among Ethiopian students. Second, comparatively, Indian professors are comfortable with the salaries offered. The salaries offered

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to expatriates do not attract university teachers from other English-speaking countries, especially from developed countries. Ph.D. holders who work in private institutions in India earn higher incomes in Ethiopia and build better savings. It is like a meeting of two willing partners in matrimony. So, today, there are more than 500 Indian professors working in different universities and technical institutes in the country. Meanwhile, Ethiopians have also benefited from the experience of Indian professors. Most of these teachers are Ph.D. holders and have experience of 5 to 10 years in different institutes in India. Besides, many of them are highly qualified, retired professors from Indian universities. Changing Times An important change that has come about among Indian teachers is their composition. Earlier, educated middle-class people from Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala dominated the scene, but today there are Indians from all parts of the country. In recent times, people from Utter Pradesh, Orissa, Bihar, Haryana, Uttaranchal, Punjab, Jammu & Kashmir and Manipur have been coming to Ethiopia. In tune with the changing times, there has also been a change in requirements. Ethiopian universities today demand professors from fields such as medicine, engineering, information technology and management. There is high demand for professors in pharmacy and education. Ethiopian universities offer better salaries to teachers in these fields. Therefore, the number of Indian professors in these fields has risen significantly. What are the socio-cultural changes that occurred among Indians in the course of their interaction with the natives over the years? Culture is a permutable social phenomenon. It is

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A F R I C A the outcome of one’s regular and long-time interaction with the environment and people around. Thus, no human group can remain isolated or unaffected by the socio-cultural milieu of the society in which he lives. In spite of a latent desire of communities to often keep to themselves, no Indian who has lived in this part of the world remains unaffected by the cultural environment of Ethiopian society. When one looks at the process of social acculturalisation of Indians with the local community, Indians can be classified into two categories based on their socio-cultural backgrounds in India: Christians and Muslims on the one hand, and Hindus and others, on the other. This difference in their socio-cultural backgrounds affects the level and nature of their interaction with the native Ethiopian community. It is relevant to note that Christianity came to Ethiopia and became a national religion in the 4th century, followed by Islam in the 7th century. Today, out of 75 million people in Ethiopia, 45 percent are Muslim and 45 percent Orthodox Christians. Therefore, the socio-cultural ethos of these two dominant religions has greatly influenced the country’s cultural environment. One of these is cuisine. Non-vegetarian food, and, to an extent, eating raw meat is part of Ethiopian society’s gastronomic culture. As a result, Indians who came from Christian and Muslim backgrounds found it easy to associate with the native people. Through my conversations with some Indians, I found that Christians and Muslims, who have been living in the country for more than 20 years, are extremely fond of the traditional Ethiopian enjera and tela. On the other hand, Indians who came from rigid Hindu social cultural backgrounds found it difficult to share their table with locals who were purely nonvegetarian. I discovered that some of them, despite having lived here for long, still found it hard to give up traditions — acculturisation, therefore, became a little difficult. When it comes to religious beliefs and ritual practices, I found that many Christian and Muslim Indians have shared a convivial relationship with the native people of their own religious groups. Many Indian who are Muslims go to mosques and perform namaz along with native Ethiopian

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Muslims. During Ramadan or Eid, they participate in their celebrations. In the same manner, Christians, during Christmas and Easter, celebrate together with the native Christians and other foreigners. On important occasions, Indian Hindus celebrate with their neighbours by distributing sweets. Some Indian families make a trip to Harar (an ancient city located in the southern part of the country) where there is a revered Indian shrine, to offer prayers and perform Hindu rituals. Conclusion According to the 2004 census, the population of Ethiopia was 74 million and is growing at a fast pace of about 3.2 percent per annum. Simultaneously, the economy of the country is growing at the rate of 11 percent. Therefore, there is a huge demand for skilled manpower in the country. In light of the demand, there has been a proliferation of educational institutions at the primary and high school levels. This has resulted in increasing demand for enrolment of students at universities, which has a limited capacity at present. For example, with the available infrastructure in Addis Ababa University, enrolment for courses undergraduate courses stood at 120-130 students and 100-150 for post-graduate courses. This shows the crisis in institutions of higher education and the need for expansion of universities. The Ministry of Education will be setting up 14 universities in the coming years. Therefore, there is going to be a huge demand for teachers in the country. To some extent, trained graduate teachers may fill some of the interim vacancies, but the country will still need the services of expatriates if they want to make higher education successful. Indian professors can continue to take advantage of the demand. However, the benefit is not one sided: the Ethiopian Government can also take advantage of India’s high-tech knowledge base and build up the country as one of the power sources of IT for all African countries. Technological knowledge is not the heritage or exclusive right of one nation or race; it is a public asset sans borders. ■

Notes and References 1. Editorial Note. ‘New Vision’, An Indian Association Journal, Vol. 1, No. 1, 1978. 2. Derrida, Jacques, ‘Of Grammatology’, translated by Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak, Baltimore, Johns Hopkins Press, 1967, reprinted 1984, Pp. 152. 3. Muthaana, ‘Indo-Ethiopian Relations for Centuries’, Articitic Printing Press, Addis Ababa, 1961, Pp. 169. 4. This figure is according to a source from the Indian Embassy. But since there has been no proper record, the number of teachers working in Ethiopia is not exactly known. Therefore, the number could be even more or less. 5. Clifton & Wharton, Jr., ‘Education and Agricultural Growth: The Role of Education in Early-Stage Agriculture’, in ‘Education and the Economic Development’, Edited by C. Arnold Anderson and Mary Jean Bowman, Chicago, Aldine Publishing Company, 1963. Pp. 202.

6. Muthanna (1961), Pp. 1. 7. In ancient times, India was divided into two regions known as Middle India and Greater India. This Middle India was called Abascia, which was referred to as Ethiopia. This record is found in the ‘Travels of Marco Polo’. For more detailed information, refer to ‘Indo-Ethiopian Relations for Centuries’, by Muthanna. 8. My roommate in the department is a dark-complexioned Tamilian. His appearance is strikingly similar to that of an Ethiopian and in the beginning many students who came for consultations often mistook him for an Ethiopian and talked to him in Amharic, the local language. 9. Pankhurts, Richard, ‘The Historic Image of Ethiopia’, Addis Ababa, Sama Books, 2005, Pp. 172. 10. Edward, Ullendorf, ‘Ethiopia: The land and the People’, London, Oxford Publishing House, 1976, Pp. 239.

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Building bridges, CONNECTING cultures From trading to politics to matrimony, Indian workers, lawyers, doctors and teachers have all helped to forge enduring bonds between Africa and India, says SHUBHA SINGH

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frica and India have shared age-old contacts, as the Indian Ocean has been a region for peaceful commerce and navigation for centuries. The wooden dhows with their triangular sails catching the monsoon winds sailed across the Indian Ocean laden with fine muslin, ivory and beads. Small Indian settlements grew along the African coastal areas as far back as the seventh century as merchants waited for the monsoon winds to change direction and take them back across the waters. Africans travelled across the ocean to find jobs in the courts and armies of Indian rulers. Today, it is the Indian diaspora, the people of Indian descent living in African countries, who form an enduring link between India and Africa. Archaeological evidence, arts, coins and ancient texts all indicate that the network of mercantile trade is many millennia old. India’s early trading contacts with Egypt are said to have existed before 3000 BC. Indians from the Malabar region of southern India had been trading with Mozambique for

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over five centuries. Surat in Gujarat was a regular trading port for trade with the Madagascar and East African coastal ports in the 1770s. Contact between Africa and India intensified during the colonial era but the nature of the relationship changed vastly during that period. From mainly trading links, it became a relationship of regular migration from India to different parts of Africa during the colonial era. Indians went to Africa to look for work and better economic opportunities. Several generations of Indians have settled in Africa and made it their home. Today, Indian communities, big and small, flourish in several African states — they range from the million strong Indian diaspora in South Africa to the few thousand Indians in Mozambique, a few hundreds in Benin and about two dozen Indians in Guinea Bissau. The main part of the migration from India was to Mauritius, Reunion Island, South Africa, Kenya and Uganda in the 19th and early 20th centuries. In the later decades, Indians began to settle in other African countries as well. Mauritius, Reunion, Kenya and Tanzania have sizeable populations of Indian descent, while there are smaller Indian communities in

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A F R I C A Botswana, Ghana, Seychelles, Zimbabwe, Nigeria, Mozambique and Madagascar. Indians living in Africa are well integrated in their adoptive home countries and are actively involved in almost all aspects of life in the host societies. Indian expatriates have moved into new regions in Africa in recent years and there are now about 1,500 Indians living in Lesotho working as businessmen, teachers, accountants and other professionals. In recent decades, more Indians have found jobs in African countries. There are about 17,000 Indians in Nigeria, 15,000 in Kenya, 3,000 in Zambia, about 6,000 in Botswana and Uganda, and 500 in Eritrea. Indians were initially taken to Mauritius, Reunion Island and South Africa as indentured workers for the sugar plantations during the colonial period. The Indian workers fulfilled the labour requirements in the colonies after slavery was abolished in the British Empire. The indentured workers laboured under harsh conditions, overworked and malnourished, and lived in cramped conditions. But they transformed the sugar economy of Natal. In 1857, Natal exported sugar worth £2,009, by 1863 its exports had gone up to £26,000 and in the next year £100,000 worth of sugar was exported from the colony. East Africa Indians were brought to East Africa to build railway lines from Mombassa to the shores of Lake Victoria in Uganda, in the late 19th century. The workers cleared the jungle and laid the tracks. As construction began, large numbers of Indians, such as hawkers, camp cooks, washermen, barbers and petty shopkeepers began arriving to cater for the needs of the railway workers. While the majority of the rail workers returned home, the support workers stayed on. Indians began trading, set up small shops called dukas and travelled into rural areas to sell their goods. Later, these migrants found jobs in Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania as skilled workers and artisans. Some joined the lower levels of the bureaucracy while many others became accountants, lawyers and supervisors. The Kenya-Uganda railroad opened up the hinterland for economic development and new areas of settlement. Indians were recruited to work for the railways — the Shire Highlands Railways, the Trans-Zambezian Railways, the Nyasaland Railways and the Malawi Railways. Asian employees largely ran the railways in the early decades — they were stationmasters, guards, conductors, locomotive drivers, administrative staff and storekeepers. Railways have been a connecting factor between India and Africa. Indian experts have worked on railway projects in Algeria, Ghana, Guinea, Mozambique, Nigeria, Congo, Zimbabwe and Zambia in the second half of the 20th century. It was the Indian trader, who ventured into the interior regions in the African hinterland and opened up remote regions for trade. Indian traders acted as the conduit for the produce of distant regions for sale in urban areas. Indian traders also set up dukas in remote areas, and from small beginnings helped replace the barter trade, in vogue then, with the

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system of monetary transaction. The Indians also made a valuable contribution to the economy — their habit of saving helped generate capital for the expansion of the economy. They were pioneering entrepreneurs in several sectors. In Uganda, Indians dominated cotton ginning and curing of coffee. In Tanzania, many of the large sisal and other plantations were Asian-owned, and most post-World War II development in Kenya was fuelled by Indian enterprise and capital. Thousands of teachers from India have gone to remote hinterland towns in Africa to teach in schools. As far back as 1947, scores of Indian teachers went to Addis Ababa and the interior villages to work in local schools. The Ethiopian government has honoured many of them for their contributions to education in Ethiopia. The Indian teacher is an abiding symbol of the Indian focus in empowerment through human resource development in several African countries. Mauritius Indian migration to Mauritius began in 1834 when the first lot of indentured workers landed at ‘Apravasi Ghat’, now a heritage site in the island. The relative proximity of Mauritius to India meant it was cheaper to obtain Indian workers and thus the number of Indians increased over the years. Indians form 70 percent of the population in Mauritius. Indians were also taken to Reunion Island as agricultural workers when it was a French colony. Shortly afterwards, merchants, traders and artisans from Gujarat arrived in the island looking for better economic opportunities. The Indians in Reunion number about 180,000 and form almost 25 percent of the total population. As Reunion became part of metropolitan France, the Indians became French citizens and assimilated French culture. South Africa There are about 1.2 million people of Indian descent living in South Africa. They form 2.6 percent of South Africa’s pop-

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An Indian temple in Kampala, Uganda

ulation and the majority of the Indian community (about 70 percent) lives in the KwaZulu-Natal province, mainly concentrated in the Durban area. The Indian community in South Africa is a mixed one with a small elite of rich businessmen and prosperous professionals and a sizeable hardworking middle class. During the apartheid era of compulsory racial segregation, several large townships were established for Indians at Chatsworth, Phoenix and Lenasia. Many Indians are the fourth-or-fifth generation descendants of the Indians brought to work on the plantations. Indian workers in Natal, after completing their five-year indenture term, had to find other means of livelihood; some reverted to their original occupations to become barbers, carpenters, blacksmiths while others took up market gardening. In the early 1870s, Indians began arriving as free migrants after paying their own passage. They were lawyers, doctors, businessmen, office workers, accountants and other professionals. In the absence of state funding for education and welfare, it was private, charitable donations from within the Indian community that helped establish schools and carry out welfare work. Sastri College, the first high school for Indian students, was opened in Durban in 1929. Organised political activity among the Indian community began with the founding of the Natal Indian Congress with Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi as its first secretary. Botswana Indians have been living in Botswana for almost a century. The first Gujarati traders arrived in the early years of the 20th century, soon set up other business activities and acquired local citizenship. It was in the 1960s, after the diamond rush in Botswana, that a second wave of Indians arrived in the country from other African states like South Africa, Zambia and Kenya. The economic boom led to a shortage of skilled manpower and the government resorted to recruiting teachers, doctors, engineers and civil servants from India in the 1980s. There is now a thriving community of people of Indian

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origin. Djibouti has a few hundred French nationals of Indian origin. Most of them run small businesses or work for large enterprises. India has had an honorary consul-general in Djibouti since 1969. Eritrea has about 30 citizens of Indian origin, the remnants of a 2,000 strong Indian community that existed in the country before the civil war. The number of Indian expatriates has grown as government and private enterprises have hired teachers, bankers and technical experts. Mozambique After the arrival of the Portuguese colonialists, Goans from the Portuguese territory in India were sent to Mozambique to work as petty officials and soldiers. Indians in Mozambique faced a difficult period after Portugal lost its Indian possessions in 1961. They were persecuted and their properties seized by the Salazar regime. Indians regained their position after Mozambique became independent in 1975. There are about 20,000 Indians in Mozambique who have retained their distinct identity despite the troubles they went through. Indians arrived in Madagascar in small sailing boats from the Saurashtra coast; others reached the island from Zanzibar. They were mostly traders from Gujarat. Nigeria The Sindhi traders who arrived in the country prospered and made inroads in the manufacturing sector and now have a presence in textiles, pharmaceuticals and engineering. The Nigerian government itself and the country’s private sector are large recruiters of Indian doctors, teachers, engineers, IT and oil experts. There are 8,000 Nigerian citizens of Indian origin and about 17,000 Indian expatriates working in Nigeria. Seychelles The island nation of Seychelles has second-and third-generation people of Indian origin. There has been some inter-

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A F R I C A marriage between Indians and the indigenous people. About 6 percent the of Seychelles population of about 81,000 is of Indian origin. Seychelles business magnates have been hiring Indian staff and workmen for construction activities, in hotels, banks and health services. Zambia Indians who reached Zambia were traders, but they had to take up petty jobs till gradually they could set up as traders. There are about 10,000 Zambians of Indian origin. The Africanisation Campaign As the African colonies gained independence there was a natural move towards Africanisation, of reversing the discrimination of the colonial era. Indians who dominated the retail and distribution networks now faced an uncertain future as native Africans demanded more economic opportunities for themselves. Many Indians living in Kenya and Uganda were forced to leave after independence. Trading licences coming up for renewal were transferred to Africans. In Uganda, the dictator, Idi Amin, ordered the expulsion of all Asians from Uganda in August 1972. All Asian businesses and properties were confiscated and individuals were allowed to take just £50 per head out of the country. About 80,000 Asians fled Uganda to Britain, Canada, Australia, and U.S. in three months. However, the Indians who had acquired Kenyan citizenship made efforts to overcome the challenge posed by ‘Africanisation’. They diversified into small retail trade and other business enterprises, besides moving into the professions. There are about 100,000 people of Indian origin still living in Kenya and they constitute an important segment of the country’s economy. In 1992, Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni urged Indians to return to Uganda and become part of the country’s economic life. Changes were made in the law to allow the confiscated property to be returned to the Indian owners. Many of those who left in 1972 had settled in different countries and prospered there, but some Indians did return to take possession of their property and factories. Even as Indians left Kenya and Uganda, many Indians moved into Nigeria and Ghana, swelling the few hundredsstrong Indian community at the time of independence to a few thousands. There was a fresh flow of Indians in the late 1970s to African countries for there was a shortage of trained personnel. Today in Tanzania, there are about 80,000 Indians. Active Participants Indians have been actively involved in the social, political, and economic life of their host societies; they have contributed handsomely to welfare programmes and educational institutions. They have been active participants in the politics of their adopted countries, many of them playing significant roles in African nationalist movements in the former British East African territories of Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania. In South Africa, Indians took part in the struggle against apartheid while

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Indian political organisations supported the African National Congress. They were part of the National Congress of the People that drafted the Freedom Charter in 1955 voicing the demands and aspirations of the peoples of South Africa. Indian leaders such as Yusuf Dadoo, Dr. Monty Naicker and others became part of the struggle against apartheid. In 1994, Jay Naidoo of the Congress of South African Trades Unions became a member of the cabinet when the first multi-racial government was formed in South Africa. Indians were active in the trade union movement and the veteran Malkhan Singh led the first general strike in Nairobi in 1950. He was to be arrested and deported. Zambia, with a population of 10,000 persons of Indian origin, has had four members of Parliament of Indian origin and three of them have held ministerial positions in the government. The economic success of the Indian community in Africa flowed from their ability to work hard, their frugal needs and a determination to ensure the economic well-being of their younger generation. Indians in Africa have adhered to their cultural moorings — retaining the customs, rituals and family values that their ancestors brought with them when they left Indian shores. In South Africa, the majority in the Indian community can speak at least one Indian language. Tamil is the most popular Indian language while about a third of the people of Indian origin can speak Hindi. Indian films and music are hot favourites with the Indian diaspora. They are regularly screened in the cinema halls and are easily available on DVDs. Local radio stations in Mauritius and South Africa relay programmes in Indian languages and play Indian film songs. The Indian diaspora has consistently sought to retain its cultural identity. Indian migrants have largely preserved a social and cultural milieu similar to the one back “home” and have held on to their customs and rituals, work ethic, values and cuisine, even as they strike roots in their new homeland. Over time, these cultural traits have been leavened with new customs and habits around them, but were never entirely lost. There is an Indian Association and an Indian Social Centre in Accra, Ghana, as well as a temple. Diwali, the festival of lights, is celebrated at several community functions in South Africa but a big carnival is held on the beach front in Durban, the place where the first Indians landed in 1860. Hosted by the Indian community, the celebration with Indian food stalls and firework displays draws a large multiracial crowd. Diwali and Navaratri are celebrated in most places where there is a sizeable Indian community. The Indian community in Botswana have built two Hindu temples in Gaborone and Selebi Phikwe, as well as a gurdwara and a mosque in the capital city. In the past couple of decades, there has been a resurgence of interest in Indian heritage in Reunion Island. There is a revival of Hinduism among the Indians and many of the old customs are being observed once again. Several temples have been constructed and there is a trend to mix Catholic customs and rituals with Hindu rites. The revival of Indian customs has been generated partly by the better communications and travel facilities between India and Africa. For the Indian-Africans, the Indian heritage may be a source of pride, but it is Africa that they call home. ■

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‘Get ready for new African LEADERS’

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angari Muta Maathai, the iconic Kenyan environmentalist –– who became the first African woman to win the Nobel Prize for Peace in 2004 –– speaks in simple, direct sentences that brim with an inner fire and conviction that comes from long years of struggle. The results are there for all to see: The Green Belt Movement she founded in the mid-1970s has enriched the earth with 31 million trees. Maathai is an elected member of the Kenyan Parliament and also served as Assistant Minister for Environment and Natural Resources between January 2003 and November 2005. A pioneering academic and a leading human rights campaigner, she became “a source of inspiration for everyone in Africa fighting for sustainable development, democracy and peace”, in the words of the Nobel Committee that recognised her outstanding work three years back. In 2007, India honoured the 67year-old environmentalist with the prestigious Jawaharlal Nehru Award for International Understanding. The award was presented to Maathai by then President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam at an elegant ceremony at Rashtrapati Bhavan in March that was attended by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and senior Cabinet ministers. “Her mission has to spread to all parts of the planet. The award is in recognition of her persistent and courageous struggle for democracy, human rights and environmental conservation,” President Kalam said. In this conversation with Manish Chand, Maathai speaks about her unquenchable passion for a clean environment, the emerging breed of new leaders in Africa, her impression of India and what India and Africa can do together to create a more equitable, clean and harmonious world. Excerpts from the interview:

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Q. Your passion for the environment and your lifelong commitment to the green cause has earned accolades from all over the world. How did it all start? A. I grew up in the Kenyan countryside. That experience in the countryside when the environment was pristine has stayed with me since then. In those days, there were no cash crops, no coffee, no tea. I grew up seeing shorgum, palm trees, sweet potatoes –– which were all very economical food crops. The rivers were so clean that we could drink water straight from them. There were no agro-chemicals. That’s the background I knew as a child and that’s what influenced me a lot. Later on, I saw the land degrading. We could no longer drink water straight from the rivers. The rivers were full of silt because forests upstream were cleared. That’s the time I thought I must do something about it. If we really understand the role environment plays in our life and environmental education becomes part of school curricula, then a lot of people would be concerned about the environment and would encourage others to do something about it. Q. How do you see the impact of globalisation on the environment? A. To a very large extent, globalisation is a threat to the environment in countries that are poor and underdeveloped. Underdeveloped, poor countries are looking to developed countries and corporations to get them out of poverty. It’s very easy for these corporations to exploit the resources and not to share it with the poor locals. There should be a code of ethics to ensure that they do business on the basis of justice and fairplay. Unless you can appreciate that the planet is very small and resources limited, globalisation will do a lot of damage to poor and developing countries. Q. You have been in politics for long and have often criticised corruption in governance. What do you think of the quality of leadership in Africa? Do you see a new breed of leadership emerging in Africa? A. Now, we are seeing a new breed of leadership, especially since the collapse of the Soviet Union. A lot of wars fought in Africa were proxy wars that were waged by superpowers

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A F R I C A for influence over the continent. Unfortunately, Africans allowed themselves to fight wars which were not their wars. But today there is a new effort by the new African leadership to bring in more democratic and responsible governance in Africa and to protect the African people from the kind of tragedies which you have described. As a response to that, African leaders introduced a new organisation, the African Union (AU), instead of the old Organisation of African Unity. It’s an effort by Africans to look at themselves and the way they govern themselves and try to improve governance. I have been asked by the AU to join the Economic and Social Council (ECOSC) –– an advisory organ which primarily comprises civil society. It’s one of the indicators to me that a new African leadership is emerging because the African leadership in the past didn’t have anything to do with civil society. They regarded civil society as an enemy of the country. Which is part of the reason I was persecuted. That the African Heads of State are inviting civil society to be an advisory organ is an indication that there is a new willingness to embrace the African people and give them better leadership. Q. Some say Africa holds the key to UN reforms, especially the expansion of the U.N. Security Council. Do you think attempts to reform the U.N. will succeed? A. From the viewpoint of the U.N. reforms, they are looking at Africa as a bloc. And they are visualising two seats for Africa in an expanded Security Council. But the problem is that Africa has 53 countries and it is so fragmented. Africa has to work towards reducing this fragmentation because that’s been part of its weakness. Maybe for some it was easier to deal with a fragmented Africa. Now, the AU is aware of it and has been holding discussions towards a more united Africa. And that’s a positive sign. A united Africa would have a much stronger voice in the U.N. than a fragmented Africa.

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tinue to live in poverty in India. The government is trying to raise the quality of living of people. How do you do it? Sometimes, the government’s choice is very difficult. It’s very important for the governments to open up to civil society and to dialogue with citizens. But then that usually is the problem. The governments don’t want to consult their citizens and engage in dialogue with them. And that can be very frustrating to civil society organisations that are trying to protect the environment. When there is a dialogue, the governments can explain themselves to the people and the tension is reduced. I have been in government, so I know sometimes the government has to make very painful choices. But it’s also a responsibility of civil society organisations to continue egging their governments to be responsible and make choices that do not jeopardise the livelihood of people.

Q. This is your first visit to India. What are your impressions of this country and its people? A. It’s an extraordinary country. I have come as a guest of the state; so I have received extraordinary Governments don’t want to hospitality. I have seen the wonderful leadership of India which I hold consult their citizens and in very high esteem. A country that engage in dialogue with them. has good leadership moves forward. And that can be very frustrating India, from the very beginning, from to civil society organisations that the time of Mahatma Gandhi to Nehru to Indira Gandhi and now the are trying to protect the current leadership, has been very environment. When there is a lucky in the kind of leadership it has dialogue, the governments can had. The leadership that has been responsible to people –– the kind of explain themselves to the leadership Africa can only hope for. people and tension is reduced. Also, talking of impressions, I have been very impressed by Delhi. I have I have been in government, never seen a city that is so green. The so I know sometimes the streets are wide and lined with trees. government has to make very I would like to appeal to all cities to emulate Delhi. It’s very beautiful. painful choices. But it’s also a

responsibility of civil society organisations to continue egging their governments to be responsible.

Q. How do you see the controversy in India over Special Economic Zones? You also have an environment versus development debate in Africa… A. We do have some of these special economic areas. They appear to be good ideas as they create employment. However, some people complain that they exploit people and pay very little to them. The governments have to make a choice. Good and responsible governments will make a choice, which is good for the common good, which is good not just for the current government, but good in the long term. The governments are often confronted with the problems of poverty and unemployment. In India, for instance, we are quite impressed with the rate of development. But there are still millions who con-

Q. What kind of relationship do you envisage between a new India and a new Africa? A. Africa and India have been in a long-term relationship. Indian leaders like Gandhi and Nehru have been a source of inspiration to Africa. India was ruled by the British and so were we. We were therefore very inspired by the struggle and success of India. There are other vital connections. Mahatma Gandhi started his campaign for justice in South Africa. There is a very strong linkage between the Indian government and the African Union. I can only hope we shall continue to act together and with the new leadership in Africa, we shall benefit from the experience of India. India is a very dynamic, democratic society. It’s also a very diverse society — so many religions, so many languages and so many cultures. This diversity could have sparked divisions in the society, but on the contrary this has only strengthened India.

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n traditional societies, folk culture is a reflection of daily life and is usually transmitted orally from one generation to another. Oral art forms are rich repositories of the cultural heritage of a society and the aesthetic and visual expressions of the community’s values and mores. Not only does it showcase traditions of the community, but also transmits knowledge, customs, norms and conventions of the society. The oral arts may include music, dance, visual arts or poetry. Generally, traditional art forms are rooted in mythology, legends and folklore, and are associated with gods, ancestors and heroes. But music and dance are the two oldest forms of modes of expression of human feelings. Music is an integral part of, and the dynamic force that has animated folk culture of all societies since time immemorial. Music has been imbued and infused in all the cultural elements of the community as it has always been a vehicle of transmission of knowledge, a source of entertainment and identity, an instrument of achieving social cohesion by providing a platform to relate with one and all and a via media between the visible and the invisible. Traditional societies,

especially African societies, express all forms of emotions through music where both the individual and the collective consciousness are represented and find expression. Their concept of music relates to their conception of the world as being fundamentally mobile yet uniquely real that seeks synthesis (Senghor, 1966:4). Traditional societies of Africa seek synthesis and a mutual dependence between the social and the physical universes. John Miller Chernoff (1979) says Africans rely on music to maintain the happiness and vitality of their social worlds. Music provides a focus for participation in social activities, helping people orient themselves to what they are doing together. Besides, in Africa, it helps people to work, to enjoy themselves, to censure a bad person or to praise a good one, to recite history, poetry, and proverbs, to celebrate a funeral or a festival, to compete with each other, to encounter their gods, to grow up, and, fundamentally, to be sociable in everything they do. African music songs deal with almost every kind of human activity and hence often express the character of ethnic and social groups. Music is often combined with speech, dance, and the visu-

Dancing

Black music is a social force — its purpose is to elevate or transform both audience and musician. It does not combine sounds to merely create melody, it is not music for music’s sake, for it celebrates life in all its ecstasy. And that is African culture and its metaphysical aesthetic, says Rashmi Kapoor

WITH THE GODS

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A F R I C A al arts to create multimedia performances (Waterman, 2005). It is important to realise that the very style and structure of music and dance is an inseparable part of the content, or meaning. Kalamu ya Salaam (2001) insists that more important is the way it is said and not what is said. This emphasis on process is not simply an emphasis on stylisation, but is rather a clear prioritising of the concrete, lived experienced. In this context, the whole self is celebrated, not just ideas, but body and soul, ideas and emotions. Important stages of an African person’s life are often marked with music. There are lullabies, children’s game songs, and music for adolescent initiation rites, weddings, title-taking ceremonies, funerals, and ceremonies for the ancestors (Waterman, 2005). Among the Yoruba of Nigeria, the mother of twins must perform a special repertoire of songs, and in Ghana there are songs for teasing bed-wetters and for celebrating the loss of a child’s first tooth (Salaam, 2001). Music is part of every African’s life from birth to death. Musical activities are ritualised and intended to link the visible world with the invisible. Dancing is often an important part of the ritual and spiritual aspect of music as throughout time

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man has expressed his feelings through movements. Therefore, music in African societies underlies all facets of human life and society and hence provides a unified expression of the whole cultural world-view. Their aim is simply to express life in all its aspects through the medium of sound (Bryant & Webber, 2000). The preponderance of music over other art forms is due to its effectiveness as a medium of communication. It can integrate space and time and so can appeal more powerfully to the senses of even the uninitiated to appreciate the spiritual and temporal alike without being ecclesiastical (Micro Music Laboratories). There is subtle supremacy of music over language. The primary function of human language is to convey information, but music has a dimension of the manifold structures of the musical sound-space, thereby corresponding to both, the system of the inner human, and outer human social relations (ibid). Music can communicate even to the simple listener at the level of his feeling and understanding simultaneously. Therefore, music is much more successful in bringing the flow of information to a level where our language would border on the grotesque (ibid).

“Traditional African music is symbolic, an expression and validation of psychic energy” –W. Komla Amoakua

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All sub-Saharan traditions emphasise singing, because the medium of sound (Micro Music Lab); not in a fashion that music is used as an instrument of communication. Since many imitates nature, but one that takes natural sounds and incorAfrican languages are “tone languages”, in which the pitch porates them into music. determines meaning, the melodies and rhythms of songs genTo those unaccustomed to hearing and understanding this erally follow the intonation, contour and rhythms of the song particular aesthetic perspective, the result may seem texts (Waterman, 2005). Tonality has been regarded as a cacophonous. Nevertheless, each sound has a particular meanprominent feature of African music. ing that renders emotions and desires as naturally and directInstrumentalists developed techniques to make their horns ly as possible (Bebey, 1975). sound like they were talking, singing, or laughing while simulOne particular aspect of the African aesthetic in music is the taneously singers developed techniques to make their voices use of music to achieve trance, or a state of altered conscioussound like instruments. In essence, that which was suppressed ness usually induced with the aid of dance. Salaam (2001) says reappears as a dominant characteristic (Salaam, 2001). that this quality, which goes by numerous names including African music is a language of the lived experience, a way “getting the spirit”, “spacing out”, and “being possessed”, is a to communicate to the world and with each other, their feel- desired effect and not an accidental byproduct of Black musiings and expressions (Salaam, 2001). To express dimensions cal production. In other words, the music is designed to alter of the human experience through movement and through the consciousness of the audience. Moreover, the audience is music are related in the most intricate symbiotic relationship never seen as a voyeur, who silently looks on, but as a particimaginable. In fact, the two art forms have been intertwined ipant, whose physical interaction with the musicians is necesever since the earliest man learned to beat two sticks together sary in order for the music to achieve its purpose of elevating, in a regular and repeated manner (Micro Music Lab). or transforming, both audience and musician. From this perAfrican languages have an inherent musicality as pitch acu- spective it is easy to understand Black music as a social force. ity and melodic differentials are combined with the rhythmic accents inherent in all languages. Words spoken for reasons of Music is Shared and Participatory communication take on a musical aesthetic; a conversation between two individuals easily develops the rhythmic pacing South African philosophy Professor, Augustine Shutte, and pattern of a quasi-musical performance. The blending of (1993: 46-7) says that the musical and social behaviour of African tonal language, eidetic knowledge, and music educa- Africans is reflected in the Xhosa saying and is echoed in many tion with rhythmic pitch value (associated with lyrics governed other African societies. The saying is ‘umuntu ungmuntu ngaby the tonal inflection of words) results in heightened musi- bantu’ which means that a person becomes person through cal sensibility. This vocally grounded process transfers readi- (association with) persons. The body is conceived as social ly to African instrumental music. The “talking” drums found body, and music provides a framework through which peoin Ghana, Nigeria, and other African countries provide clear ple can create and experience a product that is greater than the examples of such transference (Bebey 1975). sum of their individual contributions, and achieve through There has never been a separate notion of art from spiritu- collective discipline, even as personal freedom is achieved al celebration or social entertainment in Africa (Chernoff, through transcendence (Blacking, 1973). 1979). Music has always been a mixture of sacred and secular In some villages music is a communal activity in which ingredients. While one person may be enjoying music, dance, everyone participates (Bryant & Webber, 2000). In other viland colourful masks from an aesthetic perspective, another lages the musicians are strictly professionals, trained for their may become filled with the “holy spirit”, while a third might trade. Certain dances at religious ceremonies may only be perexperience the event purely as a celebration. formed by the priest or priestess of that community. On occaAfrican music is usually learned by listening rather than by sion everyone may participate. In other instances, participation reading the notes or words. The is restricted to particular social African music is a music is transmitted from person to groups who perform their own kind person, from place to place, and of music, led by specialist musicians. language of the lived from generation to generation. Since Such specialists may also perform experience... a way to a large portion of African music has on their own, either individually or communicate with each been transmitted from one generain small ensembles. For some tion to another orally, composers African peoples, there is a special other, their feelings and and performers of African music caste of musicians who serve as hisexpressions. To express have evolved in a fashion that places torians, having memorised vast dimensions of human much less emphasis upon written repertories of songs and narratives traditions than European “art music” experience through music commemorating past events and composers (Micro Music Lab). and movement are related genealogies (Piskor, 2004 ). Even in Traditional African musicians do societies with well-developed tradiin the most symbiotic not just play in a manner pleasing to tions of professional musicianship, the ear. The aim of African musithe ability of all individuals to parrelationship imaginable. cians has been to express life through ticipate in a musical event by adding

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A F R I C A a voice to the chorus or by adding an appropriate clap pattern is assumed to be part of normal cultural competence (ibid). All the activities of daily life are often accompanied by music, song and rhythm. Every day there may be a special event in which music and dance is the central activity. Almost everyone present will be actively involved in several different ways at once, playing instruments, dancing, singing, hand-clapping, observing, commenting, being commented upon (Bryant & Webber, 2000). In the collective movement, the individual getting in tune with the group is a significant characteristic; and, of course, the use of poly-rhythms and poly-phonics allows the individual to make a unique contribution to the collective, thereby achieving both unity and individuality (Landeck 1969). Indeed, African music is the most democratic art form in that it stresses both the collective and the individual at the same time. African History and Overview (2004) explains that since all members of the community participate in music making, all Africans are musicians in the broadest sense. Music other than that of professional musicians and teachers is learned primarily through social experience and communal participation. Many semi-professional musicians earn a living through a portion of the year and rely on other occupations for the remainder of the year. Many harp and lute players in other areas of Africa are also soothsayers or healers. Hocketting to coordinate their machete blows are heard while clearing dense brush for rice fields. In pygmy societies of the central rain forest, singing and vocal cries are used to coordinate the movements of hunters through the brush. In southern Africa, herders use flutes and other instruments to help control the movement of cattle. African forms of making music are not an end in themselves, but a means to achieve social cohesion. Under the influence of music, participants are first brought to a state of unity via the rhythm. If one can’t sing, they at least pat their foot and keep time. While some may minimise or ignore this attribute, practically everybody moves (clapping or foot-patting) to a rhythm (Landeck, 1969). Music creates a cultural feeling of belonging and an opportunity to identify oneself as a part of larger social group and at the same time distinguish oneself as a particular individual within that group (Blacking, 1973). African musicians do not actively conceptualise the abstract principles of their music. However, it is apparent from the unhesitating participation of all members of the African community in musical performances that there are complex yet unverbalised principles underlying music making (Monro, NEB:242). The music patterns that are recreated are not important in themselves, but the meaning given to them in the specific context is. They use it only when they have mastered the conventions of their musical language which is combined with dance, ritual, drama, costume, sculpture and painting (Blacking, 1973). African traditions also greatly emphasise dance, for movement is regarded as an important mode of communication. Dance adds to the multidimensional effect of the presentation. For this purpose the dance utilises symbolic gestures, mime, props, masks, costumes, body painting, and other visual

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devices (Waterman, 2005). Music, traditional dance and drumming are perhaps the glue of cultural infrastructure. African drumming and dance in its essence communicates concepts of life on an elevated level (Waterman, 2005). Social Control of Music The content and the context of music in Africa often is a reflection of the concerns of the society. These could be suggestions, warnings, cautions or propositions. They are designed to affect those aspects of behaviour which could have never been verbalised or even referred to in public on other occasions. These institutionalised ways of social control use criticism, ridicule and admonition to correct the behaviour of the erring members (Piskor, 2004). Songs of social control are usually topical and appropriate to a given community. These songs of social control with their carefully worded texts often serve as a village newspaper expanding on important happenings in the daily life of the society (Akabot, 1986:43). For example, in the Benin Republic, there are ‘songs of allusion’ which are typical songs of current issues and gossip, often criticizing those in authority (Agordoh, 2005:29). Rights of women and their sub-ordination to men also find expression in the songs of Africa. Samuel Ekpe Akpabot in his book Foundation of Nigerian Music (1986:73-5), show that in Nigeria in certain ethnic groups the period of harvesting yams is a very special one. The Eibibio ethnic group of Nigeria has an all women society called the Ebre society which celebrates its annual festival during the new yam festivities. It is a moral and protest society that attempts to challenge male chauvinism. Their poetry seeks to establish the independence of women in society (ibid, 96). The motif of protest against male dominance is maintained. Here the song text reveals the idea of women’s liberation and demand for independence for Ibibio women from subjugation of their men. Songs used by the women of the Ebre society show that the idea of women’s liberation which became fashionable in their western world only fairly recently, had been in vogue in Nigeria for a very long time. One of the songs of Gambia is Banili, a women’s song, in which the song is a form of criticism of institution of arranged marriage where a man wants to marry a woman by buying her out with money or gold. The singer says that if women think there is no love in marriage she can reject him (Piskor, 2004). One can say publicly in songs what cannot be said to a man’s face and hence venting out the frustrations of day-to-day life. This is one of the ways in which the African society maintains a spiritually healthy community (Hugh Tracy, 1954:237). It is often seen that the professional women singers of Gambia, Jali Muso, address the issue of domestic violence publicly through the medium of songs (Piskor 2004:5). During the performances, the Jali Muso pretends to be raising the issue between them but actually addresses the people indulging in abuse and violence (Nema Kunku, 2000). Mali’s Wassoulou female musicians, such as Oumour Sangari is popular for singing about women’s issues and real problems. Some verses of the songs composed by Oumour Sangari speak of the

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subordination of women in marriage, out-casting women who cannot bear children, and injustice suffered by women forced to live in polygamous marriages. At her concerts, Sangare sings songs encouraging women to turn down forced marriages. “Songs’ texts can be used as a means of action directed towards a solution of a problem which plagues a community. While this can take the form of ridicule and shame or sanctioned legal action, it is also apparent that song texts provide psychological release for the participants” (Merriam, 1963:201). Thus singers draw attention to the current and recurring irregularities in the society. “Thus the songs and dances of Africa are of great importance in understanding the African’s attitude to life... Sly digs at the pompous; condemnation of those who neglect their duties; outcries against injustice as well as philosophy in the face of difficulties are all found in these songs” (Hugh Tracey, 1948). Music and Political System in Africa Music of courts and festivals in African society is the music relating to political organisations. In fact, one cannot talk of traditional political systems in Africa without referring to the music in the courts of African kings (Agordoh, 2005:36). Music is an integral part of the African political system and not an appendage or an add-on. The use of music ranges from supporting and celebrating leadership traditions to strengthening those struggling for independence movements in more recent times (Carole, 1999). The ceremonial music is sanctioned by the traditional and the ritual and this stands outside and above the daily round of song and dance. It is a powerful factor in the preservation of tribal loyalties and beliefs. Every Murozi, for example, would be deeply stirred by the sound of the royal drums of the paramount chief of Barotseland, which can be beaten by none but the royal drummers and then only to the prescribed rhythms (Hailey, 1957:68). Carol C. Lee (1999) insists that the South African antiapartheid movement of the 1970s and 1980s used music to challenge authority and foster solidarity. Emphasising the human voice and song in rallies, protest marches, and especially funerals of political activists and freedom fighters, the African National Congress saw art, including music, as an important weapon in their fight against the oppressive, segregationist policies of apartheid. Musicians, including Miriam Makeba and Mzwakhe Mbuli, used their lyrics to voice antiapartheid sentiments; concerts were staged to increase awareness and raise money for various humanitarian causes, and influential bands were formed within the penitentiary at Robben Island to sustain and encourage solidarity among political prisoners. Music also expressed resistance and unity at an international level through an anthem shared by several African countries and the African National Congress. There are ceremonies and rituals concerned with the installation of kings or the assumption of other political offices, all of which are performed with music for example when a chief dies in the Sukuma land of Tanzania, certain stages in the proceedings are marked by music, and for the new chief who succeeds a dead chief (ntemi) a different kind of music is per-

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formed at different stages of the ceremony. The institution of praise singing and the role of griots (praise singers) are vital in some societies. In Yorubaland in Nigeria, praise (Oriki) singers follow their lords or their masters in society (Agordoh, 2005:38). Similarly in Gambia, griots are members of the hereditary musician caste. They are also called Jali/Jali muso. Jal/Jali muso have been defined as musician and oral historian (Charry, 1992:54).The historical beginning of the jololu was linked with Mansa Sunjata Keita, the founder of the Mali empire. Their absence and presence with the Sunjata conveyed the sense of peace or comfort. When Sunjata departed in peacetime in the Mali empire, the jalolu would accompany him, dressed in fine robes and announcing to everybody that the king was leaving. In times of conflict, no jalolu would accompany the exiled Sunjata with a song due to the fear of being killed (Piskor, 2004:2). When Sunjata departed in peacetime in the Mali empire, the jalolu would accompany him, dressed in fine robes and announcing to everybody that the king was leaving. Similarly, the court musicians perform a ‘take’ — praise epithets of the Emires in Zaria or in exceptional cases for high officials. The Kakaki are played in an ensemble with cylindrical drums (Nzewi, 1985:68). According to Akapabot (1986), all musical instruments fulfil anthropological functions as well. In one Nigerian community, six lera flutes are played at the installation of a chief with the head chief of the community playing the lead flute himself. His expertise in playing flute is not important but his presence in the group is symbolic of authority rather than musical competence. The whole ceremony would be meaningless without this single musical gesture. Musical sound is equally important as music or musical instrument producing the sound. Among the Ibibios, the sound of twing gong (Akankan) played solo in a village tells the people that an official announcement is about to be made. When a Fulani Emir of Katsing in Nigeria is crowned, the tambari drum is struck 12 times to announce the event to the community (Akapabot, 1986:98). In Tanzania, when a chief dies, the Milango (a drum) is not struck but turned upside down symbolising movements of stress or grief. The drum, a symbol of life, must remain silent but visible in death (ibid). Among the Yoruba of Nigeria, an incompetent or evil king often first heard the public’s command to abdicate from his “talking drummers”. When Ugandan government troops invaded the place of the Kabaka (king) of Buganda in the 1960s, they made sure that the royal musical instruments were destroyed first. In his memories, the Kabaka described the royal drums as the “heart” of the kingdom (Waterman, 2005). The royal musical instruments are symbolic of authority. In some societies every important chief or king has special music played for him on state occasions. Much of this music is provided by drums stored in the palace. It becomes the king’s moral obligation to see to it that these instruments are well protected. In many cases, many drums and drum ensembles of kings could not be owned or played without the permission of the king or can only be played at a time laid down by custom and tradition. If the king’s musical instrument is misused, it is believed that the dignity of the dances and language asso-

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A F R I C A ciated with it are lowered and the ranks of the kingship and its prestige reduced (Agordoh, 2005:38). A musical instrument which serves purely musical functions in one ethnic area could be found to be a sacred object or a mythical symbol, or a political symbol in other culture areas (Nzewi, 1986:66). The restrictions of particular drums to courts are still customary. Drums like other state regalia are marks of the rank of various chiefs. An inferior chief, such as a village headman (odikuro), could not keep a big state drum (twenekesee), though a chief with the title ohene or omanhene could do so (Nketia, 1963:120). Since state drums are state property, they were in the past regarded as war trophies. To capture a chief’s drum meant not only the acquisition of a treasured article, but also the humiliation of the chief (ibid., 121). Nketia (1963:123) explains that the drums and drum ensembles include signal drums and talking drums. The most common signal drums are the tribunal drums which play short repetitive pieces for summoning councillors to courts so that the community as a whole is informed of the business about to take place. Dua Koro, kantomanto, nkrawiri and mpebi drums are used for these purposes. In the past, a person found guilty of petty theft, such as stealing a fowl, was punished by marching him publicly with the object in his hands, followed by the music of special drums, aworoben or kwantempon drums which herald the approach of the adumfoo (executioner). Unlike signal drums, talking drums have more varied and sustained rhythms and so is the linguistic interpretations of these rhythms which may include greetings, praises, emergency calls or heraldry. The kings of Dahomey like the king Ashanti of old, required music at certain intervals of the day. The day began with music and ended with it (Nketia, 1963:125). Nkukuadwa talking drums were used in the past to awaken the chief in the morning or to intimate his absence when he was having his bath so that those coming to greet him might be informed. They also functioned as dinner drums, chiefly for the benefit of the many attendants at the court and all those who depended on the bounty of chief (ibid.,126). Thus the judicial and administrative structure of the state and its organisation for warfare or the performance of other important tasks also has a musical counterpart (Agordoh, 2005:38). Some societies in Africa have mythical symbols (totems) of office, which may include musical instruments among the Ankole of Uganda. This symbol is a sacred drum called bagyendanwa and there is a special cult built around it. The Lovedu of Transvaal in South Africa also have sacred drums: they are said to be four in number and the smallest of them is mystically linked with the life of the queen and the welfare of the state. Similarly, the mythical symbols of the Bambara

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ancestral pantheon are the ‘tabele’ drum and the ‘ngoni’ harp (Agordoh, 2005:38). Gilman (2001) shows how the institution of women’s political praise dancing and singing in Malawi has emerged where women act as conscious agents for political parties. Political parties in contemporary Malawi organise their female members to dance and sing songs of praise at their public functions. One of the characteristics of the political environment that produces women’s praise singing and dancing in Malawi is the unequal relationship between politicians and the people they lead, which can generally be characterised as patron-client. Politicians enact their roles as patrons at public functions by giving material gifts to women performers, giving them an incentive to join the party, dance in its service, and ultimately vote for its politicians. Music and Religion In Africa, music being a living part of the environment, is consistently used and manipulated by people. For this reason traditional African music is not normally described as contemplative rather it is thought to be functional. Consequently, the visual imagery of the popular African music captures not only the imagination of the creation, but also the social, political, religious and cultural realities of the times (Wheeler and Venetis, 2005). Though African music is functional but what is remarkable is that it is fundamentally religious. Africans see their music to be primarily religious because it is religious in their scheme of things. In fact, in traditional African culture, not only music but all life is based on religion (Jahn, 1968:157). Music in Africa is placed in such a context in relation to the whole environment that emphasises the importance of the relation between music, man and god. Man has an active attitude towards the gods. Through the invocation of sympathetic magic, he compels the divine power to unite him in ecstasy (Jahn, 1968:157). In most situations, the gods manifest themselves. They descend to the people through their human media and participate in the drama of worship. For this very reason Wim Haan (1999) while referring to the music of Africa said that it was like “dancing with the gods and not dancing for gods”. His explanation was that ‘in this respect music and religion are one: “after all, religion and life are one, and music and life are one”. Agordoh (2005) describes a Yeve culture which is a secret society of Eve Speaking peoples of West Africa. It is culture of god of thunder. It has elaborate musical repertoire and dancing is a very important activity of the culture. Sovu odavu, afovu and sogba dances are performed for heightened spiritual experience (Agordoh 2005:41-2). During the performance of adavu, in the first piece, the priest displays the ritual objects,

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the second piece heightens the excitement and by the time the third piece is played, the priest is ready to be possessed. They perform the dance in a state of ecstasy. All those present prostrate themselves and shout HO!HO!HO! Or clap their hands to hail the arrival of the divinities. African cultures do not think in divisions and oppositions. Human manifestations of gods in man and god are seen at the same time. Religious dance, Fisher says, has a social function particularly because the goal of religious dance is the systematic control of all good and evil forces. It is about the harmony of the spiritual and material world. Namibians also believe that in performance not only the individual becomes part of community but also part of the music, linking earth to heaven, past (via ancestors) and future (via children). Performance as ngoma implies that music/dance have a purpose and function larger than themselves (Mans, 2000). Songs are used as a means of stimulating the media of the gods to action and keeping them in a condition of ecstasy until the mission of the gods has been fulfilled. No sooner the physical sight of ecstasy noticed in a medium than a crowd of “kple” (religious culture of the Ga of Ghana) burst into a chant to urge on the transmission to welcome the descending spirit (Agordoh, 2005:41-2). Music in Africa enables participants to “speak with god”. In such a communication, words are inadequate and without power (Munro, NEB). When combined with performance and various instruments, music acquires the power to convey feeling or emotions rather than naked words. Finke (2000) describes the interesting belief of Taita ethnic groups of east Africans. They believe that music is a link between the past (ancestor) the present and the future. The ancestors are never completely gone. They still exist, out of their bodies. So long as we remember them. Hence, music is like an ancestor — a spiritual and temporal link to the past as well as the future — that must also not be forgotten. Taita play “pepo” music that combines both spirit possession and exorcism. Traditional religious beliefs or secret societies have controlled and regulated African societies. Each religious association in Africa has its own distinctive music (Nketia, 1963:90). This music may be for the great gods, minor gods, divinities or to appease lesser spirits of some popular cultures. The focal

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point of the life of these associations is always in the locality of the shrines around which the associations are built (ibid, 90). For the purposes of corporate worship the chief priest, his assistants and other officers who “translate the oracular outburst of the priest into intelligible language form the core or a central organisations” (ibid, 91). The services of the musicians are employed. Most worshippers and adherents take part in the singing with musicians. Music in religious association is provided by drums and voices. The songs are either in the style of chants or recitatives with chorus responses, or in the style of dance songs. These songs include praises of the shrines, proverbial songs, prayers and curses, as well as songs of exhilaration (Nketia, 1963:92). The singing of religious association may be accompanied by drumming though absolute drum music is also used. Different deities have different drums dedicated to their service. Drumming then is part and parcel of the institution of public worship by which links are established between the priest and spiritual beings, and between priests and devotees. It is also a phase of enjoyment and recreation for the association as a whole, who are thus united by participation in a common medium for expressing religious emotions, and for the larger community, the members of which are not debarred from enjoying the proceedings of worship (Nketia, 1963:102). Music and Death Death is the final event in life. It is regarded as the occasion when a deceased person sets out on a journey to the land of spirits to which his ancestors have already gone or to say that it is reintegration into the world of ancestral spirits (Art and Life in Africa Online). It is celebrated by the same important rites of passage that mark every significant transition in the life of an individual or a community in Africa. There are highly mystified funerary rites in most African societies which are generally held a few days after the death (Nzewi, 1986). The same basic sequence of events occurs, based on the deceased person’s status, age and rank. On the day of burial, several rituals are performed to ensure that all preparations are made for the departure of the deceased from the world of living (O’Sullivan, 1996).

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The funerary days are heralded in many ways — drumming, singing and dancing being the most common visual sights (Sarpong, 1974:31). The celebration of funerals involves whole communities, male and female alike, for the funeral is a great social occasion. It is celebration of the belief that the after-life strengthens the bonds between the living and the dead expressed through the rites and activities of the funeral, including the rendition of the dirge by individual women and also the performance of music by bands of musicians (Nketia, 1963:58). It is often said that death is one of the most certain methods by which the ancestral spirits reveal themselves to the living among the African people (Gumede 1990). On such occasions, the memory of the deceased may be preserved and the living may appeal to the spirit of the deceased to act as an intercessor with the spirits of nature to secure their blessings and benevolence. Davidson (1969) while referring to the dying master of the Fishing Spear of Dinka tribe of Sudan provides an interesting explanation of the reasons of celebration of funeral. He says that the dying master of the Fishing Spear is placed in a pit on an angareeb (a type of bedstead) while his joyful songs are sung. His people are joyful because they feel that their master will give them life, so that they shall live untroubled by an evil. The ritual burial is associated with social triumph over death and factors which bring death in Dinkaland. Behind social triumph is the resolution of loss, control of grief, and the fear of spirits. Death for society is, under normal circumstances, a temporary exclusion of the individual from human society (Sarpong, 1963:28). He is involved in a passage from the visible society of the living into the invisible society of the dead. Mourning is the necessary reaction of the living to the separation brought about by death, between them and the dead, and their participation in the mortuary state of their beloved ones lasts as long as this state itself (Hertz, 1909). Death as a social phenomenon consists of a dual, ambivalent process of mental and social disintegration and synthesis. It is when this mental and emotional and social process is complete that society’s peace is restored, and can claim victory over Invincible Death (Roman Chap. 15: Verse 55). The death of a person can be analysed as a combination of two processes. There is first separation from the loved ones.

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This phase is traumatic, full of grief, quiet and private as only the close family is involved (BBC World Music). This phase is followed by the funeral, a rite which includes preparation of the body for burial, the burial, and the official closing of the funeral rites. It’s a period of celebration and is communal. The whole celebration of the funeral is a public affair. It involves all the media of music like songs, dance, drumming and masquerades. Songs are dirges, chants and chorus in honour of the dead and his ancestors. The celebration is of death. Not of death per se, but how the dead person would bring happiness to the whole community. The first reason for celebration is that the dead will reintegrate with his ancestors. He will be able be able to help them as he will be in a position to do so. Celebration is also because the whole community has been able to overcome the loss of a member. Though among the Akans of Ghana, funerals are colourful and an occasion for celebration, it is not considered proper to have any drumming and allied activities on the first day of the death when sorrow and distraction are deepest (Nketia, 1963:59). The moment of parting brings home forcefully the meaning of the event of death. But the bereaved get over it and come to accept it as part of ordinary life. These are private moments and these proceedings are not for public but for the immediate family only (Sarpong, 1963:24). There are no ‘death drums’ to be sounded soon after, as one finds in Dahomeny or the drumming accompanying the rituals of libations (Herskovits, 1963) of the dead body. The funeral is also the venue which provides expression for social status and social hierarchy. In the case of a death of a king, religious leaders or other leaders, state drums play and focus on painful events of the past. In this the ntumpan talking drums are the most vociferous (Nketia, 1963:64). As principal talking drums, they reproduce the essential themes of the poetry of dirges, while heralding the occasion with message of condolences and messages of farewell to the deceased. In Igbo society the funeral ceremonies of eminent members of a community include dancing and recitation of the heroic qualities of the close associates of the dead man and the performance is known as “ekwe dike” (music for the brave) (Agordoh, 2005:81). In Ashantis of Akans Kete, music may be performed for the funeral of leading members of traditional

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associations and heads of traditional organisations. During the Iju festival performed at the death of a chief in Okitipupa, the ritual ceremony consists of a call to worship (where drums are used), incantation dances with a sword and a finale. The Ogboni and Egungum cults of Yorubas have masquerades like Ode, Alogbo, Sembe and Arebe, where singing and dancing include circus-like tricks (Akpabot, 1986:44). Special drum music may be played for the mourning of the wives of a dead king who generally undergoes severe “widow rites” (Nketia, 1963:64). They are supposed to take turns at dancing to this special music on the drums and to conclude the dance with the singing of a dirge. No state drum is silent on such occasions. On the other hand, in Tanzania, when a chief dies, the drum, Mlango is not struck but turned upside down. The symbolic use of a drum in Tanzania seems to suggest that in moments of stress or grief, the people prefer to “feel that the presence of a drum rather than ‘hearing’ it”. To them, the drum which is a symbol of life must remain silent but visible in death. Dancing is not considered inappropriate in situations of mourning. On the contrary, Akans like other African people like “to dance their sorrows away” and to express in bodily movements and gestures the feelings embodied in songs, dirges and other events of the funeral. This is to appear unswayed by the ravages of death, so that “death may be chased away” (Nketia, 1963:65). Drumming is considered more as a social expression. It provides an outlet for emotion, or is a means of expressing sympathy and goodwill to the living, or is a means of making a commentary on the event of death. Since the funeral is a celebration in honour of the deceased, the groups performing are those the deceased belonged to. In Anlo Ewe there is a proverb which says “you join a dance group for the day you die” (O’Sullivan, 1996). The strength that the reunion and the music pass on to the participants of

a funeral nurtures the community as a whole. Conclusion African music has emerged as a most distinct of music genres. Music and dance have been an integral part of an African’s life and an expression of their feelings and emotions. Africans have an innate trait in enjoying sounds. Hence, the African concept of music is different from the Western one. They do not combine sounds to create melody but express life through the medium of sound, not by imitating it but by incorporating the natural sounds. They do not make music for music sake only but to celebrate life in all its aspects with sounds and vigorous movements. Dance and music become an organic expression of African culture as it underscores the whole life from birth to death. All life cycle rituals, festivals and religious ceremonies, daily work, recreation or admonition - all find vibrant expressions through music and dance. Another distinctive feature of music and dance is that it is essentially collective. It provides a platform for articulating group activities, necessary for group integration. Since it involves cooperation, participation and co-construction, it is intentional activity. All participate and improvise to make it polyrhythmic. As Tracy (1986) says “one rhythm defines the other, one person defines another despite the opposition of co-operation and conflict, dependence and independence, communality and individuality. It helps to articulate identity, integrate with the group and at the same time assert oneself.” African music has always been mixture of then sacred and the secular, yet the primary function of music is communication with god. Music and religion are believed to be one and while appeasing gods it is not dancing for gods but dancing with gods. Words for Africans are inadequate but music has the power to convey feelings more intensely and aesthetically.

Notes and References ‘African Music’, 2007, Encyclopaedia article, in MSN Encarta. Agordoh, A.A., “African Music: Tradition and Contemporary”, New York, Nova Science Publishers, 2005. Akpabot, S.E., “Foundation of Nigerian Traditional Music”, UK, Spectrum Books Limited, 1986. Amoakua, W.K., “Traditional African Music is Symbolic, Expression and Validation of Psychic”, http://www.rootsworld.com/rw/villagepulse/outpost.html Appiah, Kwame, “Old Gods, New Worlds: Some Recent Work in the Philosophy of African Traditional Religion”, in G. Floistad; Dordrecht (Ed)., Contemporary Philosophy: A New Survey, African Philosophy, Vol. 5, 1987. Asante, Molefi Kete, Kariamu Welsh Asante, “African Culture: The Rhythms of Unity”, New Jersey, Africa World Press, 1990. Batzel, V., “Dance and the Classical Tradition: Dance is Music Made Visible”, 2001. Bebey, F., “African Music: A People’s Art”, Westport, CT, Lawrence Hill, 1980.

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Berliner, P., “The Soul of Mbira: Music and Traditions of the Shona People of Zimbabwe”. Chicago, The University of Chicago Press, 1993. Blacking, J., “How Musical Is Man?”, Seattle, University of Washington Press, 1973. Borthwick & Moy, “Popular Music Genres”, Edinburgh, University Press, 2004. Brackett, D., “Interpreting Popular Music”, Cambridge, NY: Cambridge University Press, 1995. Broughton, S. et.al., “World Music: The Rough Guide”, London, Rough Guides Ltd, 1994. Bryant, E. & Webber, L., “West African Dance: A Proud Tradition”, “In West African Rootholds in Dance”, 2000. http://www.duke.edu/~lrw/index.html. Carole, C.L., “The Reach of African Music”, In “Humanities”, Vol. 20 (6), 1999. Charry, E.S., “Musical Thought, History and Practice among the Mande of West Africa”, Princeton University (Ph. D. dissertation), 1992.

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A F R I C A Chernoff. J.M., “African Rhythm and African Sensibility: Aesthetics and Social Action in African Musical Idioms”, Chicago, The University of Chicago Press, 1979. Christo van Rensburg, “African Music in Social Context”, www.acslink.aone.net.au/christo/african.htm Dalcrose, E.J., “Rhythm, Music and Education”, New York, The Knickerbocker Press, 1921. Davidson, B., “The Africans”, London, Longman, 1969. Finke, J., “Fascinating Rhythms”, in Rough News issue 9, Rough Guide, Kenya kenya bluegecko.org. Finke’s, J., “Music Like wan Ancestor”, Traditional Music and Cultures of Kenya, kenya bluegecko.org, 2000. Finke’s, J., “In Remembrance of Pepo and the Ancestors”, Traditional Music and Cultures of Kenya, kenya bluegecko.org, 2000. Floyd, S., “The Power of Black Music”, New York, Oxford University Press, 1995. Gilman, I, “Purchasing a Praise: Women Dancing and Patronage in Malawi Political Politics”, In “Africa Today”, Vol. 48(4), Pp 43-64, 2001. Graeme Ewens, “Africa O-Ye!: A Celebration of African Music”, Guinness, Enfield, 1991. Gumede, M.V., “Traditional Healers: A Medical Practitioner’s Perspective”, Cape Town, Johannesburg, Skotaville Publishers, 1990. Gyekye, K., “The Unexamined Life: Philosophy and the African Experience”, Accra, Ghana Universities Press, 1988. Gyekye, K., “African Cultural Values: An Introduction”, Philadelphia/Accra, Sankofa Publishing Company, 1996. Haan, W., “A University Without Music is a Dead Place”, In “de Marge”, Jrg.8., No. 3, Pp 21-26, 1999. Herkovits, M.J., “Dahomey”, Vol. 1 Hertz, R., “Death and the Right Hand”, 1909. Huet, M., “Claude Savary: Africa Dances”, London, Thames and Hudson, 1995. Ihekweazu, E., (ed.) “Readings in African Humanities: Traditional and Modern Culture”, Nigeria, Fourth Dimension Publishers. Jahn, J., In “Louisiana Folklife Festival booklet”, “Neo-African Literature: A History of Black Writing”, New York, Groove Press Inc, 1968. Kalamu, ya Salaam, “Clapping On Two and Four”. Kennedy, L., “Music, Social Justice and Market Manipulations: An Interview with Professor Tricia Rose”, By Lauren Kennedy, Staff Writer, Fish Rap Newspaper, UC Santa Cruz. Revised and amended by Tricia Rose Copyright © 2006 Tricia Rose, 2006. Kofi, A. “Representing African Music”, in “Critical Inquiry 18”, Pp 245-46, 1992. Koskoff, E., “Women and Music in Cross-Cultural Perspective”, Chicago, University of Chicago Press, 1989. Kunda, J., “Jali Griots of West Africa and Beyond”, New York, Ellipsis Arts, 1996. Kunku, N., in Piskor, M. “The Importance of Being A Jali Muso” in “Ntama Journal of African Music and Popular Culture”, 2004. Lord Hailey, “An African Survey”, London/New York, Oxford University Press, 1957.

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Landeck, B., “Echoes of Africa”, New York, David Mckay Company, 1969. Mans, M., “Using Namibian Music/Dance Traditions as a Basis for Reforming Arts Education”, “International Journal of Education & the Arts”, Vol. 1 (3), 2000. Marriam, A.P., “The Anthropology of Music”, Evanston, North-Western University Press, 1964. Micro Music Laboratories, “Ethnic Music the Dimension of Creative Unfoldment”, Fundamental Research, 2001. Monro, T., “The New Encyclopedia Britannica, Macropaedia”, Benton, William, (ed)., Chicago, Encyclopedia. Nettle, B., “Folk and Traditional Music of the Western Continents”, Englewood Cliffs, Prentice-Hall, 1965. Nketia, J.H., “Kwabena: The Music of Africa”, London, Victor Gollancz, 1974. Nketia, J.H., “Drumming in Akan Communities of Ghana”, Ghana, University of Ghana, 1963. Nzewi, M., “Features of Musical Practice in Nigeria’s SocioCultural Context”, 1985. Phillipson, J., “The Music of Kung Bushmen of the Kalahari Desert”, Africa, New York, Folkways Records and Service, 1962. O’Sullivan, K., “Music at Anlo-Ewe Funerals” at http://www.dancedrummer.com/funerals.html, 1996. Piskor, M., “The Importance of Being A Jali Muso”, in “Ntama Journal of African Music and Popular Culture”, 2004. Pleasants, H., “The Agony of Modern Music”, New York, Simon and Schuster, 1955. Rinsburg, C.V., “African Music in Social Context”, http://www.acslink.aone.net.au/christo/african, Roman Chapter 15, Verse 55. Salaam, K., “Clapping on Two and Four”, in “Louisiana Folk Life Festival Booklet”, 2000. Salzman, E. 1988. “Twentieth Century Music”, Englewood Cliffs, Prentice Hall. Sarpong, P., “Ghana in Retrospect: Some Aspects of Ghanian Culture”, Ghana, Ghana Publishing Corporation, 1974. Schalkwyk, G.J.V., “Music as a Metaphor for Thesis Writing” in “The Qualitative Report”, Vol. 7 (2), 2002. Senghor, Leopold, “Negritude and African socialism”, in “St. Anthony’s Papers”, No. 15. Edited by K. Kirkwood, London, Oxford University Press, Pp 16-22, 1963. Senghor, Leopold, “Negritude” in “Optima”, Vol.16 (8), 1966. Shalita, S., “Africa’s Great Enemies: Passivity, Complacency”, The East African, 1998. Shutte, A., “Philosophy for Africa”, Rodenbosch, University of Cape Town Press, 1993. “The Effects of Rebellion on Contemporary Music” in Music Research Paper, http://www.freeonlineresearchpapers.com/ Tracy, A. “Some Thoughts on African Musical Qualities”, South Africa, Rhodes University, 1948. Tracy, A., “African Music — Codification and Textbook Project”, South Africa, Roodeport, 1954. Tucker, A.N., “Tribal Music and Dancing in Southern Sudan at Social and Ceremonial Gatherings”, London, William Reeves. Waterman, C., “African Music”, Microsoft Encarta Online Encyclopedia, 2005.

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BOLLYWOOD casts its spell Bollywood is the ultimate gossamer of emotion and longing in distant Africa. An institution in itself, particularly in South Africa, its actors and musicians are icons from the banks of the Nile to the Cape of Good Hope, says FAKIR HASSEN

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gyptian boatmen on the Nile burst out in song for Indian travellers; in battletorn Somalia people still flock to watch the latest Bollywood hits in ramshackle cinemas; and in South Africa, thousands of teenagers and young adults gyrate to the beat of Bollywood tunes in clubs every weekend. The technological advances of recent years, in particular the advent of DVD, has hugely expanded the market for Bollywood films, although producers and distributors bemoan the loss of revenue — courtesy cheaper technologies that also allow for rampant piracy. But Africa’s love affair with Indian

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cinema goes back a long way, and can be divided into two distinct categories — the pioneering Indian businessmen of South and East Africa who set up the first cinemas to show Indian movies as far back as the thirties; and local communities, black, white and Arab, across the continent, who could relate to the values of Indian culture as portrayed in these films. In the coastal city of Durban, where the first indentured sugarcane farm workers arrived in 1860 from India, closely followed by a merchant class who paid their way, cinemas with such eastern names as Raj, Isfahan and Shah Jehan, and especially those of the Moosa family’s Avalon Group, which established the first such cinemas in Durban more than six decades ago, would see fans of Hindi and Tamil films queueing up for up to four shows a day. In Johannesburg, however, the cinema names were more western, such as Majestic, Lyric and Planet. This thriving market for Indian movies continued till the seventies, when the advent of the video sounded the death knell for the cinemas. The Indian ban on supplying apartheid South Africa with any Indian products also played a role, although ingenuous methods were often employed to import films through third parties. As India continued to support the international sanctions regime on South Africa — in its quest to help bring democracy to the country — pirates had a field day. Videotapes of the latest titles, albeit of poor quality, were freely available for as little as two rands. Not surprisingly, many cinemas soon began shutting shop. Struggling to survive, owners chose to convert many of the once bustling places into shopping centres. The few cinemas that remained largely showed Western movies. However, more than a decade later, a Johannesburg businessman, Robbie Lachman, a keen Bollywood fan, decided to screen Bollywood titles at his Goodhope Cinema “purely for the love of it, since it won’t really make money”, as he said at the time. About a dozen patrons pitched in for the first screening of 1942 - A Love Story, before news spread by word of mouth. Fans began flocking to the shows at weekends, usually in the evenings when the more lucrative English screenings for black audiences would have ended. Lachman had made an impact. Within months, the country’s largest cinema group, Ster-Kinekor, who had never shown an Indian film before, chose to step in. Securing the Shah Rukh Khan hit Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, the group made

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such a profit with the film that it soon launched a Bollywood circuit which ran with great success for a few years until its largest competitor, Numetro, also decided to enter the fray. Until its flagship Johannesburg cinema was shut earlier this year, as its lease had expired, up to five Indian movies were being screened daily at the Village Walk Cinema.

resonate strongly with South African audiences, particularly among those sections of the community who share similar cultural values. Interestingly, the white Afrikaaner community can be seen in large numbers at Bollywood screenings these days. At one show in Sandton during the opening weekend of the film Saawariyan last year, there were only a handful of Indians Growth Areas among a predominantly white audience. Although some niche media, focusing on the Indian community in South Africa, With Indian film distributors and suppliers beginning to covers Bollywood extensively, Rao is also passionate about make huge demands on the two cinema chains, consolidation getting the local mainstream media to sit up and take notice efforts began in earnest in recent months. At the time of of Bollywood. writing, an agreement was being finalised to synergise “Some of the challenges faced locally include resistance distribution between the two companies and help secure a from the ‘traditional’ media to cover this segment for want of larger footprint in South Africa. adequate reference and knowledge about the content and the “Our key focus in respect of distributing Indian film content talent or stars involved. For example, there is no logical reason in South Africa is to secure good why a Shah Rukh Khan or a Hrithik content on a sustainable basis. Content Roshan shouldn’t make the cover of The typically vibrant will include Hindi as well as Tamil, Men’s Health magazine in South Africa Indian music will Telugu and other Indian-language or Rani Mukherjee, the cover of Fair films,” said Isobel Rao, chief executive, resonate strongly with Lady. Our aim is to raise the awareness Ster-Kinekor Distribution. of the content and the talent, to ensure South African “We want to nurture the demand publicity and marketing activities that audiences, particularly are on a par with that of any other films and passion for Indian film content in new, ‘non-core’ markets — principally among those sections of released in the territory.” with Afrikaans-language, African and Rao said suppliers of the content the community who art cinema markets, besides raising the from India have always viewed South share similar cultural frequency and attendance of the ‘core’ Africa as an important market and now Indian market, including younger values. Interestingly, the seem to be more willing to share risks audiences.” and unlock the region’s potential for white Afrikaaner Rao also wants to break through the growth. “We appreciate that it takes community can be seen time to break down barriers, nurture barrier of stereotypical perceptions about Indian cinema — of being new audiences, and draw in existing in large numbers at longish, with too many song and dance to the shows more Bollywood screenings audiences sequences, and a decided resistance to frequently. But we have a long-term these days. English sub-titles. commitment and passion to do so and “If Asian films such as Crouching we are looking forward to those Tiger and Hidden Dragon can find challenges.” audiences successfully, whilst having the same challenges of length and Piracy Threat subtitling, there is no reason to believe why Indian film content cannot One of the biggest challenges facing achieve the same level of success.” the growth of Indian cinema in South Films with a ‘cross-over’ appeal Africa, as indeed across the continent from acclaimed directors, Deepa and the world, is piracy. The Mehta and Gurinder Chadha, and contraband DVDs/CDs, usually more ‘traditional’ Indian film titles, manufactured in Pakistan and such as Swades and Lagaan, have all Malaysia, and bearing the latest titles successfully played on the art cinema are available sometimes within hours of circuit. their release in theatres. Trade pundits say the trend will While there are laws to counter continue to grow should this content piracy, authorities usually accord little be released on a more consistent basis or no priority to their implementation. on the cinema circuit. Navdeep Suri, Indian ConsulRao said the soap-opera-style General in Johannesburg, said they storytelling, Indian family values, and have made this concern known to the typically vibrant Indian music will authorities, although Indian cinema has

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grown in strength despite piracy: “While authorities are quite diligent in implementing intellectual property rights when its comes to software products such as those of Microsoft or the other giants, we see a certain paucity and laxity when it comes to enforcing the same intellectual property rights with regard to Indian cinema. It not only robs artistes of their rightful income, but also denies South Africa the revenue that would otherwise accrue to it.” Someone who is at the forefront of the battle to fight piracy and provide only legal and original DVDs and CDs is Ekbal Omarjee. Of Indian origin, Omarjee started Global Bollywood Music, South Africa’s largest company dealing in these products, a few years ago, after initially having been a pirate himself, by his own admission. Today Omarjee’s flagship store in the suburb of Fordsburg in Johannesburg boasts a repertoire of Indian music that even dealers in India on occasion source from him. “We supply to almost every country in Southern Africa, and we see how music in Bollywood films impacts the sales of CDs and vice versa. Good music pushes the later release of the DVD, while theatrical releases with good music invariably boosts CD sales as well.” Into Africa Having had postings in North, East and South Africa — besides dealings with West Africa in another capacity — Suri had some interesting tales to tell about the popularity of Indian films in every corner of Africa. “I was stationed in Egypt in the mid-80s when they were showing the Amitabh Bachchan film

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Mard. Such was its popularity that it aroused concern in the Egyptian film industry and prompted them to pass an extraordinary decree that no Indian film could run for more than four weeks continuously. The importer of the Indian film was also obliged to export an Egyptian film to India.” Somewhat ironically, Bollywood actress Celina Jaitley was a few months ago selected as Egyptian Tourism’s brand ambassador to lure more Indians to the country. Suri recalled how on a visit to Lake Nasser, a boatman, on learning that he was from India, burst into a song from the Raj Kapoor film Sangam. During a posting in Tanzania in East Africa, Suri found that a cinema with the most popular name in Southern and East Africa, Avalon, also existed there. “During the three years that I was there, the Avalon showed only one non-Hindi film, and that was Titanic, which many saw as being similar to an Indian film anyway because of its duration and music. But it was quite amazing to see how locals as well as Indians would flock to this cinema, which was then in tatters, but I believe this has since improved and there is now a spanking new multiplex which also screens the latest Bollywood releases. “The other interesting thing for me was that just as one generation in Egypt idolised Raj Kapoor and another Amitabh Bachchan, in Tanzania it was Mithun Chakraborthy. His Disco Dancer was a runaway hit and it would amaze me to find how many people had seen that movie over there and could actually shake a leg and mimic some of his famous dance steps.” A few years later, Suri would visit the Francophone countries in West Africa, where he expected to see a lot less interest in Bollywood than in Central Asia or the

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A F R I C A Commonwealth countries. “But on my visit to Senegal, I learnt that every Sunday afternoon at 2 pm, there was an Indian film showing with French subtitles. There was also an all-black Senegalese group that could belt out Hindi songs that they had learnt entirely from movies and television.” In neighbouring Mali, Suri learnt that even the First Lady at the time loved Indian cinema, prompting him to suggest to acclaimed Indian-born director Shekhar Kapur that the next Indian Film Festival be held in Timbuktu. “I said to him that you’ve been doing it in Venice and London and everywhere else, but if you really want to make

Realising the power that the Bollywood brand can have worldwide, veteran actor Anil Kapoor was even made brand ambassador for South Africa, with President Thabo Mbeki anointing him to this position at no less august a gathering than the opening of Parliament two years ago. Screenings of Bollywood films by the South African Broadcasting Corporation have also helped bolster interest in Bollywood among all communities.

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a statement about the universal presence of Bollywood, than Timbuktu is the place to do it.” With his present posting in South Africa, Suri has seen the impact that Bollywood has had on the locals from the increasing number of Bollywood films being shot here to all-black dance groups from Soweto and other predominantly black areas that regularly feature on programmes with Bollywood items. Live Bollywood shows and performances by playback singers are just as popular in South Africa as they are with the rest of the diaspora, although they are few and far between because the audience numbers often do not justify the huge costs of some of these shows. However, within the next few months, South Africans can expect to see live stage shows by popular singer Sonu Nigam, while one with Himesh Reshammiya is reportedly being finalised. There is also great excitement here about plans to bring the proposed world tour featuring the Bachchan trio, Amitabh, Abhishek and his wife Aishwarya to South Africa as well. Realising the power that the Bollywood brand can have worldwide, veteran actor Anil Kapoor was even made brand ambassador for South Africa, with President Thabo Mbeki anointing him to this position at no less august a gathering than the opening of Parliament two years ago. Screenings of Bollywood films by the national public broadcaster, the South African Broadcasting Corporation, in recent years has also helped bolster interest in Bollywood among all communities. One battle that is probably unique to South Africa is the constant wrangling about there not being enough Tamil films, both in the cinema and the DVD circuits. Although more than half of the South African Indian population of about 1.2 million is of south Indian origin, suppliers and broadcasters cite the fact that Hindi movies and music are more popular even within that community. Omarjee’s store is eloquent testimony to that. Four years ago, in consultation with the Tamil Federation of South Africa, Omarjee imported a large number of Tamil DVDs. “Most of them are gathering dust on shelves, with sales not even having covered my freight costs. What I do now is import specific titles on request from my Tamil customers,” Omarjee said. Another argument being used is that with the advent of subtitling in English, language has become irrelevant to audiences, the majority of whom do not understand Tamil anyway. “That reasoning is then exactly why Tamil films, many of which are as good as, or even better sometimes than the Hindi films shown here, should also be brought here, so everyone can become familiar with them,” said the president of the South African Tamil Federation, Mickey Chetty. As that linguistic battle around Indian movies continues in South Africa, one thing is certain — audiences are set to grow, albeit slowly, and that growth will not only be in both the South African Indian and expatriate segments but also among black and white South Africans who are increasingly taking to Bollywood. ■

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A selection of new books on Africa and by African writers from www.africabookcentre.com No Easy Victory: African Liberation and American Activists over a Half-Century, 1950-2000 By William Minter, Gail Hovey, and Charles Cobb Jr. (Eds); USA Africa World Press; 248 pp; Paperback; £18.99 A PANORAMIC view of U.S. activism on Africa from 1950 to 2000, activism grounded in a common struggle for justice. It portrays organizations, individual activists, and transnational networks that contributed to African liberation from colonialism and from apartheid in South Africa. In turn, it shows how African struggles informed U.S. activism including the civil rights and black power movements. Intended for activists, analysts, students, researchers, teachers, and anyone concerned with world issues, the authors draw on interviews, research and personal experience to portray the history and stimulate reflection on international solidarity today. The book includes an overview of the half century, short vignettes that feature key actors or events, photo documentation, and five essays. African Symbols By Heike Owusu; Sterling publishing co. Inc., U.S.A.; 320 pp; Paperback; £7.99 FROM MASKS to the symbolic script of the Ashanti, symbols play an important role in all aspects of African life. These sacred items come in a breathtaking array of styles, and here, divided into six areas of cultural similarity, are some of the most beautiful, along with explanations of their meanings. Demons, for most Africans, are responsible for justice and retribution: the superb demon mask shown depicts Kponingo, who belongs to the mythical world of the Senufo in the Ivory Coast. A calabash with the beak of a hornbill, adorned with cowrie shells and made by medicine men, is a typical instrument of witchcraft. Other fascinating symbols include sculptures, cave paintings, status symbols, and art for everyday use.

■ Editor’s Pick

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Love And Courage: A story of Insubordination By George Steinmetz; South Africa. Jacana Media.; 262pp; Paperback; £14.95 INSIDER ACCOUNT of an ANC MP in the first parliament after 1994, telling of her part in such matters as the arms deal and the governments handling of the AIDS pandemic. In this way she develops her own thoughts on how power ought to be exercised and from where the true sources of lasting power derive. For those many in South Africa who are increasingly disenchanted with the use of power by those in positions of authority to garner influence and wealth, to promote their individual interests instead of those of the people who have elected them, and to bully, manipulate and coerce others, this account offers a refreshing vision.

Imagine This By Sade Adeniran; SW books, U.K.; 331 pp; Paperback; £9.99

Purple Hibiscus By Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie; Harper Perennial, UK ; 307 pp; Paperback; £7.99

THE JOURNAL of Lola Ogunwole which she starts at the age of nine; it charts her survival from childhood to adulthood. Born in London to Nigerian parents, Lola and her brother Adebola grow up in a temporary foster home after their mother abandons them. They are briefly reunited with their father when, in danger of losing them for good, he packs up and moves them back to Nigeria to live. For Lola, the trauma of leaving London and settling in Lagos is soon overshadowed by separation from her father and the only constant in her life, her brother Adebola. They are both sent to live with different relatives and Lola ends up with her aunt, in a small village called Idogun where her struggle for survival begins. Shortlisted for the 2008 Commonwealth Writers’ Prize.

FIFTEEN-YEAR-OLD Kambili’s world is circumscribed by the high walls of her family compound in Nigeria. When she is sent to her aunt’s house, and as the country begins to fall apart under a military coup, she discovers love and life beyond the confines of her father’s authority. But there is a price to pay — her new freedom also uncovers a terrible secret at the heart of her family life.

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COLLECTOR’S ITEM In Township Tonight! South Africa’s Black City Music and Theatre By David B. Coplan; U.S.A. Chicago U.P.; 240pp; Paperback; £19.99 THIS PIONEERING social history of black South Africa’s urban music, dance, and theatre established itself as a classic soon after its publication in 1985. As the first substantial history of black performing arts in South Africa, it was championed by a broad range of scholars and treasured by fans of South African music. Now completely revised, expanded, and updated, this new edition takes account of developments over the last thirty years while reflecting on the massive changes in South African politics and society since the end of the apartheid era. Pende: Visions of Africa by Z.S. Strother; Five Continents Editions, Italy.; 124 pp; Paperback; £19.95 ALTHOUGH MANY societies in the Congo were once renowned for vibrant masquerades and architectural sculpture, these phenomena have only been studied as living traditions among a handful of peoples, most notably the Pende. Building on the extended fieldwork of numerous researchers since the 1950s, this text offers a unique window into the dynamic performance contexts of both masquerade and architecture in Central Africa. As much as possible, it privileges Pende voices as it seeks to understand the interrelationship between ritual practice and aesthetic form and also records how these artistic practices have responded to both colonial and post-colonial pressures.

Q U A R T E R L Y Healing Rituals As Theological Drama: Insights from Kaaba Healing Rituals Among the Frafra in Ghana By Abraham Berinyuu; Germany. Lit Verlag; U.K.; 230 pp; Paperback; £19.95 HEALING RITUALS Investigates the role of healing in non-western healing utilising interdisciplinary theoretical perspectives to formulate a new and different theory of ritual and healing. This approach opens a way for a dialectical, contextual hermeneutics of practical theology in non-western culture, from which Christian theology can gain insights into the traditions out of which people become Christian.

■ Naked truth A Crime So Monstrous: A Shocking Expose of Modern-day Sex Slavery, Human Trafficking and Urban Child Markets By E. Benjamin Skinner ; Mainstream Publishing, U.K.; 384 pp; Paperback; £9.99 TWO HUNDRED years after Parliament passed the Abolition of the Slave Trade Act, over 27 million people worldwide languish in slavery, forced to work, under threat of violence, for no pay. In Africa, hundreds of thousands are considered chattel, while on the Indian subcontinent millions languish in generational debt bondage. Across the globe, women and children, sold for sex and labour, are already the second most lucrative commodity for organized crime. Through eviscerating narrative, this book paints a stark picture of modern slavery. Skinner infiltrates trafficking networks and slave sales on five continents. From mega-harems in Khartoum to illicit brothels in Bucharest, from slave quarries in India to urban child markets in Haiti, he lays bare a parallel universe where lives are bought, sold, used and discarded.

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Cion: A Novel By Zakes Mda; Germany. USA. Picador USA; 312 pp; Paperback; £9.99 FOLLOW-UP TO Ways of Dying and centred on Toloki, the professional mourner, as he makes his way through a surreal America on the eve of the 2004 Presidential election. Viewing American cultural and political life from an outsider’s standpoint, Toloki is taken in by an impoverished family; he befriends the son, Obed; falls in love with his melancholy, sister, Orpah; and learns to quilt from their mother, Ruth. Explores the legacy of the Civil War and the Underground Railroad.

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■ Looking Back Of extermination and attrition without parallel Tip and Run: The Untold Tragedy of the Great War in Africa By Edward Paice; Pheonix, U.K.; 488 pp; Paperback; £12.99 A ‘SMALL WAR’, consisting of a few ‘local affairs’, was all that was expected in August 1914 as Britain moved to eliminate the threat to the high seas of German naval bases in Africa. But two weeks after the Armistice was signed in Europe British and German troops were still fighting in Africa after four years of what one campaign historian described as “a war of extermination and attrition without parallel in modern times”. The expense of the campaign to the British Empire was immense, the Allied and German “butchers bills” even greater. But the most tragic consequence of the two sides’ deadly game of ‘tip and run’ was the devastation of an area five times the size of Germany, and civilian suffering on a scale unimaginable in Europe. Such was the cost of ‘The White Man’s Palaver’, the final phase of the European conquest of Africa. The Commitment Of The German Democratic Republic In Ethiopia:A study based on Ethiopian sources By Haile Gabriel Dagne; Germany. Lit Verlag; 105 pp; Paperback; £13.95 STUDY OF the general political conditions and details of the extensive commitment of the German Democratic Republic in Ethiopia between 1976 and 1990 as part of Ethiopia’s drive towards the Eastern Bloc. Uses Ethiopian sources, especially concerning military and security issues, which are not available to the broad public. Examines the GDR’s exertion of influence in the areas of politics, ideology, military, and domestic security, in particular.

■ Fiction

AT THE end of the nineteenth century European pimps and ‘white slavers’ established a hugely successful global market for commercial sex and for three turbulent decades before the First World War, Joseph Silver was central to this hidden world of betrayal, intrigue, lust and sexual slavery. Burglar, gun-runner and trafficker in women on four continents, Silver was a disturbed adolescent, youthful predator and adult misogynist whose notoriety was captured in the most confidential correspondence of a dozen countries in the West. But what those in charge of the law kept to themselves was how their officers had attempted to use Silver as an informer to infiltrate syndicates, only to have him outwit them. In this brilliant study, Charles van Onselen situates the private life of one man amidst the demi-monde of the Atlantic world and casts a brilliant light on the most infamous serial killer of all time — Jack the Ripper.

■ Trailing AIDS The Miracle At Speedy Motors By Alexander McCall Smith; UK Little Brown, U.K.; 256 pp; Hardback; £14.99

IT HASnever occurred to Precious Ramotswe that there may be disadvantages to being the best-known lady detective in Botswana. But when she receives a threatening anonymous letter, she is compelled to reconsider her unconquerable belief in a kind world and good neighbours. While she ponders the identity of the letter-writer Mma Ramotswe has a further set of problems to solve, both professional and personal. There is an adopted child’s poignant search for her true family, and Mr J. L. B. Matekoni’s pursuit of an expensive miracle for their own foster daughter Motheleli. With these latest developments on Tlokweng Road, Alexander McCall Smith reveals with all his brilliant storytelling skill that there are very few troubles that cannot be solved with kindness, and very few dry seasons that do not end with welcome rain.

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The Fox And The Flies: The Criminal Empire of the Whitechapel Murderer By Charles Van Onselen, Vintage, U.K.; 646 pp; Paperback; £9.99

February-April 2008

Twenty-Eight: Stories of AIDS in Africa By Stephanie Nolen ; Portobello Books, UK ; 408 pp; Paperback; £8.99 FROM NELSON Mandela’s decision to go public about the cause of his son’s death, to the miraculous outcome of a Tutsi woman’s horrific ordeal at the hands of Hutu soldiers, and the priests, doctors and aid workers determined to help the suffering, here we meet 28 individuals whose lives have been affected by the disease. Taking these personal experiences as starting points, Nolen’s book also tells the bigger story of how the continent reached this crisis.


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Bestsellers in India With its promise of secrets that have never been told, BJP leader L.K. Advani’s autobiography ‘My Country, My Life’ has zoomed to No.1 position in the non-fiction list this week while old favourite Jeffrey Archer is top fiction seller with his latest, ‘A Prisoner of Birth’. TOP 10: NON-FICTION 1. My Country, My Life Author: L.K. Advani Publisher: Rupa & Co. Price: Rs.595 2. The Secret Author: Rhonda Byrne Publisher: Simon & Schuster Price: Rs.550 3. Billions of Entrepreneurs Author: Tarun Khanna Publisher: Penguin Viking Price: Rs.595 4. The Adventures of Amir Hamza Author: Musharraf Ali Farooqi Publisher: Random House Price: Rs.750 5. Delhi Metropolitan: The Making of an Unlikely City Author: Ranjana Sengupta Publisher: Penguin Books Price: Rs.250 6. Eating India: Exploring a Nation’s Cuisine Author: Chitrita Banerji Publisher: Penguin Books Price: Rs.350

7. Summits : Six Meetings that Shaped the Twentieth Century Author: David Reynolds Publisher: Penguin Allen Lane Price: Rs.800 8. The Three Trillion Dollar War Author: Joseph Stiglitz, Linda Bilmes Publisher: Allen Lane Penguin Price: Rs.800 9. On Empire: America, War, and Global Supremacy Author: Eric Hobsbawm Publisher: Pantheon Books Price: Rs.595

10. Reconciliation: Islam, Democracy & The West Author : Benazir Bhutto Publisher : Simon & Schuster Price : Rs.795 TOP 10: FICTION 1. A Prisoner of Birth Author: Jeffrey Archer Publisher: PAN Books Price: Rs.239 2. The Appeal Author: John Grisham Publisher: Arrow Books Price: Rs.239 3. Remember Me? Author: Sophie Kinsella Publisher: Bantam Press Price: Rs.541

4. A Thousand Splendid Suns Author: Khaled Hosseini Publisher: Bloomsbury Price: Rs.480 5. The Kite Runner Author: Khaled Hosseini Publisher: Bloomsbury Price : Rs.280 6. The Japanese Wife Author: Kunal Basu Publisher: Harper Collins Price: Rs.395 7. The Palace of Illusions Panchaali’s Mahabharat Author: Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni Publisher: Picador India Price: Rs.495 8. Change of Heart Author: Jodi Picoult Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton Price: Rs.601 9. P.S. I Love You Author: Cecelia Ahern Publisher: Harper Price: Rs.195 10. Double Cross Author: James Patterson Publisher: Headline Price: Rs.395

(Source: Bahri Sons, New Delhi, www.booksatbahri.com. All the books listed above are available online)

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Defying stereotypes, Africa today is an amalgam of the traditional and the modern, radiating a new energy and forging a bold new world order. It’s a continent whose impulses are central to our collective future. frica is home to some of the most beautiful places on earth: lush primordial forests, breathtaking waterfalls, pristine lakes, majestic lions lazing in nature’s lap and a most fabulous variety of flora and fauna... And those are the first impressions. But the continent is romancing destiny. Shimmering steel and asphalt, towering skyscrapers, and busy humming metropolises, bustling commerce and stock exchanges, all power contemporary Africa. And that is the unfolding journey of Africa’s transformation into a vibrant, dynamic continent on the move...

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Vignettes of splendour Travel back in time and experience India... Relive its history and aesthetic crafted in its timeless monuments, or luxuriate in the serene beauty of a coral island; or simply day dream on a house boat...

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ounded by the majestic Himalayan ranges in the north and edged by an endless stretch of golden beaches, India is a vivid kaleidoscope of landscapes, magnificent historical sites and royal cities, misty mountain retreats, colourful people, rich cultures and festivities. The timeless mystery and beauty of India awaits you with a legacy of over 5,000 years — warm and inviting, a place of infinite variety... The misty, mystical, serene, sensual hill stations in India are a perfect holiday option for those who want to do-away their big city blues. Situated at heights ranging from 600 metres to 3,500 metres above sea level, most hill stations or resorts of India are literally head and shoulders above other tourist destinations in India. What is most unique about these hill stations in India is the fact that their existence is confined to India — a contribution of colonial India. Some of the most popular hill stations worldwide are Shimla, Mussoorie, Darjeeling, Ladakh, Nainital, Kullu, Ooty, Srinagar, Manali, Dalhousie, Mount Abu, Dharamsala, Kasauli and Khajjiar, among many others. There are many activities for those vacationing at the hill stations. From camping, trekking, rock climbing, white river rafting, skiing, snow sports, water sport to mountain biking, the hill stations and resorts offer all kind of treats. India has some of the most beautiful and evocative monuments in the world. These monumental heritages of India owe their execution to the imagination of men who dared to extend their ideas to the farthest limits of human thought. The historical city of Agra houses the majestic Taj Mahal — amongst the most popular monuments in the world. The crowning glory of the city of Agra is obviously the Taj, a monument of love and imagination that has come to typify India. The monuments span centuries and major philosophies of the world. From the pinnacle of architecture to the timelessness of the erotic representations in the temples of Khajuraho, from the exquisite and mega-sized temples of South India to the monuments of peace in Nalanda, India

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perhaps has the most versatile architectural styles showcased by its monuments. At Nalanda you can visit the Buddhist monasteries, chaityas and stupas — votive or commemorative. There are remains of temples with high standards of sculpture depicting household scenes, dancers, and floral motifs. The Nalanda museum, established in 1971, has a vast collection of ancient manuscripts and Buddhist statues. The Neemrana Fort of Rajasthan, one of the oldest heritage resorts of India, is situated on a majestic plateau of the Aravalli ranges and was built in AD 1464 by Prithviraj Chauhan-III. Fatehpur Sikri of Agra in Uttar Pradesh is a city built in red sandstone. It is one of the finest examples of Mughal architectural splendour at its height and is the best example of the synthesis of Hindu and Muslim architectural styles. The Fatehpur Sikri Mosque is said to be a copy of the mosque in Mecca and has designs, derived from Persian and Hindu architecture. To the east of India in Orissa, stands the Sun Temple of Konark on a deserted stretch of coast on the Bay of Bengal. The magnificent Sun Temple represents the classical aesthetics of Orissan temple architecture, and is one of the most stunning monuments of religious architecture in the world. Built by King Narasimhadeva in the 13th century, the temple was designed in the shape of a colossal chariot

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Hawa Mahal, Rajasthan

India’s luxury trains — the Palace on Wheels, Golden Chariot, Deccan Odyssey, Heritage on Wheels and Fairy Queen offer a royal experience as you journey through some of the most beautiful regions of the world.

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with seven horses and twelve wheels, carrying the sun god, Surya, across the heavens. Surya has been a popular deity in India since the Vedic period . Situated in the heart of Central India, in the state of Madhya Pradesh, Khajuraho is a fascinating village with a quaint rural ambience and a rich cultural heritage. The fascinating temples of Khajuraho, India’s unique gift of love to the world represent the expression of a highly matured civilisation. It is one of the top tourist places of India. The caves of Ajanta and Ellora, situated near Mumbai are worth visiting for their remarkable reliefs, sculptures, and architecture. The Ellora caves are situated outside the city of Aurangabad, 400 km northeast of Mumbai. These caves are 34 in number and are carved into the sides of a basaltic hill. The Ajanta caves are 30 km from Aurangabad — these depict the story of Buddhism, spanning a period from 200 BC to 650 AD. These structures, representing the three faiths of Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism, were carved between 350 AD to 700 AD. When it comes to selecting a beach holiday in India, the options are unlimited. A 7,500-km long Indian coastline provides hundreds of options for beach lovers. And there are white beaches and then there are golden beaches. The beaches of Goa , Orissa, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Andaman and Lakshadweepare world-class and have excellent infrastructure to support travellers. There are also exclusive, private beaches, superb water sport facilities, top line transportation and accommodation, a choice of international cuisines, and an amazing range of marine life. Some of the best Indian beaches are Goa’s Paula Beach, Anjuna Beach,

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MAJOR HILLSTATIONS

North

Badrinath Chail Gangotri Khajjiar Kullu Manali Mount Abu Mussoorie Nainital Shimla Sonamarg

South

East

Anantagiri Coonoor Coorg Devikulam Horsley Idukki

Darjeeling Kalimpong Mirik Shillong Tawang Gangtok Itanagar Pasighat Zero/Ziro Haflong Pelling

Kodaikanal Munnar Nandi Ooty Peermeedu

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TRAILS OF REJUVENATION

West

Kerala backwaters

Khandala Lonavala Mahabaleshwar Matheran Panchgani Panhala Saputara Pachmarhi

Goa

Darjeeling

Ladakh

AYURVEDA HOLIDAYS

WILD LIFE SANCTUARIES

Kerala is noted for its rejuvenative and curative Ayur-vedic herbs and oils. There are also herbal powders and juices, which are made into arishtams (liquid portions) and lehyams (thick jellies), which can be consumed. Their smells, extracts and flavours help in the various curative treatments. These treatments, including Ayurvedic massages, today attract people from all over the world. Bharatpur Wildlife Sanctuary

Corbett National Park

Sariska Wildlife Sanctuary

Gir National Park & Sanctuary

Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary

Ranthambore National Park

Sundarbans

Mudumalai Wildlife Sanctuary

Colva Beach; Orissa’s Gopalpur-on-Sea, Puri Beach; Kerala’s Kovalam Beach; and the breathtaking beaches of the islands of Andamans and Lakshadweep. From the beaches to the backwaters is a short hop, particularly in Kerala, described in Indian tourism promos as ‘God’s own Country’. The state has over 900 km of interconnected waterways, rivers, lakes and inlets that make Kerala’s backwaters. In the midst of this beautiful landscape, there are a number of towns and cities, which service Kerala’s backwater cruises. These backwater destinations are a mixture of historic and modern towns and scenic holiday getaways, and are part of the itinerary of most international tourists. Some of the most scenic Kerala backwater destinations are Cochin, Alappuzha, Kasargod, Kollam, Kottayam, Kozhikode, Kumarakom, Kuttanad, Thiruvallam and Thiruvananthapuram. The fauna of the Indian subcontinent has remained unique, mysterious and fascinating for nature lovers. A variety of India’s wildlife can be seen in the country’s 80 national parks, 441 sanctuaries and 23 tiger reserves established by the Government of India in an attempt to conserve this vital resource. You can spot a striped predator amidst the tall

grass of the Jim Corbett National Park or the wetlands of the world famous Sunderbans, or watch herds of wild elephants and deer in their natural habitat. What makes the experience even more enthralling is that most Indian sanctuaries can be explored on elephant back as well as by jeeps. A wildlife tour is incomplete if you don’t actually live in a forest for a few days. Imagine living in a rest house or a tent in the midst of dense wilderness, and waking up to the twittering of birds, or maybe the roar of a lion! The outstanding riches of Indian wildlife, compare favourably with that of Africa. Experience exotic India, live like a maharaja in the rich ambiance of royal forts and palaces that are now heritage hotels; luxuriate in the serene beauty of a coral island with its turquoise lagoon; participate in the exuberance of a village fair or a colourful festival; day dream on a house-boat drifting down palm-fringed backwaters; delight in the grace of a dancer or shop till you drop — buying exquisite silks, carved figurines, brass and silver ware, marble inlaid with semi-precious stones, finely crafted jewellry, miniature paintings, carpets. India, always warm and inviting, is a place of infinite variety — one that fascinates and intrigues unfailingly . ■

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Contributors

■ AFTAB KAMAL PASHA served as director, Maulana Azad Centre for Indian Culture, Cairo, Egypt (1999-2002). He has been a research fellow at the Faculty of Economics and Political Science, Cairo University, Egypt, during 1985-86. He was chairman, the Centre for West Asian and African Studies, and director, Gulf Studies, School of International Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. He has published twelve books, including Egypt’s Relation’s with the Soviet Union: The Nasser and Sadat Period and Libya in the Arab World: Qadhafi’s Quest for Arab Unity. ■ A.S. YARUINGAM is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of African Studies at the University of Delhi. ■ GIRIJESH CHANDRA PANT is a professor and former head of the Centre of West Asian and African Studies at

Jawaharlal Nehru University, in New Delhi, India. He has authored and edited eight books and published more than fifty research articles in journals including International Studies, Indian Foreign Affairs Journal and World Affairs. He recently published a book on India’s energy security. ■ FAKIR HASSEN is the South Africa correspondent for the Indo-Asian News Service. He has been involved in edu-

cation, broadcasting and journalism for more than three decades and has written extensively on the Indian Diaspora. ■ K. MATHEWS, a noted expert on African affairs and international relations, is currently professor of International Relations at the Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia. Earlier, he was Professor of African Studies and Head of the Department at the University of Delhi (1991-2003). He has taught at the Universities of Dar-es Salaam, Tanzania (1976-82), and at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, (1982-90). He has also held visiting research/teaching positions in several universities/institutions, including the University of Oxford, England (1988-89) and Carlton University, Ottawa, Canada. He has over 80 publications to his credit. His book, Africa, India and South-South Cooperation is widely referred in India and abroad. ■ MANI SHANKAR AIYAR, a former diplomat, is Union Minister of Youth Affairs & Sports in India. He served as

Union Cabinet Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas from May 2004 through January 2006. He has authored and edited many books, including Rajiv Gandhi’s India and Confessions of a Secular Fundamentalist. ■ MOHAMED HIGAZI, a senior diplomat and scholar, is Egypt’s Ambassador to India. ■ MANISH CHAND is Editor of Africa Quarterly. He writes on foreign policy, politics, culture and books. His articles have been published in leading national and international dailies and research journals. He has travelled extensively as a journalist and reported on international issues from different places around the world. Last year, he travelled to Darfur for a first-hand account of the ethnic crisis afflicting the resource-rich region in Sudan. ■ RANJIT KUMAR is working as special correspondent for defence and diplomatic affairs with Navbharat Times, New

Delhi. Kumar has written books on the Kargil conflict, India’s nuclear policy and on SAARC titled South Asian Union. ■ DR. RASHMI KAPOOR is a lecturer in Swahili in the Department of African Studies, University of Delhi. Her field of specialisation is African sociology in general and Swahili language in particular. She has extensively written on the Indian Diaspora in Africa. She is a member of Sudan Study Unit in the Africa Studies Department of Delhi University. ■ DR. SURESH KUMAR is a senior lecturer in the Department of African Studies, Delhi University. He has also served

as associate professor in the Department of Political Science, College of Social Sciences, Eritrea Institute of Technology, Mai Nefhi. He has contributed research papers for various journals. He is a co-investigator in a major research project of the UGC of India on ‘Geopolitics Federalism: Vision of North and South Sudan from March 2006 to 2009’. . ■ SHUBHA SINGH is a senior journalist and has worked with two leading Indian newspapers for more than two decades. She has been writing a weekly column on foreign affairs and politics for over ten years. She has travelled extensively as a journalist, taking special interest in regions that have large settlements of people of Indian origin. She has written two books entitled Fiji: A Precarious Coalition and Overseas Indians: The Global Family. ■ VIDHAN PATHAK has done his Ph. D on ‘India’s Relations with Francophone West Africa’ from Centre for West

Asian and African Studies, School of International Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi.

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A F R I C A

Q U A R T E R L Y

Note to Contributors Africa Quarterly, published since 1961, is devoted to the study and objective analyses of African affairs and issues related to India-Africa relations. Contributions are invited from outstanding writers, experts and specialists in India, Africa and other countries on various political, economic, social-cultural, literary, philosophical and other themes pertaining to African affairs and India-Africa relations. Preference will be given to those articles which deal succinctly with issues that are both important and clearly defined. Articles which are purely narrative and descriptive and lacking in analytical content are not likely to be accepted. Contributions should be in a clear, concise, readable style and written in English. Articles submitted to Africa Quarterly should be original contributions and should not be under consideration by any other publication at the same time. The Editor is responsible for the selection and acceptance of articles, but responsibility for errors of facts and opinions expressed in them rests with authors. Manuscripts submitted should be accompanied with a statement that the same has not been submitted/accepted for publication elsewhere. Copyright of articles published in the Africa Quarterly will be retained by the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR). Manuscripts submitted to Africa Quarterly should be typed double space on one side of the paper and two copies should be sent. A diskette (3 ½” ) MS-Dos compatible, and e-mail as an attachment should be sent along with the two hard copies. Authors should clearly indicate their full name, address, e-mail, academic status and current institutional affiliation. A brief biographical note (one paragraph) about the writer may also be sent. The length of the article should not normally exceed 7,000 to 8,000 words, or 20 to 25 ( A-4 size) typed pages in manuscript. Titles should be kept as brief as possible. Footnote numbering should be clearly marked and consecutively numbered in the text and notes placed at the end of the article and not at the bottom of the relevant page. Tables (including graphs, maps, figures) must be submitted in a form suitable for reproduction on a separate sheet of paper and not within the text. Each table should have a clear descriptive title and mention where it is to be placed in the article. Place all footnotes in a table at the end of the article. Reference numbers within the text should be placed after the punctuation mark. Footnote style: In the case of books, the author, title of the book, place of publication, publisher, date of publication and page numbers should be given in that order, e.g. Basil Davidson, ‘The Blackman’s Burden: Africa and the Curse of the Nation State’, London, James Curry, 1992, pp. 15-22. In the case of articles, the author, title of article, name of the journal, volume and issue number in brackets, the year and the page numbers should be given in that order. In addition to major articles and research papers, Africa Quarterly also publishes short articles in the section titled News & Events. They may not exceed 2,000 words in length. Contributions of short stories and poems are also welcome. Contributors to Africa Quarterly are entitled to two copies of the issue in which their article appears in addition to a modest honorarium. Contributors of major articles accepted for publication will receive up to a maximum of Rs. 4,000. Contributions may be sent by post to: The Editor Africa Quarterly Indian Council for Cultural Relations Azad Bhavan Indraprastha Estate New Delhi-110 002 Contributions may be e-mailed to: africa.quarterly@gmail.com

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