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India's experiences as developing country can help Africa

world Updated: Jun 17, 2010 15:33 IST
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India's experiences as a developing country can help Africa on its own path of development and many policy solutions that India has developed can have relevance for the continent of one billion people, India's top diplomat in the US has said.

Noting that India has "historical ties" with Africa, Indian Ambassador in Washington US Meera Shankar said India brings to the table its own experience as a developing country that has sought to pursue the path of development in a democratic framework and within a highly pluralistic society and polity.

She was speaking at a discussion on 'Partnering with Africa: US and India's Perspectives' organised jointly by the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, a Washington-based think tank, and Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry.

Diplomats and corporate leaders said yesterday that there is need for India and the US to join hands and work together in the continent of immense economic potential.

"As we look towards what India and the US can do together, I know, we had some discussions together at the government level and I think, what we have said that while we would continue our own government programme on a bilateral basis with Africa, perhaps what could be considered is if the US wanted to use Indian experts for some of their programmes or have training within India," Shankar said.

"That's the kind of thing, in which we can make a beginning in working together," Shankar said.

She said Africa is a continent with enormous natural resources and increasingly it has witnessed political consolidation and improvement in governance which augurs well for the future.

"Many of the solutions that we have developed or the policies that we have applied in India have relevance for Africa," she said.

In his opening remarks, FICCI president Rajan Bharti Mittal said it would not be fair if the successful business model developed by India is not put to use in a continent like Africa with one billion people.

Mittal said both the United States and India have a role to play in the development of Africa.

Other speakers at the discussion were Suresh Kumar, Assistant Secretary of Commerce at the US Department of Commerce; Amina S Ali, Ambassador of African Union Mission to the USA and Donald Y Yamamoto, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State.