India has become one of the leading investors on the African
continent, with investments in joint ventures and wholly-owned
subsidiaries touching the US$33 billion mark.
The India-Africa relationship is not new. It draws on a long,
shared history of struggle against European colonialism, and a
determination to ensure equality in the post-colonial world
Growing trade relations between India and Africa have achieved
thriving business partnerships across key African economies.
Various Indian companies are now increasing their business reach
within the African region through adopting organic growth
It is evident that economic optimisation, increased government
support, a strong pipeline for new products launches and resource
abundance, are the key enablers which will drive the investments to
Africa. Fundamental differences in the resources, labour, and
capital endowments of Africa and India make them complementary
business partners – meaning that the trend will likely be
Annual trade between India and Africa increased 15-fold within a
decade to US$46 billion in 2010, from US$3 billion in 2000.The
Indian government is determined to achieve a target of US$70
billion in trade well before 2014. The investment covers sectors
such as oil and gas, pharmaceuticals, petrochemicals, IT,
fertilisers and infrastructure. India's investments in
agriculture and telecommunications may also have more of a direct
economic impact on the lives of ordinary Africans, 70 percent of
whom are engaged in some form of agriculture, and at least 30
percent of whom have access to a mobile phone.
Commercial relations between these two countries have flourished
since the establishment of diplomatic relations in 1993. On the
trade front, the value of bilateral trade has trebled from US$2.5
billion in 2003-2004 to US$7.5 billion in 2008-09. During the visit
of President Zuma to India, both sides agreed to work towards a
target of US$10 billion in bilateral trade by 2012. The trade
target was revised to US$15 billion by 2014 during the visit of the
Commerce and Industry Minister in January, 2011 to South Africa, as
it was estimated that the bilateral trade target of US$12 billion
would be achieved in FY 2010-11.
Recent bilateral trade figures are as follows: There is
substantial potential for trade growth between the two countries.
Exports from India to South Africa include vehicles and components
thereof, transport equipment, drugs and pharmaceuticals, computer
software, engineering goods, footwear, dyes and intermediates,
chemicals, textiles, rice, and gems and jewellery, etc. Imports of
South Africa into India include rock phosphates, precious stones
and minerals, fertilizers, steel, coal, transport equipment, pulp
and pulp manufacturing, etc.
Investment from South Africa to India from April 2000 to
December 2010 was estimated at US$109.88 million [Source: DIPP].
Further, cumulative investment from India into South Africa from
January 1994 to January 2011 was estimated at US$212 million. Major
investors include Tata (automobiles, IT, hospitality, and
ferrochrome plant), UB Group (breweries, hotels), Mahindra
(automobiles) and a number of pharmaceutical companies, including
Ranbaxy, CIPLA, etc as well as IT companies and some investments in
the mining sector.
The Act has brought about fundamental changes in the manner in which shareholder resolutions are passed.
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