The Union Commerce Ministry has recently reviewed India–Africa trade through institutional mechanisms to promote ease of doing business. The review was done through institutional mechanisms like joint commission meetings (JCMs), joint trade committees (JTCs) and joint working groups (JWGs).
Some of the major highlights of the institutional mechanisms were the 9th session of the India-Kenya Joint trade committee held in New Delhi during August, 2019 under the co-chairmanship of union commerce minister Piyush Goyal and his Kenyan counterpart Peter Munya, cabinet secretary for Ministry of Industry, trade and cooperatives, Government of the Republic of Kenya.
During the meet, wide ranging discussions were held cutting across sectors like pharmaceuticals, health and collaboration to recognise Indian Pharmacopoeia (IP) in Kenya.
Other highlights include, the 1st India-Nigeria JTC held in December, 2019 in New Delhi under the co-chair of commerce secretary, Government of India and his Nigerian counterpart. During the meeting, discussions also included recognition of IP.
Besides this, the first meeting of the India-South Africa JWG on trade and investment held in January 2019 deliberated upon the bottlenecks including non-tariff barriers and suggestions to boost India’s trade with the region.
In order to leverage the presence of Indian business community in Africa for promoting India’s exports to the region, three rounds of interactions of commerce ministry were organized through Indian missions in Madagascar, Tanzania, Mauritius, Kenya, Uganda, South Africa, Zambia, Mozambique, Ghana, Botswana, Nigeria, Morocco, Senegal, Zimbabwe, Cote d’Ivoire, Ethiopia and Egypt over Digital Video Conference (DVC) in May, 2019.
For promoting India-Africa trade and economic relations, a regional conclave was also organised by the union commerce ministry, Government of India jointly with Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) in March 2019 in New Delhi. On the sidelines of the conclave/regional conclave, bilateral meetings with participating countries were also held at the Ministerial level to boost Indian participation in exports to African countries.
The conclave was attended by head of the States from three African countries. Ministers along with around 500 business delegates from Africa participated in the conclave. On the sidelines of the conclave, bilateral meetings were held between Minister of State (Commerce and Industry) with Trade Ministers of African countries, issues related to trade, investments and cooperation in pharmaceutical sector were discussed. Various opportunities in exports were discussed by Indian and African business delegates in B2B meetings.
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