New Delhi: Noting that there was a scope
of increasing its security cooperation with African nations to
counter threats of terrorism and piracy, India today said it
was not competing with China or any other country in
establishing such ties.
"We are not in competition with any country. We are
not guided by any country when we formulate our policies. We
have an old, constructive relationship with Africa," Secretary
(West) in the External Affairs Ministry Vivek Katju said.
Katju, who was addressing a seminar on India-Africa
relations, was replying to a query on what steps India was
taking to counter the Chinese efforts to establish close ties
with African countries.
Asked if India was planning to hold any military
exercises with African countries, he said India was already
providing training to the militaries of Africa and our teams
have also been deployed in some of these countries.
He said that India was already working with the
eastern African countries to tackle the threat of piracy and
there was scope of further increasing cooperation in this
regard as it was impacting both the sides.
The official said India and countries of Africa were
also interacting on the ways to deal with the terrorism issue.
Commenting on the investments to be made by the Indian
government and private sector companies in Africa, he said
that it would be difficult to quantify it.
Katju said companies investing in the agriculture
sector have been asked to exercise caution due to the
"sensitive land issues".
He also listed the various programmes for capability
creation and human resources development projects being
carried out by India in Africa.