Trade and Cultural ties between India and Ghana Strengthens: Foreign Minister of Ghana Visits India
Ancient day Ghana was known to the Arab traders as the land of ‘gold’ and today the country is known for the ‘golden opportunities’ it provides to the global community. The Republic of Ghana set in the beautiful Gulf of Guinea and the Atlantic Ocean was a former British colony and gained independence on 6th March 1957. The relation between any formerly colonized countries is that they share a history along common lines and the process of independence is something they have had their poets and authors to write about. A very close one to this could be stressed about the relation between India and Ghana, which the world noticed when Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru and President Kwame Nkrumah worked during the Non-Aligned Movement, establishing a cause of independence through constructive and peaceful methods which continues till date.
The India-Ghana relations sparked again when the Minister for Foreign Affairs and regional integration of Ghana, Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey visited the country on an official tour for ‘working purposes’ during July 16-19. On Monday, the Foreign Minister and her delegation met the Minister of External Affairs Sushma Swaraj for a high lunch and talks were conducted thereafter. The Ghanaian Foreign Minister’s main motive for the visit was to make the trade between the two countries stronger and also to offer exchanges to the business community.
She met with the Indian business community and shared plentiful opportunities which could further bring in investment both ways. The politico-economic relations are speculated to be even stronger after her current visit along with the countries cultural ties. In present-day Ghana, a total of 10,000 Indians are residing and this sort of bilateral relation has further helped the governments to work closely in enhancing cooperation, capacity building, trade and investment and above all a people-to-people relationship.
Following the meeting between EAM @sushmaswaraj and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ghana Shirley Botchwey, two MOUs on Cultural Exchange Programme and on cooperation between Bureau of Indian Standards and Ghana Standards Authority were signed. pic.twitter.com/rS4V7HWZiN
— Raveesh Kumar (@MEAIndia) July 18, 2018
A memorandum of understanding (MoU) on Cultural Exchange Programme between the Bureau of Indian Standards and Ghana Standards Authority was signed during the meet, as informed by the Ministry of External Affairs Spokesperson, Raveesh Kumar. Apart from trade and commerce, both the countries have expressed support for their United Nations Security Council candidature. The countries also agreed on taking responsibility for training youth and skill development programs.
Prior to this visit, a Business Forum was held in Accra, Ghana on July 3rd, 2018 and a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between the Association of GhanaIndustries (AGI) and the Chamber of Marathwada Industries and Agriculture (CMIA). The Business forum witnessed a lot of agreements between the countries and one of the major development in the relations between the two countries definitely took place when the CMIA promoted initiatives which could be taken up in Ghana through advanced engineering and the Institute of AppliedScience & Technology.
The Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC) reported that India is Ghana’s second largest investor after China. The India Ghana trade was estimated at 3.5 billion dollars which might have been predicted to cross 5 billion dollars by 2020 with the recent trade advancements. Earlier this year in March 2018, President Akufo Addo attended the International Solar Alliance, which is an agreement seeking to increase solar energy investment in developing countries, India included. India has been active in Ghana’s ‘Jubilee House Presidential Project’contributing an amount of 139 million dollars and also 1 million dollars for the renovation of the Presidential Palace which is underway. A report released by Ghana states that after the visit of the Foreign Minister to India, the branches of Indian companies such as Tata Motors, Ashok Leyland, Bank of Baroda etc, are likely to have an increase in their operational projects. Apart from adding a business perspective to this bilateral relation, the cultural exchange between the countries has been tremendous. Indian feature films have been constantly put up in the theatres in Ghana, student exchange programmes and religiously too Ghana has never failed to create a home spirit for the Indians living there.
A relation between India and Ghana continues to progress as they share the same vision of developmental strides and will continue to remain connected for the history they have shared and the values and morale they continue to establish through such relations.
*Arijita Sinha Roy is a Research Intern at The Kootneeti
The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Kootneeti Team