India has offered a $5-billion line of credit to African states for various development projects as it looks to improve relations with the resource-rich continent. Prime minister Manmohan Singh announced the package at the Africa-India Forum Summit at the Ethiopian capital of Addis Ababa today.
Addressing the plenary session of the Second Africa-India Forum Summit, the prime minister also offered an additional $700-million package to establish new institutions and training programmes across the African continent and a $300 million credit facility for a new Ethio-Djibouti railway line in Ethiopia.
"We will offer $5 billion for the next three years under lines of credit to help Africa achieve its development goals. We will offer an additional $700 million to establish new institutions and training programmes in consultation with the African Union and its institutions," the prime minister said.
He said there was a new economic growth story emerging from Africa and offered India's support to Africa to realise this.
"Africa possesses all the prerequisites to become a major growth pole of the world. There is good news in the struggle against HIV and AIDS, as well as in improving literacy, reducing infant mortality and building institutions of representative government" he pointed out.
He, however, struck a note of caution about the current international economic and political situation, which, he said, "is far from favourable, particularly for developing countries."