India–Namibia relations

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Indo-Namibian relations
Map indicating locations of India and Namibia

India

Namibia

India–Namibia relations refers to the current and historical relationship between India and Namibia. India has a high commissioner in Windhoek[1] and Namibia has a high commissioner in New Delhi. Namibia's high commissioner is also accredited for Bangladesh, the Maldives and Sri Lanka.[2] In 2010, relations were described by Indian officials as "warm and cordial".[3]

Liberation movement[edit]

India was one of SWAPO's earliest supporters during the Namibian liberation movement. The first SWAPO embassy was established in India in 1986. India's observer mission was converted to a full High Commission on Namibia's independence day of 21 March 1990.[3]

Since independence[edit]

India has helped train the Namibian Air Force since its creation in 1995. The two countries work closely in mutual multilateral organisations such as the United Nations, Non-Aligned Movement and the Commonwealth of Nations. Namibia supports expansion of the United Nations Security Council to include a permanent seat for India.[3]

Visits[edit]

A number of high-ranking Indian officials have visited Namibia since independence in 1990; Indian Prime Minister V. P. Singh, former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi and other high-ranking politicians were in Namibia for its independence day celebrations in 1990. President Shankar Dayal Sharma visited Namibia in 1995 and Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee visited in 1998 as well as numerous ministerial visits.[3] In July 2010, Minister of State for External Affairs Preneet Kaur visited Namibia ahead of the 13th Exim Bank Conclave on India Africa Project Partnership.[3]

A number of high-ranking Namibian officials have visited India as well; as of 2010, President Sam Nujoma had visited India 11 times.[3] In August–September 2009, Namibian President Hifikepunye Pohamba made his first visit as President to India.[4] 43 business leaders and politicians accompanied Pohamba on the trip, which took them to New Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore and Agra.[5]

Trade and investment[edit]

In 2008–09, trade between the two countries stood at approximately US$80 million. Namibia's main imports from India were drugs and pharmaceuticals, chemicals, agricultural machinery, automobile and automobile parts, glass and glassware, plastic and linoleum products. India primarily imported nonferrous metals, ores and metal scarps. Indian products are also exported to neighboring South Africa and re-imported to Namibia as South African imports. Namibian diamonds are often exported to European diamond markets before being again imported to India. In 2009, the first direct sale of Namibian diamonds to India took place.[3] In 2008, two Indian companies won a US$105 million contract from NamPower to lay a high-voltage direct current bi-polar line from Katima Mulilo to Otjiwarongo.[3] Namibia is a beneficiary of the Indian Technical and Economic Cooperation (ITEC) programme for telecommunications professionals from developing countries.[5]

References[edit]