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Vol 1 (AAC) No 2

Published 1st December 2007

Strategic partnerships

India competes with China and the West in the rush for contracts, metals and energy

India is upgrading diplomatic, economic and strategic ties with several African states in the search for oil and gas to meet its energy needs, which are expected to double by 2010, in order to sustain its current economic boom. Officials say they intend to build on past support forged during their anti-colonial struggle to strengthen relations with the 53-member African Union and emerging regional organisations by extending credit and by expanding trade and defence links. In exchange, India’s state-owned petroleum major ONGC Videsh Limited has since 2004 secured oil and gas exploration rights in Southern Sudan and Nigeria to add to its concessions in Libya, Algeria and Egypt. India’s Petroleum Ministry, headed by Murli Deora, led the charge to increase the countries exploration and production acreage in Africa at the end of 2007. In early November, India organised its first-ever India-Africa Hydrocarbon Conference, which was attended by 26 African countries and ten ministerial delegations.

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