India - Ghana Bilateral Relations
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High Commission of India
Accra

India-Ghana Bilateral Brief

Political relations:

Indo-Ghanaian relations have traditionally been warm and friendly. The strong foundation of our bilateral relations was laid by India's first Prime Minister, Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru, and Ghana's first President, Dr. Kwame Nkrumah. The two great leaders also enjoyed a close friendship.

The visit of Hon’ble Rashtrapathiji to Ghana from June 12-14, 2016, which was the first-ever State visit by an Indian Head of State, was the highlight of the year. The high-level visit helped further strengthen the bilateral ties between India and Ghana. President Pranab Mukherjee was accompanied by Shri Jitendra Singh, MOS (PMO, Shri S.S. Ahluwalia, MP (Lok Sabha) and Shri Mansukhbhai Mandaviya, MP (Rajya Sabha). A large official and business delegation also accompanied the President. Apart from unveiling a statue of Mahatma Gandhi at the prestigious University of Ghana campus, the President also planted a sapling as a symbol of friendship at the Flagstaff House (Presidential Complex). He addressed students and faculty at the University of Ghana and also the India Ghana Kofi Annan Centre for Excellence in ICT. He also addressed an India-Ghana Business Forum and interacted with the Indian community at a reception organized by the High Commission. Three agreements/MoUs were inked during the visit: MoU on the establishment of a Joint Commission; MoU on cooperation between Foreign Service Institute of the Ministry of External Affairs and the Ghanaian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Cooperation and an Agreement for Exemption of Visas for holders of diplomatic and service passports.

The only other earlier VVIP visit from India to Ghana was that of the Prime Minister Shri P. V. Narasimha Rao, accompanied by a high level delegation on 8-9 November 1995 on his return from Burkina Faso.

IAFS-III

Special Envoy to the Prime Minister Shri MohanbhaiKundariya (MOS for Agriculture) visited Ghana from 5-6 July 2015 to deliver PM’s invitation to President of Ghana for the IAFS-III Summit. He called on President Mahama and also met with Foreign Minister Ms. Hannah Tetteh during his visit.

President John DramaniMahama, accompanied by a high-level delegation, visited India to participate in the third India-Africa Forum Summit (October 27-29, 2015) and also had a bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Foreign Minister Hannah Tetteh, who was part of the delegation met with EAM Smt. Sushma Swaraj. Minister of Trade & Industry Dr. EkwowSpioGarbrah also participated in the Trade Ministers Meeting on the sidelines of the Summit.

Major visits from Ghana to India in the past include the visit of President Nkrumah in 1961 and President Limann in 1981. President Rawlings made a stopover in Mumbai on his way from Beijing in 1993, and again visited India in 1997 to attend the funeral ceremony of Late Mother Teresa. In addition, there were several Ministerial visits, including that of the Foreign Minister for the NAM Ministerial Conference in April 1986.

President Kufuor, accompanied by a high level delegation visited India in August 2002. Four bilateral agreements were signed including one which relates to the setting up of a Centre of Excellence for Training in Information Technology in Accra (which became operational in December 2003); and Bilateral Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (BIPPA); Protocol on Consultations between MEA and Ghana's Ministry of Foreign Affairs; and a Cultural and Scientific Exchange Programme. The Vice President of Ghana Alhaji Ali Mahama, led a large Ghanaian delegation to the CII conclave held in New Delhi in March 2008. In April 2008, President Kufuor visited India to participate in India-Africa Forum Summit held in New Delhi.

Vice President John DramaniMahama accompanied by Minister of Trade & Industry Ms. Hanna Tetteh visited India to participate in the CII-Exim Bank Conclave in March 2010. Minister of Youth and Sports, Ms. AkuaSenaDansua visited India in October 2010 as head of the Ghanaian contingent to the XIX Commonwealth Games 2010 in Delhi.

Vice President KwesiBekoeAmissah-Arthur along with Minister of State for Private Sector Development Rashid Pelpuo visited India to attend the World Economic Forum Summit in New Delhi on 4-6 November 2014, jointly organized by World Economic Forum and CII. He also met Vice President Shri Mohammad Hamid Ansari and participated in an interactive session with the captains of Indian Industry. Vice President Amissah-Arthur again visited India in March 2016 for the CII-EXIM Bank India-Africa Conclave, where Ghana was the Focus Country. He was accompanied by the Ministry for Trade & Industry and Deputy Minister for Agriculture.

Rt Hon Mike Oquaye, Snr, Speaker of the Parliament of Ghana accompanied by Hon. Dr. OwusuAfriyieAkoto, Minster of Food &Agriculture participated in the CII-EXIM Bank Conclave in March 2017. The Agriculture Minister also visited India to attend the Annual Meeting of the African Development Bank held in Ahmedabad (20 -22 May 2017). On the sidelines, he had a meeting with Finance Minister Shri ArunJaitley. Former President John Mahama also participated in the African Development Bank Annual Meeting as a special invitee of the AfDB. He briefly met with Hon Prime Minister.

There have been regular Ministerial visits from Ghana to India including that of Ms. Sherry Ayittey, Minister of Environment Science and Technology, in October, 2012; Mr. Clement Humado, Minister of Food and Agriculture, in March, 2013 and Mr. NayonBilijo, Minister of Fisheries & Aquaculture Development, accompanied by Deputy Minister in the Ministry of Finance and senior officials from the Presidency and the Ministries of Energy and Finance respectively who participated in the 10th EXIM Bank - CII Conclave on India-Africa Project Partnership in New Delhi in March 2014.The Minister of Trade & Industry Dr. EkwowSpio-Garbah led a 9-member delegation to the CII Partnership Summit, Jaipur (15-17 January 2015). On the margins of the Summit, he met with Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman, Hon’bleMoS for Commerce & Industry (I/C). Deputy Defence Minister visited Goa for the 6TH DefExpo in March 2016.

There have been regular Ministerial and Official visits from the Indian side too. Shri Anand Sharma, the then Minister of State for External Affairs led a high level delegation to Ghana from 24-26 May 2006 for the CII-EXIM Bank Regional Conclave on India-Africa project Partnership and TEAM-9 Ministerial Meeting. He again visited Ghana in March 2007 to attend the Golden Jubilee Celebrations of Ghana’s Independence; in July 2008 as Special Envoy of Prime Minister; in November 2008 for the inauguration of the Flagstaff House(the Presidential Complex built on a Line of Credit from India) and in January 2009 as Special Envoy of Prime Minister to convey good wishes to the new Government headed by late President John Evans Atta Mills. ShriAnand Sharma visited Ghana as Minister of Commerce & Industry in September 2010 leading the delegation for the India-Ghana CEOs Round Table; and he led a high level official and business delegation to Ghana on the occasion of the hosting of the 'India Show' from 8-10 July 2012. Minister for Overseas Indian Affairs, Shri Vayalar Ravi visited Ghana in February 2010 as part of his visit to African countries. MOS for External Affairs Smt Preneet Kaur visited Ghana on 9-10 August 2012 to attend the funeral service of the late President Atta Mills.

A GOI delegation, led by Shri Sudhir Mital, Secretary (Fertilizer), visited Ghana on 23-28 June 2013 for discussions on India-Ghana Joint Venture Fertilizer Project. A 2-member official delegation from Ministry of External Affairs at Join Secretary-level visited Ghana from 1-4 June 2015 to discuss Developmental Assistance Projects in Ghana. A 3-member EXIM Bank of India team also formed part of the visiting delegation. A combined team from Ministry of External Affairs and National Research Development Corporation visited Ghana in July 2016 for monitoring the progress on the implementation of the Tomato Pilot Research Project. A two-member delegation from MEA led by AS(FA) Dr. Sumeet Jerath visited Ghana from 18-20 April for review of the Pan-African E-network project. A delegation from CSIR India and NRDC led by Secretary, Department of Science & Technology Dr. Girish visited Ghana for the handing over of the tomato pilot research project.

ICWA: A two-day India-West Africa Partnership Conference was organized under the aegis of the Indian Council of World Affairs in Accra from 19-20 January 2017. The Conference saw participation by experts and academics from 9 West African countries apart from Ghana to discuss and share views on various partnership areas covering economic development, energy security, food and agriculture and rising threat of terrorism.

Commercial relations:

Ghana was included as one of the nine West African countries under the GOI’s TEAM 9 initiative launched in 2004. India has been supporting Ghana’s development by providing assistance in setting up projects through provision of Lines of Credit and grants. So far, Government of India has extended Lines of Credit amounting to about US$ 230 million to Government of Ghana for various developmental projects. Some of the projects have been completed while a few are in various stages of implementation. Amongst the recent projects are the India-Ghana Kofi Annan Centre of Excellence for ICT; the Flag Staff House (Presidential Complex); the Pan African E-Network Project and Rural Electrification Project. Two projects under EXIM Bank of India Line of Credit were successfully commissioned in 2016 – Komenda Sugar Plant on 30 March 2016 and Elmina Fish Harvest & Processing plant on 29 November 2016. A Line of Credit facility for supply of 104 fire tenders to Ghana National Fire Services was also completed on 3rd December 2016. Other projects which are in the pipeline are in diverse sectors,inter alia, waste management, railway equipment, agro-processing, supply of potable water etc. Government of Ghana signed a Buyers’ Credit agreement with Exim Bank of India for US $ 398.33 million for the Tema-Akosombo railway line on 22 November 2016.

A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed on 6 July, 2010 between India and Ghana for the setting up a US$ 1.2 billion Joint Venture Fertilizer Project using gas to manufacture fertilizer. However, not much progress happened due to shortage of gas supply.

Hon’ble Rashtrapathiji announced a further financial assistance worth about a million dollars to the India-Ghana Kofi Annan Center for Excellence in ICT. The Center, which is presently run as an autonomous instution under the Ministry of Communications of Ghana, was set up with assistance from India under ‘Aid to Africa’. The Centre is well appreciated not just by Ghana but within the region. An India-Africa Institute of Information Technology (IAIIT), Food Processing Business Incubation Centre, Material Testing Laboratory and Project Arrow for the improvement of postal infrastructure in Ghana under the decisions of India Africa Forum Summits (IAFS- I & II) are at different stages of implementation. Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) and Ghana Standards Authority (GSA) have a working MoU which is under consideration for renewal for a further period of three years from 2016.

The exchange of business delegations in recent years has led to an increase in investments by Indian companies in Ghana in sectors like construction, manufacturing, trading, services and tourism and in areas such as steel, cement, plastics, pharmaceuticals, ICT, agro-processing and agricultural machinery, electrical equipments, chemicals, etc. A number of Indian companies are establishing their presence in Ghana, both from the public as well as from the private sector. From the public sector, Bank of Baroda started operations in Accra in February 2008. It opened its second Branch in Tema in August 2012 and a third Branch in Kumasi, the second largest city in Ghana, on 14 November 2016.

The private sector is represented by eminent companies viz. Tata, Ashok Leyland, Mahindra & Mahindra, Escorts, Larson & Toubro, Bharti Airtel, NIIT, M/s ShapoorjiPallonji& Co., as well as several pharmaceutical companies. Svani Motors, dealers of Mahindra & Mahindra in Ghana, recently announced plans for construction of a modern automobile plaza that would house the assembly plant and a service center. Bajaj Auto Ltd. has partnered with Somoco Ghana (a subsidiary of Mohinani Group of Ghana) to market Boxer motorcycles in the Ghanaian market.

According to Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC) Indian companies have invested in more than 600 projects with total investment of US$ 998 million between September 1994 and September 2014 making India the second largest foreign investor country in Ghana in terms of number of projects and ranked 9th in position according to value of FDI in Ghana. There were 57 projects registered under Indian FDI in 2013.

The CII in partnership with the Association of Ghana Industries (AGI) held the 12th Regional Conclave on India-Africa Project Partnership in June 2010 in Accra. The Conclave saw participation from several West African countries including Nigeria, Ivory Coast, Burkina Faso and Togo. A CEOs’ Roundtable was held in Accra on 3 September, 2010. A 35-member Indian business delegation of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industries (FICCI) participated in the “Business Meet” organized by the Mission in coordination with the Association of Ghanaian Industries (AGI) on 21 February 2011.

Ghanaian Deputy Minister for Health Dr. Victor AsareBampoe visited India at the invitation of the Apollo Hospitals from 6-9th February 2015 to participate in the Apollo Cancer Conclave, Hyderabad. During the visit, a MoU was signed between the Ministry of Health of Ghana and Apollo Hospitals Enterprise Limited to establish tertiary healthcare services in Ghana.

An “India Trade Show” was organized at Ghana International Trade Fair in Accra on 9-11 July, 2012 by FICCI under the auspices of the Government of India and with the support from Ministry of Trade and Industry (Ghana), ECOWAS, Ghana Investment Promotion Centre and Association of Ghana Industries.

The Indian Institute of Foreign Trade (IIFT), New Delhi conducted a week-long Executive Development Programme (EDP) in Accra, in collaboration with the Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration (GIMPA) from 30 September to 4 October 2013. The programme was attended by 65 participants including Government officials, senior executives from several businesses and trade chambers.

A group of 20 Ghaniain weavers & 5 coordinators from Bolgatonga attended a two weeks training programme, on “Design Interventions for Basketry Craft for Empowerment of Craft Women/Artisans of rural Africa” under IAFS-II, at the National Institute of Design (NID), Ahmedabad from 2 – 20 December 2013. A six member team from the National Institute of Design (NID), Ahemdabad, in collaboration with the local partner Aid to Artisan Ghana(ATAG), organized the third in-country Workshop and an Exhibition entitled "Designing the Difference" at the ATAG premises at Accra International Trade Fair Centre from 30 April to 14 May 2014. The 2-day Exhibition was inaugurated by the Second Lady of Ghana, Matilda Amissah Arthur.

An India-Ghana Investment Partnership event was held on 24 March 2015 in Accra. The event brought together prominent local Indian businesses and the local Ghanaian businesses. It was organized by the High Commission with an aim to expand Indian Investment footprint in Ghana. Dr. EkwowSpio-Garbrah, the Minister for Trade & Industry was the Chief Guest for the event and delivered the keynote address.

A multi-sectoral delegation of 36 Indian businessmen visited Ghana from 13-20 April 2015. The visit was organized by the High Commissioner of Ghana to India, who was also part of the delegation. The delegation met with the Vice President of Ghana, the Minister for Trade & Industry, other Ministers and top-ranking government officials. The delegation also toured Ghana to evaluate the investment and business opportunities available.

A CII-led Indian Investment & Business Partnership Mission to Ghana of 20 businessmen from various fields visited Ghana from 7-9 December 2015. The delegation called on the Vice President of the Republic of Ghana H.E. Amissah-Arthur and on the Foreign Minister Ms. Hannah Tetteh on 7th December, 2015. An Interactive Investment & Business event was held at La Palm Beach Hotel on 8 December 2015 The Hon’ble Minister of Trade and Industry Dr. EkwowSpio-Garbrah, who was the Guest of Honour, delivered the keynote address. Highly productive B2B Meetings were held in the post-lunch session.

Bilateral Trade crossed US$ 1 billion mark for the first time in 2011-12. Beginning 2014-15, trade balance has shifted in favour of Ghana. The trade figures for the last six years are-

(in US$ million)

Year

India’s exports to Ghana

India’s Imports from Ghana

Total Trade

Trade Balance

2011-12

800.35

403.67

1204.02

396.68

2012-13

744.12

277.61

1021.73

466.51

2013-14

831.48

370.56

1202.04

460.92

2014-15

680.39

1257.60

1937.99

-577.21

2015-16

623.24

2981.27

3604.51

-2358.03

2016-17

682.27

1938.54

2620.82

-1256.27


(Source: Department of Commerce, Government of India)

Ghana’s main (traditional) exports are gold, cocoa, nuts and timber products. Gold accounted for nearly 81% of the total imports by India from Ghana. India’s major exports to Ghana include pharmaceuticals, agricultural machinery, transport vehicles, electrical equipment, plastics, iron & steel, ethyl alcohol, beverages & spirits, cereals, made-up textiles etc.

ITEC

Ghana has been a beneficiary of India’s assistance in human resource development in developing countries through the Indian Technical and Economic Cooperation (ITEC). Ghana utilized 242 ITEC slots in the FY 2014-15, 267 slots in 2015-16 and utilization for 2016-17 would be full. Ghanaians also filled42 slots under various other schemes, including ICCR scholarships and capacity building courses offered by IIFT and IAFS Plan of Action. The number of ITEC slots to Ghana was increased from 200 in 2013-14 to 250 in FY 2014-15.President Mukherjee announced increase of ITEC slots from 250 to 300 and ICCR slots from 20 to 40 for Ghana during his recent visit. About 50 Ghanaian students are currently studying in India under ICCR's Africa Scholarship Scheme. Six Ghanaian scientists were awarded CV Raman Research Fellowships during 2014.

Cultural relations:

To commemorate 60 years of establishment of diplomatic relations between India and Ghana, the first Festival of India in Ghana –‘Maitri’ was successfully organized from 25th January to 13 March 2017.in collaboration with our Ministry of Culture and Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts of Ghana. The Festival showcased multifaceted aspects of Indian culture with an inauguration on the eve of 68th Republic Day on 25th January at the National Theatre of “Samanvay” – a dance amalgamation by LokChhanda Cultural Unit. The group also performed in Tokarodi, Cape Coast and Kumasi. Food Festival – ‘Spice Route’ was held from 10-16 February at Hotel Kempinski along with a Indian Sufi Music show by Dr. Mamata Joshi Group. A Film Festival screening three popular Bollywood movies was held at India House from 24 -26 February. The concluding ceremony of the Festival of India in Ghana was another classical Indian dance show ‘Saptarang” by Neeru Sabharwal Group from 11-13 March, which gave three performances in Accra, Koforidua and Kumasi. Yoga lecture-cum-demonstrations were also organized as part of the Festival in various locations. The Festival of India in Ghana –‘Maitri’ received a tremendous response and wide publicity.

An 8-member Ghanaian dance troupe of Noyam Dance Institute, Accra, sponsored by the Government of India, participated at the 2nd India Africa Forum Summit (IAFS-II), at Addis Ababa in May 2011.The High Commission celebrated the 150th birth anniversary of Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore with various programmes in Accra (May 2012). A Ghanaian craft artist also participated at the event. A 10-member dance troupe 'NTENTAN' from Ghana participated in the Africa Festival organized by ICCR in New Delhi and Ahmedabad on 14-22 June 2012 at the invitation of the ICCR. A 15-member Indian cultural troupe of the 'Maitreyee Paharee Group' visited Accra on 9-11 July, 2012 and performed at various venues in Accra. A ten-member Dance troupe from the Institute of Ghana Studies of the University of Ghana was part of the cultural programme of the IAFS-III in October 2015. An ICCR sponsored 8-member Rajasthani Folk Dance (Sapera) troupe visited Ghana between 10-17 September 2015. They gave two performances in Ghana – the National Theatre, Accra on 11th September and at Centre for National Culture, Kumasi on 16 September 2015.

From time to time, the Mission organizes festivals of Indian Feature Films (including Children Films) in leading theaters. Mission organized a 3-day film screening event from 2-4 April 2016 at the Silverbird Cinemas which was received well. Earlier, a festival of Indian films was organized at the Silverbird Cinema in Accra on 25-31 January, 2013 to commemorate the 64th Republic Day. The Mission also organizes outreach programmes with local universities, including screening of Bollywood movies. Several Indian films were screened in the Ghana Technology University College, Accra during 2015 and at the Academy City College, Accra. High Commissioner also delivered lectures on India, Indian polity and democracy in several educational institutions.

Pravasi Bharati Diwas (PBD) was celebrated by the Mission on 9th January 2017 in which members of the Indian community in Ghana participated. Hon. PM’s address at the PBD 2017 was screened followed by a question answer session on various issues related to PBD and consular matters. Vishwa Hindi Diwas was organized by the Mission on 10th January 2017 in which children from four local schools participated in Essay, poetry and painting competitions. Mission celebrated 125th Birth Anniversary of B.R. Ambedkar on 14 April 2016 by screening a bio-picture of Babasaheb Ambedkar at a reputed educational institution in Accra. The function was attended by students, members of the Indian community and select dignitaries.

The first International Day of Yoga was celebrated with wide publicity on 21st June 2015. The 2nd International Day of Yoga was celebrated similarly on 25 June 2016. The third International Day of Yoga was celebrated on 17 June 2017 in the foreground of the State House with the Parliament of Ghana as the background for the event. The Hon Minister for Sports & Youth Affairs and a big team from the Sports Ministry participated in the event which was attended by over 600 people that included senior government officials, members of the diplomatic corps, Indian Community and local Ghanaians. Yoga events were also organized at India House, Odorkor Hindu Monastery and in Kumasi. Mission has a Yoga Centre manned by a Yoga teacher deputed by ICCR since March 2016 and regular Yoga classes are conducted three days a week, apart from outreach programmes to promote Yoga.

With the support of the High Commission, a few prominent Indian companies based in Ghana organized a Polo tournament between Accra Polo Club of Ghana and Indian Polo Association, on 26 -27 September 2015 at the Accra Polo Club. Indian team comprising four players was led by Army Major Arjun Patil. Ghanaian Minister of Youth and Sports was the Guest of Honour. Ms. Samia Nkrumah of Convention People’s Party (CPP), the daughter of Ghana’s first President Kwame Nkrumah, gave away the prices. This added a new dimension to the bilateral relationship. Mission organized an International Women’s Day event on 8th March 2017 in coordination with the Indian Women’s Association of Ghana.

2nd October 2015 was celebrated by the Mission by screening films on Gandhi at the Alliance Française, the Roman Ridge School and the Academy City College. The screening elicited considerable interest from students in all the three institutions.

The Constitution Day (26th November) was celebrated by the Mission on 28th November 2015 at the Mission auditorium. A lecturer of Political Science from Academy City College delivered a speech on the salient features of the Constitution of India to a group of Indian origin children, who then read out the Preamble. The second Constitution Day was celebrated on 26th November 2016 by the Mission. A painting and essay competition was organized for children in the age groups of 6 -20, which received a tremendous response. A prominent former Justice of the High Court and Constitutional expert, along with a professor in Constitutional Law shared their views on the Indian Constitution with a lively audience. Prizes were awarded to the children who won the essay and painting competition.

Mission also organized a photo-exhibition to mark the 146th Anniversary of the birth of Sardar Vallabhai Patel as ‘Ekta Diwas” on 31st October 2016.

Indian community:

The Indian community in Ghana is estimated at about 10,000. Some of them have been in Ghana for over 70 years. The business activities of Indians in Ghana have contributed in a major way to Ghana’s economic development. Indian investors are the second highest in Ghana in terms of number of projects. Indian Associations are active in organizing Indian festivities. There are a Hindu temple, a Gurudwara, and a Hindu Monastery in Ghana.

In order to encourage local Indian artistic talent, the High Commission encourages classical music/dance recitals by NRI/PIOs and children from the Delhi Public School in Ghana, at the functions organized by the Mission. Mission actively supports the local Indian Associations – Indian Association; Indian Women’s Association; Gujarati, Tamil and Malayalee associations – through cultural grants. These associations celebrate Diwali, Holi, Onam and other Indian festivals every year, with participation from the Mission. Mission keenly participates in events organized by educational institutions. There is also enhanced outreach by the Mission by way of lectures on India at various Ghanaian universities and academic institutions.

June 2017

Useful Resources

Website: http://www.hciaccra.in/

FacebookPage: https://www.facebook.com/IndiaInGhana/

Recommended Reading references

1.

Death and Pain: Rawlings' Ghana - the Inside Story

2.

A History of Indigenous Slavery in Ghana

3.

Ghana - A Concise History from Pre-Colonial Times to the 20th Century

4.

Selected Speeches of Kwame Nkrumah - Vol. 1 & 2

5.

The Life and Work of Kwame Nkrumah

6.

My First Coup d' Etat (Autobiography of President John DramaniMahama)

7.

The History of Ghana by Roger S. Gocking




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