At an interactive session organized by FICCI, Prime Minister, Republic of Cote d'Ivoire, Mr. Daniel Kablan Duncan, urged Indian investors to cash in on business opportunities in his country. He said that the Ivorian Government had accelerated the pace of reforms for boosting growth; carrying out political and economic governance actions; strengthening regional integration for the consolidation of its position as a regional hub and gateway to the West African sub-region; and developing human capital for the resumption of its place as centre of excellence in training.
Ambassador of India in Cote d'Ivoire, Mr. Dinesh Bhatia in his remarks said that the Indian community in that country which was just about 400-500 till 2010 has jumped to around 1500. India has been actively involved in financing several Ivorian projects. India also provides 60 slots under ITEC programme every year as well as nine ICCR scholarships to help Cote d'Ivoire in capacity building. He offered help to Indian companies aspiring to do business there.
Chairman, Overseas Infrastructure Alliance (India) Pvt. Ambassador V.B.Soni who was invited to deliver a special address at the session said that in the contemporary world as developing democracies India and Africa share similar aspirations. We seek the empowerment of our peoples and betterment of their lives through inclusive socio-economic development and growth.
He listed manufacturing, education, energy & mining as the sectors having tremendous potential for cooperation between India and Cote d'Ivoire. He underlined that as leaders in generic medicines, Indian companies have found opportunities for exports and for investments in a number of African countries. Their price-competitiveness, especially in generic drugs that are crucial to many African countries such as HIV AIDS, anti-retroviral (ARV) and anti-malaria drugs, has made management of these diseases more viable for state health sectors.
Introducing Overseas Infrastructure Alliance (OIA) Ambassador Soni said that it is a project development, execution and management company, with presence in India and Africa. The company builds and delivers essential nation building projects, with expertise in Energy, Agro Processing, Gas Distribution, Transportation Infrastructure, Core Infrastructure, IT &ITes, Water management, Railways, Advisory Services & Healthcare & Distribution. He said that OIA has office and projects in countries like Ethiopia, Mozambique, Tanzania, Republic of Congo, Burkina Faso, Rwanda, Sudan and Maldives. The company is building a diversified range of infrastructure assets worldwide.
Chairman OIA apprised the P.M. of Cote d'Ivoire and the gathering that as a part of Corporate Social Responsibility (C.S.R.) OIA set up of an eye care state-of-the-art facility in the campus of Zewditu Memorial Hospital at Addis Ababa. It is a non-profit venture. The hospital inaugurated recently by Ethiopian President is providing badly needed basic facilities like cataract and glaucoma operation to local population and also to patients from neighbouring countries.