India offers $125 million lines of credit to Zambia (Second Lead)January 6th, 2010 - 7:39 pm ICT by IANS
Lusaka, Jan 6 (IANS) India Wednesday offered lines of credit totalling $125 million to Zambia, even as both countries agreed there was need to reinvigorate ties to reflect changed times.
On the second day of his visit to Zambia, the first by an Indian leader in two decades, Vice President Mohammed Hussain Ansari held formal discussions with George Kunda, the Zambian vice president. He also called on President Rupiah Banda.
After the glitter of the state banquet, it was time to get down to business - starting with an agreement signed between Exim Bank of India and the Zambian government to extend $50 million in concessional terms for the construction of the Itezhi-Tezhi Hydropower project.
“This project is designed to generate 120 mega watt of energy which will contribute to the electricity sector (in Zambia),” external affairs ministry secretary (West) Vivek Katju told reporters.
The Itezhi-Tezhi project is being implemented by a joint venture company formed by Zesco and Tata Africa Holdings. “The $50 million will go to Zesco’s equity participation in the project,” said Katju.
Further, India has also extended another $75 million of line of credit for a period of two years to be used for social sectors. “We now await proposals from the Zambian government,” he said. Besides, grant of $5 million was also offered for investment in sectors like health and education.
At the 2008 India Africa Forum Summit, India had extended lines of credit of $5.4 billion for a period of four years. Out of that, $1 billion has already been utilised.
Katju pointed out that as all lines of credit had some characteristics, so were India’s - which meant that “85 percent of the material, equipment had to be sourced from India”.
According to Katju, the meeting between the two vice presidents was characterised by “extraordinary warmth”, where both leaders also mentioned historical ties from the anti-colonial struggle.
“On the occasion, the Zambian vice president spoke about inspiration from Mahatma Gandhi’s non-violence struggle. But, there was also recognition that times have changed,” he said, adding that both felt need to “reinvigorate and reenergise” relations.
The Indian diplomat said that joint commission meeting will be held soon so that full agenda can be worked out for a fuller engagement. The relations were being focused in three areas of cooperation at the bilateral, Pan-African and multilateral level.
“At the bilateral level, the Zambian leadership was interested in tapping India’s potential in human resources development,” he said.
While Ansari held discussions, his wife, Salma Ansari, made a visit to a charity project run by the Missionaries of Charities in Lusaka.
On Thursday, Ansari is scheduled to meet with Zambia’s first president, the legendary Kenneth Kaunda, who was a close friend of Indian prime minister Indira Gandhi, before leaving for the second leg of his tri-nation journey to Malawi and then Botswana.
- India signs $50m loan, offers $75m more to Zambia (Third Lead) - Jan 06, 2010
- Ansari meets Zambian leaders, two countries sign bilateral pact - Jan 07, 2010
- Vice President leaves on visit to three African nations - Jan 05, 2010
- Tata Africa to double turnover in two years - Jan 08, 2010
- Indo-Zambian ties should progress to exploit enormous opportunities of cooperation: Ansari - Jan 06, 2010
- Ansari begins tri-nation Africa trip with Zambia Tuesday - Jan 04, 2010
- Old Zambian warhorse wants India's help in fight against AIDS - Jan 07, 2010
- Vice-President arrives in Zambia on three-day visit - Jan 05, 2010
- Vice-President Ansari calls on ex-Zambian President Kaunda - Jan 07, 2010
- Indian vice president arrives in Zambia - Jan 05, 2010
- Vice-President Ansari leaves for Malawi - Jan 07, 2010
- India, Zambia toast growing trade and investment ties (Lead) - Jan 06, 2010
- Private sector to lead Indian investment in Africa, says vice president - Jan 12, 2010
- India's private sector will power Africa thrust: Vice President (Lead) - Jan 12, 2010
- India, Zambia promise to strengthen trade ties - Jan 06, 2010
Tags: africa forum, africa holdings, colonial struggle, electricity sector, equity participation, exim bank of india, external affairs ministry, formal discussions, joint venture company, ministry secretary, mohammed hussain, rupiah banda, secretary west, social sectors, state banquet, summit india, vice presidents, vivek katju, zambian government, zesco