India-Africa trade to grow nine times by 2012: Assocham

January 7th, 2009 - 8:37 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Jan 7(IANS) Even as India’s exports decline, India-African bilateral trade is projected to grow by over nine times from $26 billion now to $150 billion by 2012, according to an estimate by a leading business chamber. The Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (Assocham), in a report on Africa, projects that in the next four years the continent will have greater business significance and drive two-way trade to over $150 billion.

According to Assocham, bilateral trade grew over five times from $5.2 billion to $26 billion from 2002-03 to 2007-08.

“The governments in African continent have also been encouraging industries to intensify their ties with India because it has already announced Duty Free Tariff Preference Scheme for all LCDs (Least Developed Countries) including Africa so that imports from them become easier and increase by manifold,” said Assocham secretary general D.S. Rawat.

Rawat said the areas which will receive maximum focus in the next four to five years for increased trade include minerals, fuels, gems and jewellery, inorganic chemicals, ores and wood, besides project exports, consultancy, IT, education and healthcare.

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