India offers Tanzania expertise in natural gas sector

RSTV Bureau

Tanzania-visit-PM-PresidentIndia on Friday offered its expertise to Tanzania in development of its potentially rich natural gas sector and decided to extend e-tourist visa to people of the African nation even as the two countries signed eight MoUs to expand engagements in diverse areas.

During extensive talks Prime Minister Narendra Modi had with Tanzanian President Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete, both the countries also decided to establish a Joint Working Group to strengthen cooperation in counter terrorism.

The MoUs signed included a loan agreement between Exim Bank and Tanzanian government on a line of credit for USD 268.35 million for extension of a pipeline project and cooperation in the field of hydrology, tourism and agriculture.

“Terrorism in our respective regions is a concern for both countries. We have agreed to establish a Joint Working Group to strengthen our cooperation in counter terrorism,” PM Modi said during a joint media interaction with Kikwete.

In the talks, Modi was assisted by a high-level delegation which included External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj.

The Prime Minister said he has conveyed to Kikwete that India will soon extend e-tourist visa scheme to Tanzanian tourists.

The Tanzania President thanked India for its continued assistance to his country and said both the nations have decided to take the relationship to the next level.

Calling India a deserving nation for permanent membership of the UN Security Council, Kikwete said his country will continue to work with other African countries to back New Delhi’s candidature. Kikwete is the first Head of State from Africa on a State visit to India after the NDA government came to power.

The PM Modi said ways to enhance cooperation in the maritime sector and ocean economy figured in the talks, noting that both the countries have a common interest in maritime security in the Indian Ocean region.

“We are ready to expand cooperation in counter-terrorism and maritime security,” he said.

Talking about trade ties, PM Modi said he offered India’s cooperation in the development of the potentially rich natural gas sector in Tanzania.

Holding that there is huge scope to expand trade cooperation, PM Modi urged the Tanzanian President to open up more sectors for investments, saying Indian investors are ready to invest more in that country.

“Our trade of over USD 4 billion is heavily in India’s favour. I urged President Kikwete to open up more sectors for investments and exports,” he said.

The Tanzanian President sought more investment from India and assured full assistance and security to the investors.

India is the largest trading partner of Tanzania in Africa with bilateral trade in 2013-14 being more than USD 4 billion.

Apart from trade relations, India is also the important destination for Tanzanians seeking high-quality health care and education.