India-Gabon Ties: Warm and Friendly
The Minister for Economy, Commerce, Industry & Tourism, Republic of Gabon, Mr. Magloire Ngambia meeting the IndianMinister for Commerce and Industry, Mr. Anand Sharma, in New Delhi on February 24, 2011
Mr. Ali Bongo Ondimba, Senior Minister for National Defence of Gabon (the incumbent President of Gabon) visited India in November 2007. He held bilateral discussions with Raksha Mantri (Defence minister), besides visiting some Defence Training Centers and production facilities.
Minister for Mining, Oil, Energy and Hydraulic Resources Mr. Richard Auguste Onouviet and Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs, Cooperation and Regional Integration Mr. Jean Ping visited India in May 2007.
Minister for Mines, Petroleum and Hydrocarbons Mr. Julian Nkoghe Bekale visited India in December 2009 to participate inthe 2nd India-Africa Hydrocarbons Conference held in New Delhi.
Ms. Laure Olga Gondjout, Minister of Communications visited India in May 2010.
Mr. Rajinder Bhagat, Joint Secretary (West), External Affairs visited Gabon on January 20, 2011 and had talks with Mr. M. Paul Toungui, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Gabon.
Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs, Paul Bunduku Latha visited New Delhi from 27-29 March, 2011 to participate in the 7th CII-EXIM Bank Conclave on India Africa Project Partnership.
India’s Economic Assistance to Gabon:
A line of credit of US$ 14.45 Bilateral Ties million was extended in March, 2007 for a housing project in Bikele, Libreville. The project consists of construction of 300houses and 4 amenities.
Another line of credit of US $ 67.19 million has been offered in June 2011 for upgradation etc. of the broadcasting facilities in Libreville.
Six Gabonese officials were selected for short and medium term training courses in India during 2010-11 under ITEC. 75 ITEC slots have been earmarked for 2011-12.
Four Gabonese officials received training in different discipline in India under IA FS-I during 2010-11.
Gabon is one among the first 15 African countries to have implemented the Pan African e-network project. Tele-education, Tele -medicine and VVIP connectivity has been set up in Libreville under this project.
A Vocational Training Centre (VTC)/Incubation Centre (IC) is in the process of implementation in Gabon, under the Plan of Action agreed with the African Union as a result of the first India Africa Forum Summit held in New Delhi in April 2008.
Indian Investment in Gabon:
Oil India Ltd, in partnership with Indian Oil Limited and Marvis Pte Ltd., of Singapore, is conducting oil exploration in Shakthi Block in Gabon.
Airtel has taken over Zain mobile network in Gabon in 2010.
Indian companies e.g. M/s Ramky Infrastructure Ltd. and M/s M3M India Limited have won contracts for development of infrastructure sector in the country.
Trade and Commercial Relations:
Gabon has large oil reserves, mineral as well natural resources. It is the world’s second largest producer of Manganese. Principal items of exports from India to Gabon are meat and meat products, pharmaceuticals, cotton, iron and steel. Imports from Gabon are that of wood and articles of wood, ores,slag and ash.
Total trade between India and Gabon is given below:
TRADE FIGURES (US$ Million)
There are around 160 Indians in Gabon. They are engaged, primarily, in infrastructure projects, trading, and export of timber and metal scrap.