Abuja (Nigeria), Nov 26 (IANS) A delegation of the Electronics & Computer Software Export Promotion Council (ESC) of India is here to explore business tie−ups between Nigerian and Indian entrepreneurs in the electronics and ICT (information, communication and technology) sectors.
The 13−member delegation, which would be in the country till Nov 28, will hold talks with businessmen in Lagos and Abuja, according to the Indian high commission.
"During the visit, buyer−seller meetings (BSMs) would be held at Hotel 1960 Classic, Ikeja, Lagos on Nov 26−27, and at Hotel Valencia, Wuse−II, Abuja on Nov 28, 2012," the Indian high commission said in a statement.
Information Technology (IT) is one of the thrust areas identified by the Indian government for enhancing trade between India and Nigeria.
The visit by the ESC delegation would add to efforts by the government through the Indian Technical and Economic Cooperation (ITEC) programme as a bilateral programme of assistance of the Indian government.
The high commission said the visit by the delegation signified India's increased involvement in the development of the IT sector in Africa.
The Africa Union (AU) has also recognised India's contribution to the development of the IT sector. After the Africa India Summit in Addis Ababa last year, the AU said Africa recognised the important contribution made by the Pan−African E−Network Project to the continent's efforts to improve the sector and that this was necessary in order to bridge the digital divide.
The talks are also expected to further enhance bilateral trade which now stands at over $17.3 billion.
Given that the Indian government has targeted to grow trade to Africa to $90 billion by 2015, the level of trade with Nigeria is substantial and explains the interest of the Indian private sector to engage in tie−ups with Nigerian entrepreneurs.
India is now Nigeria's second largest trading partner.
(Francis Kokutse can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)