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Ambassador’s Remarks at the Trade Promotion Event (Mahajanga, 15 May 2024)

Posted on: May 15, 2024 | Back | Print

Ambassador’s Remarks at the Trade Promotion Event

(Mahajanga, 15 May 2024)

Governor of Boeny Region H.E. Mr. Mokhtar Salim Andriantomanga,

Prefect of Mahajanga Mr. Herimaharo Zo Randrianarivony Tokifaharana,

President of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Boeny Region Mr. Mourad Eustratiou,

Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

Namaste, Salama, Good Afternoon. Thank you for joining us in today’s event for promoting trade-economic cooperation between India and Boeny Region. I am glad that this event is taking place in the beautiful city of Mahajanga, which enjoys vibrant ties with India.

2.   At the outset, I would like to briefly describe the remarkable progress made by India over the past 76 years of its Independence. India has come a long way from being a poor and underdeveloped country in 1947 to now become the world’s 5th largest economy and its fastest growing major economy. During the Covid-19 pandemic, India had administered 2.2 bn doses of vaccine to its own nationals and also exported 300 mn doses to about 100 countries across the world. Last year, India became the fourth country in the world to make a soft landing on the Moon and an Indian spacecraft “Aditya- L1” was placed into a halo orbit in January this year, to observe the Sun from a distance of 1.5 million km from the Earth. India is home to the world’s third largest start-up eco-system, with more than 110 Unicorns, i.e start-up companies each worth more than US$ 1 bn. Last year, India’s Unified Payments Interface (UPI) platform had witnessed more than 110 billion transactions, which accounted for about 46% of the global digital payment transactions. 

3. I am glad to note that India-Madagascar bilateral trade has grown rapidly in recent years, amounting to more than US$ 650 mn in FY 2022-2023. Top exports from India to Madagascar were rice, petroleum products, wheat flour, pharmaceuticals etc while major imports from Madagascar were cloves, cow peas, cocoa beans, vanilla, essential oils, graphite, nickel etc. I would like to encourage the businesses from Boeny Region to take advantage of India’s Duty Free Tariff Preference Scheme for 98.2% of the tariff lines from Madagascar.

4.   Now, I would like to briefly touch upon a few sectors which could help to further strengthen trade-economic cooperation between India and the Boeny Region:

Agriculture: You might be aware that India is among the largest producers and exporters of agricultural products in the world. India is the largest producer of milk and the second largest producer of rice, fruits and vegetables. I am glad to note that Madagascar had exported cloves worth about US$ 100 mn to India in FY 2023-24. There is scope for further increasing trade between India and Boeny Region in rice, millets, vegetables, cocoa, vanilla, essential oils etc.

Fisheries: With a coastline of more than 7500 km, India is among the largest fish and shrimp producing countries in the world. Fisheries sector supports the livelihood of more than 30 mn people in India. As fellow developing countries, with a growing demand for affordable sources of protein and minerals, fisheries sector offers opportunities for cooperation between India and Madagascar.

Mining: Both India and Madagascar are endowed with rich mineral resources. India is one of the largest producers of iron ore, steel, coal etc and one of the largest importers of gold, diamonds, precious stones etc. With the growing emphasis on infrastructure development and renewable energy in our countries, there is a great potential for enhancing cooperation between India and Madagascar in the mining sector. Embassy stands ready to work with the relevant agencies to facilitate sustainable development of mineral resources in Boeny region.

Tourism: India, with its rich geographical and cultural diversity, is among the major tourist destinations of the world. Last year, India had attracted more than 9 million tourists from across the world while about 27 million Indian nationals visited foreign countries. India is also increasingly becoming a destination for medical and wellness tourism, including for the people of Madagascar. I am confident that tomorrow's special Yoga session in Magajanga will help to promote greater tourism flows between India and Boeny Region.

5. In conclusion, I would like to affirm that as a close neighbour and fellow member of the Global South, India stands ready to share its developmental experience with Madagascar. Embassy will work closely with Government of Madagascar, the Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry other relevant agencies to realize the potential for cooperation in trade, technology and tourism between our two countries. Thank you once again for joining us in today’s event!