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   Malawi- India Bilateral Relations

The Bilateral relations that exist between Malawi and India are dynamic and cordial. Under the leadership of His Excellency Ngwazi Professor Bingu was Mutharika, President of the Republic of Malawi, relations between Malawi and India have grown from strength to strength.  His Excellency the President visited India on a State Visit in November 2010 where the two countries signed four cooperation agreements.  In addition, the Vice-President of India, Right Honourable Shri M. Hamid Ansari, paid a visit to Malawi in January 2010 and held discussions with Malawi Government officials on how the two countries could further enhance their bilateral relations.  These high level visits are a clear indication that the Government of Malawi views India as an important partner in the arena of socio-economic development.
In addition, relations between India and Africa have been cordial and mutually beneficial for many years.  Under the African Union (AU) and within the framework of the Africa-India Cooperation framework, African countries have benefitted from numerous initiatives and programmes which continue to contribute towards the development of the continent.

From a historical perspective, relations between Malawi and India were established at independence in 1964 after our country gained independence.  Since then, there has been bilateral cooperation in a number of areas such as in agriculture, computer technology, capacity building and more importantly trade and investment.  Because of increased cooperation, Malawi opened a resident Mission in New Delhi in February 2007.

Over the years, India has provided its assistance to Malawi mainly through the Export-Import Bank of India (EXIM Bank), Indian Technical and Special Economic Cooperation (ITEC) and the Commonwealth African Assistance Plan.  Under ITEC, India offers scholarships and short-term training for transfer of technology.  These initiatives continue to assist in the development of Malawi within the framework of the Malawi Growth and Development Strategy (MGDS).

On trade and investment, India and Malawi have a trade agreement.  Furthermore, India has introduced Duty Free Tariff Preference (DFTP) scheme for Least Developed Countries (LDCs) including Malawi.  This initiative is complemented by the progressive relationship between the chambers of commerce and industry of Malawi and India.  Hence, this relationship continues to assist Malawi in the development of her economy through exports to the Indian market.  On investment, Malawi and India are exploring to conclude an Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (IPPA) and a Double Taxation Agreement (DTA).  Once these instruments are in place, we expect an increase in the levels of investment and trade between the two countries.

As an emerging market economy, India has a lot to offer to Malawi in the fields of trade and investment, capacity building, health and also development cooperation assistance.  Furthermore, within the framework of South-South Cooperation, Malawi and India will continue to work together towards a peaceful and progressive global agenda.

At the 2nd Africa-India Forum Summit held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, from 24 to 25 May 2011, the Summit adopted a 32 point declaration, dubbed “Addis Ababa Declaration” which reaffirmed Africa and India mutual desire to expand economic cooperation and trade and investment linkages between the two blocs, in the true spirit of South- South engagement. India pledged its continued support to enhance regional integration, capacity building and human resource development. Malawi will benefit from this support.

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