INDIA’S FUTURE WITH LATIN AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN

Ananta Aspen Centre  |  

Ambassador Bhojwani referred to the lack of consciousness within India of the reality of LAC. Its cities are not further than North American destinations. Unfamiliarity with Spanish and Portuguese, even in India’s academic institutions, hampers independent, deeper and objective assessment of the potential of LAC. More official patronage is required to promote the relationship. The Mexican Ambassador outlined the historical connections and deepening economic relations, particularly with Mexico. Latin America seeks closer ties with India as an emerging power. PM Modi’s visit to Brazil in July 2014 was an important starting point. Despite the Indian diaspora in the Caribbean and Panama, economic links are greater with other LAC countries. There are 66 Indian companies and joint ventures in Mexico and 13 Mexican companies in India. The Brazilian Ambassador said the relationship went beyond trade and investment. Business will find solutions to problems it faces. Governments need to facilitate where necessary and focus on social inclusion, poverty alleviation, essential technologies and techniques for common problems. He referred to India’s strong relations with Brazil and recent meetings by the Foreign and Agriculture Ministers of Brazil in India. Minister of State V K Singh outlined the government’s interest in LAC, pointing out his own recent and earlier visits to that region. Political relations are excellent, and economic relations with India are growing. India offers hundreds of technical scholarships to LAC every year. He stressed the need for more steps to realize the full potential that exists. An Action Plan is required for the region. The audience, which included Heads of Mission and diplomats from several LAC countries, commented on the ethos of the region, the political evolution, with reference to the traditional presence of the US and Europe, and the growing importance of India in this context. They sought more and better diffusion of cultural and academic activities and offers from Latin America in India.

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