The Third India-Africa Forum Summit 2015. Charting Narendra Modi's Africa Policy

14 March 2016, 1.00 PM - 14 March 2016, 2.00 PM

Simona Vittorini

Room G2, 10 Priory Road

Please note this talk has been postponed from 24 February to 14 March 2016

Global Insecurities Centre Seminar Series Spring 2016 Programme.

This talk will be delivered by Guest Speaker Dr Simona Vittorini from the University of London


During the last ten years, India has exponentially increased its economic, political and developmental involvement in Africa. This has has led to debate inside and outside India as to the new texture and emphases of the relationship between India and African countries. A key question is whether Nehruvian ideological imperatives - central to India-Africa engagements in the past - persist or whether this thinking is now imperilled by economic and realist imperatives. Indeed, the almost ubiquitous post-Cold War liberal discourse can also be seen to be increasingly visible in its engagements. This question has become more timely with the election of Narendra Modi to the head of government in May 2014. Since then, India's foreign policy has taken a visible turn, becoming more dynamic and assertive. Yet, some political observers have stated that Indian foreign policy has been broadly consistent and that changes have been expression of mere rhetoric and pretence and have had little to do with the Prime Minister’s ideological leanings. Others, have instead argued the opposite, believing that Modi will be capable of reshaping the entire political universe of India. 
The third India-Africa Forum Summit - held at the end of October 2015 - provided the opportunity for Narendra Modi to chart India's Africa policy. The paper seeks to use official documents and statements released at the third India-Africa Forum Summit (as well as interviews with staff in Indian government ministries, quasi-state bodies and research institutions on that occasion) to locate continuities and changes in Indian attitudes, imperatives and, importantly, ideological concerns towards Africa and to situate them within broader debates about the direction of India's foreign policy. 

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