Africa’s priorities would continue to be the paramount factor in India-Kenya bilateral cooperation. This emerged during the Third Session of Kenya-India Joint Commission Meeting in Nairobi, where the focus was on maritime security, Indo-Pacific, fight against terrorism and Big Four Agenda of the African nation.
The two countries also emphasized on the need for affordable COVID-19 vaccines and treatment for all. A joint statement issued at the end of discussions, stated the two sides called for joint efforts to not only combat the disease but to also consolidate economic cooperation during the pandemic and post-Covid-19 period.
India and Kenya are Maritime neighbours
In the current geo-political context, as Maritime neighbours, the relationship acquires a greater salience. Kenya is going to play a critical role in New Delhi’s Indo-Pacific Strategy.
As reported in Financial Express Online earlier, both countries recognized the importance of greater security, safety and prosperity of the Indian Ocean Region. And discussed in detail about the security situation in the Indo-Pacific Region and the Horn of Africa.
Also the two sides expressed concern over growing radicalization and the increase in international terrorism and violent extremism in some parts of Africa and Asia. At the end of the meeting it was agreed by both countries that institutions on both sides will work towards expanding cooperation in dealing with terrorism in all its form.
According to Prof Ajay Dubey, Director, Institute of Advanced Studies, JNU, “The visit of the external affairs minister Dr S Jaishankar to Kenya underlined and demonstrated the new approach of Modi government to engage its African partner at highest level, on regular basis and try to engage them under their own priorities.”
“India shared its concern of militarization of Indian Ocean Region (IOR), increasing radicalization in Africa and Indian sub-continent and the need to have bilateral and multilateral cooperation to counter them including through initiative emerging in Indo-Pacific regions,” Prof Dubey opines.