Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal on Thursday interacted with 15 ambassadors from the African region for strengthening trade and investment ties with India.
He said India is open to free trade agreement (FTA) negotiations bilaterally or individually with African countries or Africa as a whole.
The minister reiterated that this is the beginning of a new engagement and reaffirmed that India would act as a trusted partner to expand trade, commerce, business, investment and opportunities between the two nations.
During the interaction with the ambassadors, Goyal said that India and Africa share remarkable friendship across decades and have the potential of becoming the powerhouse of the future.
The event was aimed at fostering closer economic cooperation, enhancing trade relations and exploring areas of collaboration between India and Africa.
"India and Africa share remarkable friendship across decades and have the potential of becoming the powerhouse of future," Goyal said on the occasion.
The minister emphasised on Prime Minister Narendra Modi's commitment towards making Africa a top priority and deepening India's engagement with Africa on a sustained and regular way.
He encouraged the heads of missions to work in solidarity and extended a hand of friendship for the growth of the African and Indian sub-continent.
The event witnessed the participation of 15 ambassadors from key African nations namely Algeria, Botswana, Egypt, Ghana, Republic of Guinea, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Morocco, Rwanda, South Africa, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda and Zimbabwe.
It provided a unique platform for diplomatic representatives to engage in fruitful discussions, strengthen bilateral ties, and forge new partnerships for mutual growth and development, official sources said.
India and Africa share a long-standing history and a strong cultural bond, Goyal further said on the occasion.