World Dumps in Africa...India helps build Capacity
"India is different. Most other nations are looking at Africa for dumping their products. India is looking at us for partnerships," Michael Mwaniki Ngaari of the weights and measures department of Kenya's trade ministry told IANS.
He was among 19 middle-level participants from three countries who attended a five-day India-Africa Technology Partnership Programme (IATPP) organised on behalf of the external affairs ministry by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and the Indian Institute of Foreign Trade (IIFT).
The focus of the workshop was on management of international technology transfer for competitiveness and leveraging intellectual property rights for international technology transfer - building capacity in African nations to absorb new technologies.
More than the exposure to new trends in technology, the workshop was an eye-opener for Ngaari.
"We now know what the world is and what is expected from us," said Ngaari, who lives in Nairobi with his wife and three children.
Much thought went into designing the workshop.
"We conducted one month of research on the kind of content we wanted to impart," said Deepak Bhatnagar, head of the IIFT's Centre For International Trade in Technology (CITT).
"Such workshops will further boost the relationship between India and Africa," Bhatnagar added.
Terming the experience "fantastic", Ghana's Romaric Ababio Dankwa (32), who heads IT firm Seedway Services, stressed on translating the learning into practice.
"What we learnt here was beyond our expectations. Most of it was capacity building. I believe each one of us will act as a catalyst, develop strategies and float projects as only strategizing is not enough. We need to back our decisions with action," Dankwa said.
Jessica Adjoa Manuel - also from Ghana - who runs a cosmetics business under the Jessica Black brand, said the response of Indians towards them was very warm and overwhelming.