India and South Africa on Thursday signed three Memoranda of Understanding on cooperation in exploration and use of outer space for peaceful purposes, setting up of a Gandhi-Mandela Centre of specialisation for artisan skills and agricultural research, and education.
The agreements were signed after Prime Minister Narendra Modi and South African President Cyril Ramaphosa met on the sidelines of the 10th edition of the Brazil Russia India China and South Africa bloc summit in Johannesburg. Modi is on a five-day, three-nation tour of Africa. He arrived in South Africa on Wednesday from Uganda’s capital Kampala.
“Saluting the enduring legacy of Mahatma and Mandela! Prime Minister Narendra Modi and South African President Cyril Ramaphosa jointly released a stamp commemorating the two iconic personalities,” External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said on Twitter. He added that the two leaders discussed ways to boost ties in trade and investment, agriculture and defence.
Prime Minister Modi said Indian companies would want to invest in South Africa. He, however, said there were some obstacles in terms of work permits and inter-company transfer permits in South Africa. “These are long-standing issues that the prime minister took up,” Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale said, adding that the South African president said he would look into the matter.
Modi on Thursday also held bilateral talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin on the sidelines of BRICS. He said the friendship between Delhi and Moscow was deep-rooted. The two leaders discussed matters of mutual interest like trade, investment, energy, defence and tourism.
“Wide-ranging and productive talks with President Putin,” Modi tweeted. “India’s friendship with Russia is deep-rooted and our countries will continue working together in multiple sectors.”