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H.E. Mr. Olushegun Adjadi Bakari, the Republic of Benin’s Minister of Foreign Affairs’, Official Visit to India

From December 16–18, 2023, H.E. Mr. Olushegun Adjadi Bakari, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Republic of Benin, made an official visit to India. Along with other high-ranking officials, H.E. Mr. Gaston Cossi Dossouhoui, Minister of Agriculture, Livestock, and Fisheries, accompanied him.

On December 18, Dr. S. Jaishankar, the External Affairs Minister, and Olushegun Adjadi Bakari, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Benin, met in Delhi. Both leaders discussed enhancing their collaborations in the political, economic, and developmental spheres. They further spoke about cooperation in agriculture, textiles, education, and defence. The Union Minister of State, V. Muraleedharan, also joined Dr. S. Jaishankar. The African Union’s admission as a permanent member of the G20 was particularly appreciated by the Beninese side.

The Minister of Commerce and Industry, Shri Piyush Goyal, was also met by the visiting dignitary. In order to strengthen commercial and investment ties between the two nations, the visiting group met with representatives from the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry (FICCI) and the Confederation of Indian Industries (CII). The current bilateral relations have gained additional momentum as a result of the visit by the foreign minister of Benin to India.

Benin and India enjoy cordial relations that are marked by secularism and democracy. With its multi-party democracy and tolerant, progressive, multi-ethnic, multi-religious culture, Benin is an ideal partner for India, the largest democracy in the world.

Benin collaborates closely with India as a member of multiple international organisations, such as the United Nations. Dr. Boni Yayi, the President of Benin at the time, visited India in March 2009, and Benin unwaveringly supported India’s ambition for a permanent seat in an expanded UN Security Council. Benin pledged support to India in its fight against terrorism, which has emerged as the greatest danger to global peace and security in recent years.

In his capacity as Special Envoy to the Prime Minister, Prof. Ram Shankar Katheria, MoS (HRD), travelled to Benin in September  2015 to personally deliver the invitation letter to the President of Benin for the third India-Africa Forum Summit (IAFS-III), which was set to take place in New Delhi on October 26–30, 2015. Minister Prof. Katheria met Foreign Minister Saliou Akadiri and President Boni Yayi of Benin during the visit.

During then-President of India Ram Nath Kovind’s official visit to Benin in July 2019, a Memorandum of Understanding on Cultural Exchange Programme (CEP) for 2019–23 was signed between India and Benin.