India is not competing with China in trade with Africa and is considered a "trusted friend" by the countries of the continent which is "very valuable", Vice President Hamid Ansari said today.
"We are not having the same approach as that of China. Our approach is different.... The Indian approach is not just to give the fish, it is to teach how to fish. So we don't compete with China," he said while returning after attending the 50th anniversary Summit of the African Union in Addis Ababa.
He was replying to a question about India's standing in comparison to China in trade turnover with Africa. While China's trade volume with African countries is estimated at $200 billion annually, that of India is $70 billion. However, Indian investments still exceed that of the Chinese, officials said.
Elaborating on the issue, Ansari said the Indian approach was to ensure capacity building and human resource development in African states.
"We are doing what is required.... A hungry man will eat a fish given to him. But if you can teach the person how to fish, he can fend for himself. The Indian approach is not just to give the fish, it is to teach him how to fish. So we don't compete with China," he said.
Ansari said China has certain obvious resources in terms of its financial capability and "so they do things their way and we do things our way."
"We are not in competition. What needs to be underlined is that at the public level anywhere in the world, people develop their own description. India is a trusted friend (of Africa) and that is very valuable," the Vice President said.