India and South Africa share long historical relations, dating back to as far back as the fifteenth century. It is alleged, for instance, that it was an Indian, who piloted the Portuguese explorer, Vasco da Gama, from Natal to India in 1498 CE. It was not until the late 19th century, however, that Indians migrated in significant numbers to settle, work, and do business in South Africa, one of whom was Mahatma Gandhi who arrived in South Africa in 1893. Many of the early Indians were brought to work in the country by the British who needed high-quality labor to develop South Africa to European standards. During the colonial period, there were collaborations in the fight for independence between the Indian National Congress (INC) and the African National Congress (ANC) in South Africa. Many Indians also filled some of the top positions in the ANC’s struggle against Apartheid, and since 1994, they have held some of the top party and government positions. As of today, there are over 1.3 million Indians in South Africa. The two countries share a lot in terms of language, democratic politics, similar legal systems, and forms of ethnic diversity. This article focuses on the trade relations between the two countries, indicating the major areas where they have collaborated, and maps the future trajectory of such trade relations.
Modern relations between India and South Africa
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