India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi met South African President Cyril Ramaphosa to discuss matters on bilateral ties across sectors including trade and investment, information technology and defence.

External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar  said: “Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Cyril Ramaphosa discussed expansion of our relationship in trade and investment, agriculture and food processing, IT, defence and people-to-people contacts.”

Three Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) were signed after the meeting. According to The Hindu, the MoUs are based on “on cooperation in exploration and use of outer space for peaceful purposes, the setting up of a Gandhi-Mandela Centre of specialisation for artisan skills, and agricultural research and education.”

Raveesh Kumar said in a tweet: “Kicking off a series of bilateral meetings on the sidelines of BRICS! PM Narendra Modi meets the host South African President Cyril Ramaphosa.”

During the meeting, President Ramaphosa  exclaimed that “India-South Africa relations may be new in terms of re-establishment of diplomatic relations but are in fact very deep-rooted in history.” This year, India and South Africa are celebrating 21 years of strategic partnership. “India and South Africa are proud inheritors of legacies of Mahatma Gandhi and Nelson Mandela,” Kumar added.