About Us Bilateral Relations

India- Mali Relations


Political Relations:

India and Mali have traditionally maintained friendly relations and have no geo-political conflicts. The Government of India established its Embassy in Bamako in May 2009. Mali followed soon by opening its Embassy in New Delhi in August 2009. During the political and security crisis in Mali and consequent upon a military coup in March 2012, India strongly supported efforts for restoration of constitutional order in Mali and preservation of its territorial integrity. India also contributed US$ 1 million for strengthening of Malian forces at the Donors Conference held in Addis Ababa. After the restoration of democratic order since September 2013, Government of India, while welcoming the development, reiterated its willingness to further strengthening its development cooperation partnership with Mali. India has consistently opposed colonialism and liberally extended developmental assistance under various schemes to Mali over the years. Mali too has been supportive of India’s line on various international issues. The Government of Mali acknowledges India’s contribution and looks forward to further strengthening its relationship with India. Both the countries recognise terrorism as a grave threat to peace and prosperity and agree to cooperation at bilateral, regional and multi-lateral level to combat this menace.

Bilateral Agreements between India and Mali:

  1. Protocol on Foreign Office Consultations (2009)
  2. Agreement on Political, Economic, Scientific, Technical and Cultural Cooperation (2009)
  3. MOU on Cooperation in Geology and Mineral Resources (2012)
  4. Cultural Exchange Programme (September 2016)
  5. MOU on Standards between the Bureau of Indian Standards and Direction Nationale De Industries, Mali (September 2016)

Bilateral Visits:

(1) The President of the Republic of Mali, accompanied by a high level delegation, attended the founding Conference of International Solar Alliance held in New Delhi in March 2018.  In October 2015, the President of Mali, accompanied by a high level delegation, including several Ministers and high level officials, attended the 3rd India-Africa Forum Summit (IAFS-III) in New Delhi at the invitation of the Indian Prime Minister. The First Lady of Mali had earlier visited India in August 2015 to attend the Global ‘Call to Action Summit 2015. She also briefly met the Prime Minister during that visit.

(2) Hon’ble Vice President of India (HVPI), Shri Hamid Ansari, accompanied by Shri Arjun Meghwal, Minister of State for Finance and Corporate Affairs and three Members of Parliament, paid the first high level visit from India to Mali on 29 – 30 September 2016. During the visit, HVPI called on President of Mali, had restricted and delegation level meetings with the Prime Minister of Mali, addressed the National Assembly and interacted with the Indian community in Bamako.

(3) Minister of State for External Affairs (MoS), Mr. M.J.Akbar visited Mali on a bilateral official visit from March 2-3, 2017 and, along with the Foreign Minister of Mali (FM), Mr. Abdoulaye Diop, co-chaired the first ever Joint Commission Meeting between the two countries.

(4) The first India-Mali Foreign Office Consultations were held in New Delhi on 4 November 2019. The Indian delegation was led by Shri T.S Tirumurti, Secretary (Economic Relations) and the Malian delegation was led by H. E. Mr. Boubacar Gouro Diall, Secretary General, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of Mali. The consultations provided an opportunity to review the entire gamut of bilateral relations and to explore new areas for cooperation including trade and commerce, development partnership [projects funded through India’s concessional lines of credit], capacity building training programmes, people to people linkages, defence cooperation and security related issues. The two sides agreed to identify capacity building training programmes related to security and counter terrorism which could be considered for G5 Sahel countries including Mali. The two sides also exchanged views on regional and multilateral issues.

Lines of Credit / Grant / Projects: India has so far extended 7 Lines of Credit (LoCs) worth US$ 303.6 million to Mali mainly in the energy sector. Acquisition of railway coaches, setting up of agro machinery and tractor assembly plant and agriculture and food processing projects have also been completed under LoCs. Work on a major power transmission project from the city of Sikasso to Bamako via Bougouni (for which India has extended LoC of US $ 150 million) is expected to start shortly.

During ISA Founding Conference held in New Delhi in March 2018, three solar projects were selected for financing under LOC - two on bilateral basis and one through ECOWAS Bank for Investment and Development (EBID). Two of these projects were extended Project Preparation Facility and Lines of Credit have been approved for them: (i) Setting up a sustainable village and use of solar photo voltaic technology for irrigation of 2500 ha of agricultural land – US$ 22 million and (ii) Construction of of 59 MW Solar Power Plant in Fana 0 US$ 120 million),.

India has offered to establish a Food Processing Business Incubation Centre in Mali, under the 2nd India-Africa Forum Summit (IAFS-II), at an estimated cost of Rs 1.46 Crore.

Training Assistance:

Sixty slots were allotted to Mali under the Indian Technical and Economic Cooperation Programme (ITEC) during the year 2018-19. For the year 2019-20, the ITEC slots have been increased to 70.

Two Malian military officers had participated in the training programme conducted by the Centre for UN Peacekeeping in Delhi in 2012. Under ITEC Programme, about 15 defence personnel from Mali received training in India.

Under ICCR-Africa Scholarship Scheme, 8 slots are being offered to Mali annually.

Other Scholarships:

  1. Under various initiatives of the India-Africa Forum Summits.
  2. Agricultural scholarships administered through the African Union.
  3. C. V. Raman Fellowship Scheme: 8 slots offered to Mali, 2 have already been availed.
  4. Two Malian military officers have participated in the training programme conducted by the Centre for UN Peacekeeping in Delhi.

Pan-African e-Network Project: The Pan-African e-Network Project, set up by Telecommunications Consultants India Limited (TCIL), had been operational in Bamako. The project remained underutilized due to language problem etc. The next phase of programme in the form of e-VidyaBharati and e-AarogyaBharati (e-VBAB) Network Project to provide free tele-education courses in various academic disciplines and free Continuing Medical Education to doctors/nurses/para-medical staff including free medical consultancy, has been offered to Mali. A MoU between Mali and Telecommunications Consultants India Limited [TCIL] has been signed on 04 November 2019 in New Delhi for Mali’s participation in e-VidyaBharati and e-AarogyaBharati (e-VBAB) Network Project.

Bilateral Trade: Total bilateral trade was US$ 149 million in 2018-2019. Main items of export from India are pharmaceutical products, tractors, motor vehicles, bicycles etc. Main items of import into India are cotton, gold, gum and cashew nuts in shell.  In monetary terms, the value of Indian exports to Mali was 0.04% of India’s total global export during 2016-17.  Mali can make immense use of Indian expertise in sectors such as power, communications, IT, education, mining, agriculture, automobile and pharmaceuticals etc. It is amongst the poorest countries in the world, heavily reliant on external aid. Gold, livestock and agriculture account for almost 85% of Mali’s exports. Mali has a liberal and friendly investment and trade policy. For Indian investors, investment opportunities exist in the field of agriculture (cotton food processing, abattoirs and tanneries), automobiles (two-wheeler segment), mining  and pharmaceuticals (generic drugs).

India has extended Duty Free Tariff Preference (DFTP) Scheme to Mali. While Indian importers are already availing the benefits of this dispensation, greater publicity and use of the facility is needed.

Indian Investment/Indian Community/Malian Investment: Indian commodities, pharmaceutical and light engineering products have a significant presence in Mali that otherwise has an abundance of Chinese / EU products. The number of Indians in Mali is estimated to be around 400. They are mainly in import retail business, mining, power, steel, cement, pharmaceuticals and agro industry sectors.

Mali has no known investment enterprise in India.

Culture: Both countries have a rich cultural heritage. A 2 member cultural delegation visited India during the 3rd India-Africa Forum Summit (IAFS-III) in October 2015 for a musical performance and received great appreciation.

In March 2017, India donated US$ 0.5 million for the reconstruction of the world heritage of Timbuktu which was announced by HVPI during his visit to Mali in September 2016.

An Exhibition hosting Timbuktu manuscripts “Taj Mahal meets Timbuktu” was held at National Museum, New Delhi from 14 May – 6 June 2018.

UN / International Solar Alliance
Mali has been supportive of India’s line on various international issues. Mali ratified the International Solar Alliance Framework Agreement on 2 October 2017.