Vastavam web: President Ram Nath Kovind today arrived here on the first leg of his four-day visit to Djibouti and Ethiopia, his maiden trip abroad since taking office.The president, who is the first Indian leader to visit Djibouti, was received by Djiboutian Prime Minister Kamil Mohamed at the airport here.Press Secretary to the President Ashok Malik has said that Djibouti is an important Indian Ocean partner country with whom India’s bilateral trade stands at USD 284 million in 2016-17.
“The president is looking forward to the visit. He recognises that the Africa and Indian Ocean region are central to Indian foreign policy. That is why this region was chosen as his first foreign visit,” Malik said.India has extended a line of credit of USD 49 million to Djibouti, mainly for constructing a cement plant. It is a strategically located country just off the Gulf of Aden.India’s bilateral trade with Ethiopia in 2016 was nearly USD 1 billion. The country is among the top three foreign investors in Ethiopia with an approved investment of 4 billion dollars.In both the countries the president will also interact with the members of the Indian community.