Vol. 5, No. 1 (2009): 1–31.
The establishment of the Diplomatic House in Nigeria in 1958 (two years prior to Nigerian independence) by India laid the foundation for what was to become solid, warm and concrete bilateral relations between India and Nigeria. The subsequent diplomatic and commercial visits between officials of the two countries crystallised and concretised their cooperative ties regarding political, economic and socio-cultural issues. This paper examines the politico-diplomatic, socio-cultural and economic relations between India and Nigeria. Using a historical approach, the paper argues that although in economic terms the balance of trade is in favour of Nigeria due to increasing importation of Nigeria’s crude oil into India, Indian investment activities in Nigeria have exemplified what might be termed an unequal relationship in which India has an edge over Nigeria. Nevertheless, in view of the magnitude of the cordial relations between the two countries, their development potentials and some socio-political and cultural commonalities, they stand a very good chance of further solidifying and enriching their interactions with regard to several important issues, such as the development of democratic institutions and the redefinition of economic relations between the two states. This, the paper argues, would not only strengthen their political and economic relations, but also bring mutual benefits.
Sulaiman Balarabe Kura is a lecturer with Department of Political Science, Usmanu Danfodiyo University, Sokoto, Nigeria. He was a recent Commonwealth Scholar and obtained his PhD from the University of Birmingham, UK. He has wide interest in political parties, African politics, development studies and international relations. Sulaiman Kura’s recent publication include “Towards ‘Reinventing Government’: The Changing Perspectives of Democratic Governance for Development”, Public Administration and Development, Vol. 28(234-238), 2008; “African Ruling Parties and the making of Authoritarian Democracies: Extending the Frontiers of Social Justice in Nigeria”, African Journal of Conflict Resolution, Vol. 8, No. 2, 2008; “Democracy, Human rights and rule of Law in Nigeria” in I. S. Ogundiya and A. O. Lanre (Eds.) State and Civil Society Relations in Nigeria (Ibadan: OFF Publishers), 2009. Also a forthcoming co-edited book with IMB Zagga and A. M. Wali (2009) Governance and Islam in Nigeria.