India-Nauru: Bilateral Brief India-Nauru: Bilateral Brief

High Commission of India
Canberra
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India-Nauru Bilateral Relations

1. Historical Background: Bilateral relations with Nauru are cordial and friendly. India’s is a strong development partner, and its assistance is well recognised in Nauru. India first proposed for Nauru’s independence in the UN in early 1960s that was supported by the then USSR. Hence, Nauru has special regard for India.

Indian High Commissioner to Australia is concurrently accredited to Nauru since 2 August 2021. Resident Mission of Nauru in India has been established in 2022 and Ms. Marlene Moses is the first resident High Commissioner of Nauru in New Delhi.

2. High-Level Visits/ Exchanges
i. President Kinza Clodumar visited India in April 1998 to attend the First Assembly Meeting of the Global Environment Facility (GEF).
ii. President Marcus Stephen visited India in October 2010 for Commonwealth Games, hosted in New Delhi.

iii. Forum for India-Pacific Island Cooperation (FIPIC-I): Prime Minister Modi hosted the First Summit of Forum for India-Pacific Islands Cooperation (FIPIC-I) in Fiji on 19 November 2014. Nauru was led by President Baron Waqa.

iv. Second Summit of Forum for India-Pacific Island Cooperation (FIPIC-II): Delegation led by President Baron Waqa visited India to attend FIPIC-II Summit in 2015.

v. India organized the India-Pacific Islands Sustainable Development Conference (IPI-SDC) in Suva, Fiji on 25-26 May 2017, which was hosted by Gen. (Dr.) V.K. Singh, Minister of State for External Affairs (Retd.). President Waqa led the Nauruan delegation to the Conference.

vi. Interaction with PSIDS at New York: On the sidelines of the UNGA in 2019, Prime Minister Modi held an interaction, the first of its kind, with the leaders of the Pacific Small Island Developing States (PSIDS), including Nauru.

vii. International Solar Alliance: Nauru is a Founding Member of the International Solar Alliance (ISA). Former President Waqa participated in the Founding Conference of the ISA held in New Delhi on 11 March 2018. During the 3rd General Assembly of the ISA held virtually on 14 October 2020, Fiji and Nauru were elected as Vice Presidents for the Asia-Pacific region.

viii. Third Summit of Forum for India-Pacific Island Cooperation (FIPIC-III): Delegation led by President Russ Kun visited Port Moresby to attend FIPIC-III Summit in 2023.

3. Ministerial Visits from India
In a historic first Ministerial visit from India to Nauru, Dr. Subhash Bhamre, Minister of State for Defence, visited Nauru on 16-18 May 2018 and attended the 50th anniversary of Nauru’s Constitution Day as Chief Guest.

Dr. Rajkumar Ranjan Singh, Minister of State for External Affairs and Education paid an official visit to Republic of Nauru from 11-15 December 2022. He called on President Russ Joseph Kun MP and they reviewed the entire gamut of bilateral relations. MoS held meetings with key Cabinet Ministers of Nauru. He inaugurated Waste Management Unit in RON Hospital and visited other projects funded by Government of India, including Mahatma Gandhi Center for Excellence in IT (MG-CEIT) and Sea Wall project.

4. Ministerial Visits from Nauru
i. Hon. David Adeang, Minister for Justice, Border and Control visited India on 23-25 October 2013 to attend the Second High Level Meeting (HLM) on South-South Cooperation for Child Rights in Asia and the Pacific in New Delhi.

ii. On 29 June-2 July 2014 Hon. David Adeang, as Vice-President, led a 3-member delegation, to India to strengthen cooperation in IT and Tourism sectors. During the visit, he met Chief Minister and the Minister of Tourism of Kerala.

iii. On 7-17 February 2016, Minister of Justice Hon. David Adeang and Chairman of Eigigu Holding David Aingimea, attended Distinguished Visitors Programme (DVP) for Pacific Islands Countries, hosted by India.

iv. Minister for Education & Training Hon. Richard-Hyde Menke participated virtually in the Education Minister’s Session of Voice of Global South Summit, chaired by Education Minister Shri Dharmendra Pradhan, on 13 January 2023.

v. Minister for Climate Change, Agriculture and Infrastructure, Hon. Rennier Gadabu visited India and met with Minister of State for External Affairs Dr. Rajkumar Ranjan Singh on 24 January 2023.

5. Commercial and Economic Relations: Bilateral trade figures of the last four financial years (1 April-31 March) are as under:


Year

Exports

Imports

Balance of Trade

2022-23

0.30

0.03

0.27

2021-22

0.31

23.28

-22.97

2020-21

0.10

0.05

0.05

2019-20

0.14

0.07

0.07

2018-19

0.53

0.16

0.37


(Source: DoC, Government of India) in US$ Million)

6. Phosphate Mines: Nauru was a major supplier of phosphate to India. Nauru invested in Paradeep Phosphates Ltd., a joint venture between India and Nauru.
80% of phosphate in Nauru has been mined and only secondary mining is possible. Minister Aaron Cook, M.P, Minister for Ronphos, Nauru Rehabilitation Corporation and Nauru Utility Corporation, visited India on 2-8 March 2017 and met with CEO, Gujarat State Fertilizer Company to explore the possibility of sale of Phosphate to India.

In 2021-22, there has been a jump in imports of Calcium Phosphates from Nauru, constituting the major imports from Nauru.

7. Health Cooperation in the wake of COVID-19 pandemic
India provided US$ 1 million to support Nauru’s response to Covid-19 under GoI’s assistance through the India-UN Development Partnership Fund, which included hospital Waste Management Unit, the first of its kind in the Pacific region, a mobile mortuary unit, six dialysis machines and Covid19 supplies.
India gifted 10,000 doses of Made in India Covishield (AstraZeneca) vaccines to Nauru on 8 April 2021. Following Covid-19 outbreak in 2022, at the request of Government of Nauru, GOI donated 7,000 Made in India Covid vaccines on 25 August 2022. Further, at the request of Government of Nauru, GOI donated 8,000 Made in India COVOVAX vaccines on 13 April 2023

Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for implementing mutual recognition of COVID19 Vaccine Certificates was signed on 30 March 2022.
Government of India gifted anti-Tuberculosis medicines to Nauru in January 2022.

8. Development Partnership
8.1. Grants and projects: India has provided development assistance to Nauru through bilateral Grant-in-Aid programme as well as through India-UN Development Partnership Fund (India-UNDPF). These assistance projects include, Construction of Government expatriate employees apartment (2010-2011); Grant for Conversion of Menen Hotel Rooms to self-contained units for expatriates; Construction of Sea Wall (2015-16); Procurement of Mahindra vehicle for Nauru Parliament (2017); Uniform for Nauru Police (2017-2018); Provision of 22 Mahindra SUVs (2018-2019). In addition, ). a Disability Awareness Campaign was conducted by Indian doctors in 2017 and Four solar women engineers (mamas) from Nauru were trained as part of the Solar electrification in the PICs project.

8.2. At the request of Government of Nauru, the Government of India, provided financial assistance of US$ 70,000 for opening Nauru’s Resident Mission in New Delhi.

8.3. Line of Credit: A team of Water and Power Consultancy Services (India) Limited (WAPCOS) visited Nauru in 2018 and prepared a report under the Project Preparation Facility of EXIM Bank for land rehabilitation projects.

8.4. Human Resource Development: Capacity development and training courses are offered to Nauru under Ministry of External Affairs’ ITEC programme. Two diplomats from Nauru attended the training for diplomats of Pacific Island countries organised by the Foreign Service Institute in Nadi, Fiji in May 2015 and one diplomat participated in the 62nd Professional Course for Foreign Diplomats (PCFD) held at Foreign Service Institute, New Delhi from 27 July-26 August 2016. One diplomat from Nauru participated in the 70th Professional Course for Foreign Diplomats (PCFD) course, organised by Sushma Swaraj Institute of Foreign Service (SSIFS) during 13-31 March 2023. Three diplomats from Nauru also attended 3rd Special Course for Diplomats from Pacific Island Countries at SSIFS during 20 February-3 March 2023. Three ITEC trainees from Nauru participated in an interaction with Hon. PM Modi, on the sidelines of FIPIC-III on 22 May 2023.

8.5. Mahatma Gandhi Centre of Excellence in Information Technology (MG-CEIT): An MoU for setting up the Mahatma Gandhi Centre of Excellence in Information Technology (MG-CEIT) was signed on 24 May 2017 during the India Pacific Islands Sustainable Development Conference (IP-SDC) at Fiji. MG-CEIT offered training on Office Automation, Data Communication& Networking, Web Technologies. More than 394 Nauruan students have received training at the CEIT.

9. Culture: Prasar Bharati gifted programmatic content on India for telecast in all the Pacific Island Countries, including in Nauru. ICCR-sponsored cultural troupes performed in Nauru in 2015, 2016 and 2017. At the request of Nauruan President, an ICCR-sponsored ‘Centre-Stage’ Bollywood Dance Group performed in Nauru during 50th Anniversary of Nauru’s independence on 30-31 January 2018. On 23 June 2021, IDY celebration was inaugurated by the President of Nauru, H.E Lionel Rouwen Aingimea, followed by reading of Hon. Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s message and demonstration of Common Yoga Protocol. At the request of Nauru, an ICCR Dance troupe, performed at the celebrations of Nauru’s 55th Independence Day on 31 January 2023.

10. Indian Expats: Directly recruited Indian expatriates (around 20) have held positions in Nauru and their services have been appreciated by Government of Nauru. Mr. Sasikumar Paravanoor is presently working as Principal Secretary to the President of Nauru. Mr. Sanjeev Sharma worked earlier for long period as an Adviser to the Speaker.

11. Support for India’s International Candidatures: Nauru has been supportive of Indian candidatures in multilateral fora and supports India’s candidature of Non Permanent membership of United Nations Security Council (UNSC) 2028-29.


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