NEW DELHI: In a big endorsement for India’s rising global stature, African Union chairperson Azali Assoumani on Sunday said the country is a “superpower” which is now “ahead of China”.
“India is the 5th superpower in the world so there is enough room for India in Africa. We also know that India is so powerful that it went to space. So we just need to coordinate…India is a superpower in terms of inhabitance, India is ahead of China now,” the AU chairperson said.
His remarks come a day after African Union became the permanent member of the G20 grouping in a move that was strongly backed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Speaking up about the moment when PM Modi hugged him after formally inducting the African Union into the G20 family, the AU chairperson said it was an emotional one for him.
Assoumani said he thought there would be some debate among the nations before the decision but it was announced at the very outset of the summit on Saturday.
“I was about to cry. It was a great emotion for me. Because actually, we thought that there was going to be a debate and then a decision would be taken but at the very beginning of the Summit it was announced that we were a member,” he said.
In his opening remarks at the 18th G20 Leaders’ Summit on Saturday, PM Modi invited the African Union, represented by Assoumani, to take a seat at the table of G20 leaders as a permanent member.
The African Union chairperson expressed his gratitude to the G20 member countries for the historic inclusion of the bloc in the G20 family.
On Sunday, PM Modi held a meeting with Assoumani, congratulating him on the African bloc joining the G20 family.

Taking to his official handle on ‘X’, PM Modi posted, “Had a very fruitful meeting with @PR_AZALI. Congratulated him once again on @_AfricanUnion joining the G20 family. Comoros is vital to India’s SAGAR Vision. Our deliberations included ways to enhance cooperation in areas like shipping, trade and more.”
(With inputs from ANI)

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