This was agreed to at a meeting Prime Minister Narendra Modi had with South African President Jacob Zuma in Brasilia on Thursday night on the sidelines of the summit BRICS leaders held with South American leaders. (Agencies)
Both leaders recognized the importance of IBSA as a forum of members who have long established democracies and similarities of views on various matters of international agenda of political and economic consequences.
The dates will be decided in consultation with each other, Dinkar Khullar, Secretary West in the External Affairs ministry told reporters travelling with the Prime Minister on the way back to India.
It was also decided that the meeting of India Africa Forum (IAF) will be held in December in Delhi this year.
During the meeting, Zuma spoke of the long-standing relationship between South Africa and India and the respect Mahatma Gandhi has in his country. Modi also spoke of the regard people of India have for the late anti-apartheid icon Nelson Mandela.
Zuma said that the two countries have a strong engagement in view of the fact that the Indian diaspora is 1.5 million strong in South Africa with the Indian population in Durban being the single largest Indian community outside India.
President Zuma congratulated Modi on his election victory with the Prime Minister returning the compliment to the South African leader on his re-election.
The Prime Minister noted that Mahatma Gandhi's life had created a special link between the two countries and invited South Africa to join in the centenary celebration in January 2015 of Mahatma Gandhi's return to India.
The two leaders pledged to strengthen bilateral relations and work closely in international forums to advance the interests of the two countries.
President Zuma, in particular, sought Prime Minister's help in strengthening small and medium scale industries in South Africa, for which he had recently created a new ministry.
Modi lauded President Zuma's initiative and offered India's full support.
Modi also had an opportunity to interact with eleven South American leaders at the meeting between BRICS and South America hosted by Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff.
This was the first occasion when an Indian Prime Minister had an opportunity to meet so many South American leaders at one place.
On the margins of the meeting, Prime Minister had detailed talks with President Donald Ramotar of Guyana, President Ollanta Humala of Peru and President Desi Bouterse of Suriname.
His meeting with the leaders of Guyana, Suriname and Peru assumes significance in the context of the large presence of persons of Indian-origin (PIOs) in these countries.
There are about 43 percent Indian-origin people in Guyana and 21 percent in Suriname. Ten ministers of Guyana are of Indian-origin.
In his meeting with President Ramotar, Modi discussed the possibilities of enhancing bilateral cooperation. India has strong technical and economic cooperation with Guyana and the two sides discussed ways to take that collaboration further.
India has offered an additional line of credit for new projects in Guyana like in road construction and purchase of passenger ferries, financial details of which were being worked out.
India has a strong hi-tech programme in Guyana which includes training of people in India and providing experts to them, said Secretary West in the External Affairs Ministry Khullar.
They have shown an interest in getting the services of Indian experts in the fields of hydrocarbon and legal affairs, he said. During the meeting, both leaders also reinforced cultural ties.
Modi, in his meeting with the Suriname President, discussed ways to expand cooperation bilaterally.
Suriname has shown interest in developing palm-oil cultivation for which India can give technical cooperation, officials said.
The Prime Minister reiterated India's willingness to expand cooperation with these countries. Indian companies have shown interest in the agricultural and mining sectors.
President Humala of Peru had sought a meeting with Modi during which the two discussed the scope of enhancing bilateral ties.
Peru was visited by Vice President Hamid Ansari last year to participate in the 50th anniversary of diplomatic relations. Bilateral trade between Peru and India is USD 1.2 billion and it is fairly balanced.
India has interest in investment from Peru while the South American nation is willing to promote bilateral trade, officials said. Both leaders discussed the scope of enhancing investment.
The Prime Minister suggested that skills, human resource and agriculture could be areas of cooperation. He suggested that delegations could be exchanged with a target agenda for promoting business ties.
This was agreed to at a meeting Prime Minister Narendra Modi had with South African President Jacob Zuma in Brasilia on Thursday night on the sidelines of the summit BRICS leaders held with South American leaders.