BEIJING: Competition between India and China in Africa is rising but it doesn’t necessarily result in cutthroat rivalry as their increasing presence in the African continent can be complementary to each other, an official media report said here today.

“Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s recent visit to Africa has drawn great attention globally not only because the trip was his first visit to the continent since he assumed office in 2014, but also due to the increasing focus on competition between China and India in strategic and media circle,” it said.

“As an emerging power, it is reasonable for India to strengthen its bilateral ties with African countries. Nowadays, there are more than two million ethnic Indians living in South Africa alone, with some becoming members of parliament and political leaders who have enormously promoted India in that country and the rest of the continent,” it said.

“Some observers believe that China and India are competing to increase their presence in the continent. It might not be wrong, however, the negative effect of this competition need not be exaggerated too much if we see it in the objective way,” an article in the state-run Global Times said today.

“The common presence of these two countries in Africa doesn’t necessarily mean irreconcilable or cut-throat competition. Since China and India are two emerging powers, their increasing connections with other regions are definitely logical even if competition exists,” it said.

“It would be absurd to predict an absolute competition mode considering that the complementary features between China and India are very obvious as China is good at providing investment and technology while India has been doing well in people-to-people interactions,” it said.

“If India’s interaction with African countries can bring positive momentum to local development, China will also benefit from such moves,” it said adding China and India have important common interests in Africa.

As members of the BRICS mechanism, China, India and South Africa have been keenly pursuing economic cooperation and reconstructing global orders, it said adding that this is one of the key and promising cooperative points for the “elephant” and the “dragon”.