The Indian High Commissioner to Ghana, H.E Rajinder Bhagat has disclosed that since the inception of the Indian Technical and Economic Cooperation (ITEC) programme in 1964, the country has provided technical assistance worth more than $2billion to developing countries including Ghana.
He added that India spends over $12million annually on ITEC activities which have six components namely training, project related activities (feasibility studies and consultancy services), deputation of experts abroad, study tours, donation of equipment and aid for disaster relief.
The entire expenditure for training, including to and fro airfare, tuition fees, accommodation and living expenses is met by the Government of India, he told a well-attended gathering at Indian House to mark ITEC Day in Accra on Friday.
The High Commission celebrates ITEC Day every year to mark this milestone in its technical and economic cooperation programme and to celebrate international friendship and south-south cooperation.
ITEC Day provides a platform to all ITEC alumni to come together and share their experiences of learning, working and living in India. These interactions, Mr Bhagat noted provide the High Commission and other stakeholders of the programme useful feedbacks about the programme and help in making the courses more productive and result oriented.
Ranging from short term courses of couple of weeks duration to Diplomas and Masters Degrees of one to two years duration, ITEC courses cover diverse fields including agric and agro-processing, entrepreneurship development, tool design, small business creation, tele-medicine, energy promotion of rural industries, and information technology.
Ghana has been one of the major participant countries under the ITEC scheme. ITEC slots for Ghana have been increased to 125 from 110 for the year 2011-12. During the financial year 2011-12, Ghanaian professionals and students have been able to utilize all the ITEC slots earmarked for the country.
In addition, the Indian High Commissioner said similar course/training programme under decision of India-Africa Summit decisions are also available to Ghanaian officials.  To this end, Mr Bhagat revealed that: “A total of 170 students/professionals were trained under ITEC and other schemes in 2011-12. Since the commencement of ITEC scheme, over 1,350 Ghanaian students and professionals have been trained in India”.
Apart from the training of civilian personnel, ITEC also imparts training to defence personnel in various defence institutions in India. Some of the ITEC alumni have reached the top echelons in their respective Armed Forces including the Ghana Armed Forces.
The Minister of Education, Mr Lee Ocran who was the special guest of honour appealed to the Indian Government to assist Ghana to promote Information and Communication Technology (ICT) education in tertiary institutions in the country.
Dignitaries who graced the occasion were the Minister of Information, Minister of Trade and Industry, Ms Hannah Tetteh, Minister of Environment, Science and Technology, Ms Sherry Ayitey , and Second Speaker of Parliament, Professor Michael Oquaye.

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