A tale of growing partnership

The UAE and India forging stronger bonds

By Aryan Anand

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Published: Tue 7 May 2024, 4:04 PM

In a world where diversity is on the rise, the recent talks between the UAE and India shine as a hopeful example of building stronger ties amid the chaos in West Asia.

Recently, the UAE Minister of State for International Cooperation Reem bint Ebrahim Al Hashimy, along with a high-level delegation, visited India to bolster the relationship between the two countries. The meeting with India’s Foreign Minister S Jaishankar was aimed to strengthen their strategic partnership and tackle the complex regional and global issues together. As they delved into discussions about their comprehensive strategic partnership, it became evident that the India-UAE relationship is evolving beyond traditional diplomatic channels.

The remarkable surge in trade, which has reached a substantial $80 billion, is a clear indication of the growing economic collaboration between India and the UAE. This is a significant milestone in their bilateral dynamics, highlighting the deepening ties in the economic landscape.

The India-UAE relationship has blossomed into a robust partnership marked by mutual respect, economic collaboration, and cultural exchange, in recent years. From trade and investment to defence cooperation and people-to-people ties, the bond between these two nations has been steadily deepening, fostering a symbiotic relationship that benefits both sides.


Indian businesses have found a welcoming environment in the UAE, where they have invested billions of dollars across various sectors such as real estate, infrastructure, healthcare, and technology. One prime example is the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority’s (ADIA) substantial investments in India’s infrastructure projects and renewable energy sector. Additionally, Indian companies like Tata, Reliance, and Adani Group have also made significant investments in the UAE.


In 2023, India and the UAE conducted their first-ever joint military exercise, codenamed “Desert Eagle.” This landmark exercise showcased the growing defence partnership between the two nations and provided an opportunity for their armed forces to exchange expertise and enhance interoperability.

Aryan Anand
Aryan Anand


Cultural ties between India and the UAE have also flourished as the UAE is home to about 3.5 million Indian nationals -- the largest expatriate community in the Gulf country, contributing significantly to its social, cultural, and economic fabric.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi recently spoke about ties between the two countries reaching “unprecedented heights” as he started a visit to inaugurate the Middle East’s largest Hindu temple in the Gulf state earlier this year.

Furthermore, events like the Abu Dhabi Festival and the Dubai Shopping Festival are platforms for showcasing India’s rich cultural heritage, attracting tourists and fostering cultural exchange between the two nations. Initiatives such as the ‘Year of Tolerance’ in the UAE and India’s celebration of International Day of Yoga have promoted mutual understanding and harmony between the peoples of both countries.

In the face of global instability, the India-UAE are solidifying a deepening cooperation and friendship. By leveraging their respective strengths and complementing each other’s aspirations, both nations stand to reap the rewards of a strategic partnership built on trust, mutual respect, and shared values, setting an example of constructive engagement and diplomacy to the world.

The author is a freelance writer at Milabalyawmi.

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