UAE, India to boost trade by 60%

Agencies/New Delhi
Filed on September 4, 2015 | Last updated on September 4, 2015 at 07.44 am
UAE, India to boost trade by 60%

UAE keen to invest in programmes like Make in India, Digital India and Smart Cities.

The UAE and India on Thursday agreed to boost bilateral trade by 60 per cent over the next five years and also enhance UAE investments in India.

UAE's Foreign Minister Shaikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan and Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj attended the 11th session of the India-UAE Joint Commission Meeting for Technical and Economical Cooperation.

The UAE minister called on Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and later held meetings with Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar, Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu and National Security Advisor Ajit Doval, who is hosting a dinner in his honour.

Shaikh Abdullah, who arrived earlier in the day, was accompanied by UAE's Minister of State Reem Ibrahim Al Hashemi and a high level delegation of businesspersons and officials numbering 95.

At the joint commission meeting, the two sides discussed subjects in areas like, trade and commerce; investments; finance and banking; energy, hydro-carbons, petrochemicals and fertilisers; defence and space; transport, civil aviation, ports and meteorology; health and agriculture, education, culture and tourism; security and combating crime; immigration, consular and Indian community related issues.

Both sides agreed to enhance cooperation in these areas, said an official statement.

The recent visit of Modi to the UAE "has redefined India-UAE bilateral relationship and elevated it to a strategic partnership", it said.

The two sides agreed to increase the bilateral trade by 60 per cent over the next five years and also to encourage the investment institutions of the UAE to raise their investments in India, including through the establishment of UAE-India Infrastructure Investment Fund, with the aim of reaching a target of $75 billion.

The two sides agreed to work for early establishment of the planned India-UAE Joint Fund for investments in the infrastructure sector in India, the statement said.

The two minister also inaugurated an India-UAE Joint Business Council and the two sides signed four MoUs - on cooperation in the areas of higher education and scientific research; tourism, in the field of specifications and measures, cooperation in telecom and between the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Federation of UAE Chambers of Commerce and Industry.

UAE to increase investment

The UAE said it is looking to invest in programmes like Make in India, Digital India and Smart Cities.

"We are determined to attract more investment into India in various sectors. I am extremely keen to hear and listen from you some of the proposals, especially Make in India, Digital India and Smart City initiatives," Reem Al Hashemi said.

She said infrastructure is a key element in this regard as it opens up markets and opportunities for stronger people-to-people ties.

The minister said that the UAE was "determined" to take its relationship with India "to a new strategic level".

Citing the example of Dubai Ports World, she said: "We want to do more, we have the capacity, the willingness, the drive to do more".

"We hope you allow us to be more entrenched and more involved in your community and your business because the appetite is strong and the commitment is real," Al Hashemi said.

Pointing out that Dubai will host the World Exposition 2020, the minister said: "We would need our Indian partners and friends for support to help us achieve those deliverables." - Agencies

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