What started as an exploratory visit to Dubai in 1975 by Dr. Surender Singh Kandhari led to the creation of a multinational company with diverse business interests. His passion for excellence and integrity are cornerstones on which the Al Dobowi family is built. Dr. Kandhari is an active and respected leader in the community as well as in business. He is an advocate of giving back and has been recognised globally for his numerous charitable endeavours. His organisation, Al Dobowi is a globally renowned systems and solutions provider for tyre management, power storage, industrial rubber, material handling and fluid management industries. Over the years, the company has progressed beyond tyre management, expanding into other including batteries for motive power and automotive batteries, oils and lubricants, conveyor belt systems and technical rubber products. Al Dobowi is also largest battery manufacturer in the MENA region and provide both automotive and industrial solutions that power some of the world’s most diversified economic activities. Leading industrial UAE manufacturer, Eternity Technologies is one of the fastest growing industrial battery company in the world, offering a wide range of industrial batteries and services for material handling equipment such as electric forklifts and renewable energy storage such as off grid solar systems. Eternity Technologies operate from a unique global and regional state-of-the-art manufacturing facility, specialising in the manufacture and supply of industry-leading, high performance industrial batteries. Al Dobowi is now in the stage of acquiring a company in India, which in turn will aid in improving its position from fourth to third in the world.
Strategic Deals— CEPA AND I2U2
During a virtual summit on February 18, 2022, the UAE and India sealed a Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) aiming to increase annual bilateral trade and services from the current level of $60 billion to $115 billion over the next five years. Dr. Kandhari believes the signing of both major pacts — (CEPA) and India, Israel, UAE and US (I2U2) are set to become a real game changer boosting investment opportunities between countries and uncovering new avenues for collaboration. He said: “I think both the agreements of CEPA and I2U2 are very significant for businesses. The UAE and India have been partners in so many fields. The Government of UAE has given a lot of support through banking channels, documentation work, the variable to grow, cover all the six continents in the world and support 150 nations we export batteries to. So, I'm very grateful that the systems in the UAE support all such businesses. Al Dobowi Group has an industrial battery manufacturing plant in Ras Al Khaimah and in Technopark in Jebel Ali. Our plant is now the fourth largest industrial battery manufacturing plant in the world and we are spread across Spain, Germany, US, Chile as well as India. Today, we have an advantage — we are duty-free. So, by doing this, businesses will surely improve and help the country get goods for a cheaper price.”
UAE’S Support for Indian Businesses
Hailing the introduction of the Golden Visa in the UAE, Dr. Kandhari said that the new residency visa for Indians has boosted trade ties between both India and the UAE. The new system aims at attracting and retaining global talents and skilled workers from all over the world, boosting competitiveness and fostering a high sense of stability among UAE residents. Reiterating on the benefits of the Golden Visa, he said: “It’s now very easy for Indians to move and travel to the UAE. The Golden Visa is going to be a big advantage for visitors to come and invest in the UAE, accelerating economic growth and productivity. With an Indian expatriate community of 3.5 million, the UAE is a preferred destination for Indian investors to set up their businesses.” The relationship between India and the UAE has transitioned from being diplomatic to social, cultural and economic as well. According to Dr. Kandhari, the UAE and India have always enjoyed strong cultural and trade relations. "This relation between both governments has further resulted in good business prospects in various fields including science, technology and innovation." Elaborating on the India-UAE relationship, Dr. Kandhari said: “The last 10 years have been very significant for both the countries as we have seen this pattern growth in the support each country has given to each other especially with the visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to the UAE in 2022. I believe in the future, India and UAE are going to be even stronger as both are dependent on each other. When there's a good image, strong support, mutual respect, you can have more business.”
In the Coming Years
Proud of his roots, Dr. Kandhari says that as India celebrates its 74th Republic Day, the country is a shining example of how a former British colony has evolved to become one of the rising powerhouses in the world. "Since the very beginning, India has proven to be much more than just a modern economic success story. Now as India celebrates this day, the country is poised to become a global superpower in the near future.”
Message for 74th India Republic Day
First of all, as Chairman of Guru Nanak Darbar in Dubai, I would like to thank the Rulers of the UAE for allowing us to practice our own religion in the UAE. India is a country where more than 5,000 years of tolerance has been practiced. It is a place where we can respect each other, love each other, grow compassion, and be together, because unless we are together, we cannot grow. My only message to Indians is that let's all work together and may our tricolour always fly high. We should all try to forget our petty differences and self-interest motives and work towards the welfare of the nation. Jai Hind!