As part of the Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit 2024, the India-UAE Business Summit was held on Wednesday to strengthen bilateral ties between the two nations.
The inaugural session of the India-UAE Business Summit included keynote addresses from Union Minister of Commerce and Industry Piyush Goyal, UAE’s Minister of State for Foreign Trade Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi and special remarks from Gujarat Chief Minister Bhupendrabhai Patel, according to Ministry of Commerce and Industry press release.
Piyush Goyal, Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, and Bhupendra Patel ceremonially launched the UAE-India CEPA Council (UICC) website as part of the inaugural session. The session also highlighted India’s booming startup landscape and included remarks from Kunal Bahl, Chairman – Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) National Startup Council and Co-founder – Snapdeal and Titan Capital.
A report on the CII India-UAE Start-Up Initiative titled “Unlocking Opportunities: India- UAE Start-Up Ecosystem Convergence” was also launched during the summit. The inaugural session was chaired by R Dinesh, President, CII and Chairman, TVS Supply Chain Solutions Limited.
Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem, Chief Executive Officer, DP World, and MA Yusuff Ali, Chairman, Lulu Group International, who mentioned their interest in increasing investment in the food processing industry in India, also delivered addresses during the inaugural session.
The India-UAE Business Summit also facilitated a focused discussion session for further cooperation in areas like trade finance, investment facilitation, and sectoral collaboration. The delegations from India and the UAE comprised representatives from both the government and the industry. The session included a presentation on the Bharat Mart, which is a proposed warehousing facility by India in the UAE to support Indian exporters.
In a post shared on X, Piyush Goyal on Wednesday stated, “Even sky is not the limit for our partnership! Participated in the India-UAE Business Summit alongside H.E. @ThaniAlZeyoudi, UAE Minister of State for Foreign Trade and @BhupendraPBJP ji, Chief Minister of Gujarat. Launched the report on CII India-UAE Startup Initiative and discussed ways to tap the full potential of our growing economic partnership.”
UAE’s President Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan is the chief guest at the Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit 2024. He further emphasised the growing cooperation and strengthening relations between the two nations. PM Narendra Modi extended a warm welcome to Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan and remarked that India cherishes his thoughts and efforts to boost India-UAE ties.
Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan addressed the Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit 2024 on Wednesday at the Mahatma Mandir Convention and Exhibition Centre in Gandhinagar.
Following his speech, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in a post on social media platform X, lauded the UAE President and said that his statements were very encouraging.
In a post shared on X, PM Modi stated, “My brother, His Highness Sheikh @MohamedBinZayed
not only supervised the @VibrantGujarat summit, but also spoke at the summit. His statements were very encouraging. India is proud of his ideas and efforts to strengthen India-UAE relations.”
Notably, the trade between India and UAE rose to USD 85 billion in 2022, making the UAE India’s third-largest trading partner for the year 2022-23 and India’s second-largest export destination, according to the Ministry of Commerce and Industry press release.
In February 2022, India became the first country with which the UAE signed a Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA). Bilateral trade between India and the UAE has witnessed a rise of approximately 15 per cent since the CEPA came into effect on May 1, 2022.
“The CEPA was a landmark agreement designed to spark a new era of cooperation between two nations and strengthening the long-standing cultural, political and economic ties. It has helped reduce tariffs on more than 80 per cent of product lines, eliminate barriers to trade and create new pathways for investment and joint ventures. In the first 12 months of the CEPA, bilateral non-oil trade reached USD 50.5 billion, representing a growth of 5.8 per cent compared to the corresponding period a year earlier,” the Ministry of Commerce and Industry said in a press release.
“The two countries are fast moving towards the target of USD 100 billion non-oil trade by 2030,” it added.
A Memorandum of Understanding for the establishment of a framework to promote the use of local currencies (INR-AED) for cross-border transactions was signed by the Governors of the respective Central Banks of India and the UAE in July 2023, according to the press release.
Furthermore, developing the Local Currency Settlement System between India and the UAE to settle bilateral trade reflects mutual confidence and underlines the robustness of the economies in both countries. According to the press release, the UAE-India Business Summit is another step towards accelerating India-UAE bilateral economic relations for mutual growth and prosperity.