The traditionally strong bilateral relations enjoyed by India and UAE received impetus with the visit of Hon’ble Prime Minister of India, Sh. Narendra Modi to UAE in August 2015. This visit marked the beginning of a new strategic partnership between the two countries. His Royal Highness, Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of UAE Armed Forces, visited India in February 2016. His Royal Highness visited India again in January, 2017 as the Chief Guest at India’s Republic day celebrations. It was during this visit that the bilateral relations were upgraded to a ‘Comprehensive Strategic Partnership’.
India and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) established diplomatic relations in 1972. UAE opened its Embassy in Delhi in 1972 & India opened its Embassy in Abu Dhabi in 1973.
PM Modi visited UAE in February 2018 for the 6th World Government Summit in Dubai, where India was the Guest of Honor; he also met Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of UAE & Ruler of Dubai.
PM visited UAE again in August 2019 to receive UAE's highest civilian award, 'the Order of Zayed’ and which was conferred on him by the UAE President in April 2019. The visit also witnessed the official launch of the ‘RuPay Card’ in UAE, and the release of a set of stamps issued by Emirates Post commemorating the 150th Birth Anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi
India and UAE have shared trade links through the centuries. The real impetus, however, started after Dubai positioned itself as a regional trading hub by the early 1990s and about the same time, the economic liberalization process started in India.
Growing India-UAE economic and commercial relations contribute to the stability and strength of a rapidly diversifying and deepening bilateral relationship between the two countries. India-UAE trade, valued at $180 mn per annum in the 1970s, is today around $59 bn, making UAE, India's third-largest trading partner for the year 2019-20.
UAE is the second-largest export destination of India (after the US) with an amount of over 28 bn for the year 2019-20. For UAE, India was the second-largest trading partner during 2019-20.
UAE's investments in India are mainly in five sectors: Services Sector (15.78%), Sea Transport(8.80%), Power(8.34%), Construction Activities (Infrastructure -7.15%), and Construction Development (Townships, Housing, Built-up Infrastructure And Construction-Development Projects - 7.08%). During Apr 2000 - Jun 2021, UAE became the 9th largest FDI investor with nearly $11.38 bn investments.
Indian investments in the UAE are estimated at around $85 bn. There are 4,365 Indian companies, 238 commercial agencies and 4,862 trademarks registered in the UAE, and the inward Indian FDI stock into the UAE amounted to $6.2 bn at the end of 2017, as per UAE Ministry of Economy data. Most Indian companies have invested in real estate, manufacturing, wholesale and retail trade, transportation, logistics, construction, financial, and insurance activities.
Indian expatriate community of approx. 3.3 millions is the largest ethnic community in UAE constituting roughly about 30 per cent of the country’s population.
The importance given to Indian culture by the UAE was further highlighted in April, 2019 when India participated as the Guest of Honour Country in Abu Dhabi International Book Fair 2019
Soft launch of Gandhi Zayed Digital Museum was done in Abu Dhabi by the then EAM, Late. Smt. Sushma Swaraj and the Foreign Minister of the UAE on 04 December, 2018. The Museum was opened for the public on 12 March, 2019 by Noura bint Mohammed Al Kaabi, UAE’s Minister of Culture & Knowledge Development. In recognition of this unique initiative, the UAE Government presented the Embassy of India and the UAE Ministry of Culture the Pioneers Award for 2019.
The foundation stone for the first Hindu temple in Abu Dhabi was laid on 20 April 2019 and the ceremony was attended by H.E. Dr. Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, the Minister of Climate Change & Environment of the UAE along with other representatives of the Government of the UAE and the Ambassador.
Indian schools: There are 130 Indian schools in the UAE following the CBSE and Kerala Board curricula with approx 219,000 students, mostly children of Indian expatriates.
UAE-based Lulu Group has acquired 20-acre industrial land at Greater Noida at INR 75 crore for food and vegetable processing unit. The company will invest INR 200 crore to set up the facility.
The group will also set up a food processing center in Srinagar for sourcing a wide range of Agri-products from Jammu and Kashmir.
UAE Based gun manufacturers/ Firearm producer Caracal to open manufacturing plant and supply 93,000 carbines to the Indian army.
Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (ADIA) and Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund (PIF) invested ~$1 billion in Reliance Industries’ Digital Fibre Infrastructure Trust. The Digital Fibre Infrastructure Trust holds RIL's fibre-optics assets and was earlier a part of Jio
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has received formal approval to stage the 2020 edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), clearing the way for the marquee Twenty20 tournament to be held between September 19 and November 10 in Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Sharjah.
Hindustan Infralog Pvt Ltd (HIPL), a joint venture between DP World Ltd and India’s National Investment and Infrastructure Fund Ltd (NIIF), will invest Rs 1,000 crore in developing its Nhava Sheva Business Park (NSBP) Free Trade Zone (FTZ) in Mumbai.
Scripbox, an online investment app announced its international foray to target non-residential Indians (NRIs), especially in UAE and Singapore. It has also introduced a new KYC process for non-residential Indians (NRIs) on its digital platform to help onboard them without the use of paper.
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The World's Most Innovative Investment Promotion Agency Award 2021 awarded by OCO Global
United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) Investment Promotion Award 2020 for best practices in COVID response
Best Investment Project Award five years in a row - 2016 to 2020 at the Annual Investment Meeting (AIM) organized by the Ministry of Economy, UAE.
Great Place to Work Certification by GPTW Survey 2019
The UNCTAD Award 2018 for promoting investment in sustainable development
Great Place to Work Certification by GPTW Survey 2018
Investment Award 2016 from the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA)
United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) Investment Promotion Award 2016 for excellence in partnering for investment promotion