India-UAE Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement

India-UAE Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) is a landmark trade pact that will propel the two friendly nations forward towards a magnificent, shared destiny. The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is India's third-largest trading partner and second-largest export destination. Both countries are now each other's most important trading partners.

India and the UAE have signed a historic trade and economic agreement that will propel the two friendly nations towards a glorious, shared future. CEPA between India and the UAE is a historic deal that will transform the lives of millions of people in the two countries.

CEPA has the potential to promote upward mobility throughout the economic value chain, resulting in hundreds of thousands of job opportunities in both countries. In five years, bilateral trade is expected to grow by $ 100 Bn in goods and $ 15 Bn in services. This ground-breaking agreement will facilitate the free flow of goods, services, capital, technology, and people, as well as mutually beneficial collaboration.

Economic Partnership

They expressed confidence that the agreement would strengthen economic ties and open new trade and investment opportunities. They directed their respective officials to promote two-way investments in infrastructure projects, including speeding up work on establishing a dedicated investment zone for UAE companies and joint ventures that would focus on, among other things, establishing a food corridor. The leaders praised the opening of a dedicated India Mart in the Jebel Ali Free Zone.

The leaders also encouraged Indian investors to set up specialised industrial advanced technology zones in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, integrating local value chains of existing and future specialised economic zones in logistics and services, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, agriculture, agri-tech, steel, and aluminium.

Cultural Cooperation

India and the UAE have agreed to establish an India-UAE Cultural Council to promote cultural co-operation between the two countries. The initiative will be coordinated by the UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation's Office of Public and Cultural Diplomacy, as well as the Indian Council for Cultural Relations.

Energy Partnership

The UAE and India are committed to working together to achieve a just and equitable transition to a low-carbon future as they navigate the global energy transition. Both countries have promoted and delivered significant investment opportunities through the comprehensive strategic partnership. The UAE is one of India's major energy suppliers, and it is proud to have been the first international partner to invest in India's strategic petroleum reserves program through crude oil.

Climate Action and Renewables

Leaders of India and the UAE agreed to step up cooperation to speed up climate action, with a particular focus on 'Green Hydrogen' production. The leaders praised the UAE's ongoing investments in India's clean technology programmes and initiatives and called for more business-to-business (B-B) and public-private partnerships (PPPs) to be strengthened. In this context, the leaders agreed to form a joint Hydrogen Task Force to assist in the scaling up of technologies.

Emerging Technologies

The UAE and India have agreed to expand cooperation and collaborate on critical technologies, as well as promote e-business and e-payment solutions. The leaders asked their officials to look into mechanisms and sectors that would encourage collaboration. Fintech, edutech, health care, logistics and supply chain, agritech, chip design, and green energy are some of the areas where startups could focus.

Skills Cooperation

Both India and the UAE recognise the importance of upskilling in increasing workforce productivity and the value of a skilled workforce from India in the UAE's various economic sectors. The two parties agreed to step up their collaboration to create a set of professional standards and skills framework that they both agree on.

Food Security

Recognising India and the UAE's long-standing strategic partnership in the field of food security, as well as the need to improve the resilience and reliability of food supply chains, as demonstrated by the covid-19 pandemic, the leaders agreed to expand cooperation through increased bilateral food and agriculture trade and responsible foreign investments in agriculture and food systems. The two countries also agreed to promote and strengthen infrastructure and dedicated logistics services that connect farms to ports and then to final destinations in the UAE. They directed relevant government agencies and industry partners to initiate and implement pilot projects.

Health Cooperation

India and the UAE have agreed to increase UAE investments in India's rapidly expanding health infrastructure. The leaders also agreed to work together to provide health care to people living in impoverished countries. They also acknowledged India's and the UAE's contributions to global vaccine supply.

Education Cooperation

The leaders agreed to establish an Indian Institute of Technology in the United Arab Emirates, reaffirming the historical ties between the two countries and recognising the need to establish world-class institutions that encourage and support innovation and technological progress.

Cooperation in International Arena

The leaders agreed to increase mutual support in multilateral areas in order to promote collaboration in the economic and infrastructure sectors, reflecting shared values and principles and increasing strategic convergence. India's and the UAE's leaders agreed to strengthen bilateral cooperation in multilateral areas to promote economic and infrastructure cooperation. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi congratulated His Highness Sheikh Mohamed on the UAE's appointment to the United Nations Security Council as a non-permanent member for the period 2022-2023.

Defence and Security

The leaders emphasised the importance of maintaining and strengthening peace in the Middle East. They expressed their hope that the Abraham Accords will help to bring regional peace and positive change to the region. The leaders agreed to boost bilateral cooperation in the fight against terrorism, terrorist financing, and extremism.

This is authored by Bhakti Jain.