India – UAE Trade Relations


India and United Arab Emirates (UAE) enjoy strong bonds of friendship founded on Millennia old cultural, religious and economic intercourse between the two regions. People – to- people contacts and barter trade between two regions have existed for centuries. The relationship flourished since the creation of the UAE Federation in 1971 and trade has played a major role in the strengthening the bilateral relationship.

Bilateral Trade

According to Government of India figures, in FY 2014-15, trade between India and UAE crossed US$ 59bn, with Indian exports worth US$ 33.3bn to the UAE and US$ 26bn worth of UAE’s exports to India, thus making UAE India’s one of the top trading partner. Indian businessmen and traders have contributed significantly to the economic fabric of UAE. Indian professionals also occupy important positions in various banks, private companies and business establishments in the country. The unskilled and semi skilled workers from India are a dominant force in the construction industry. The contribution of Indians to the growth of UAE is acknowledged by the rulers and the people of UAE.

Investments from Dubai & Northern Emirates in India

Dubai Ports World: While Dubai itself is a major investment destination, it also has an important and growing presence in India. Dubai Ports (DP) World operates at: Nhava Sheva International Container Terminal Private Limited, Chennai Container Terminal Private Limited and India Gateway Terminal at Cochin. The Rajiv Gandhi Container Terminal in Vallarpadam, developed and operated by Dubai Ports World is the first International Container Trans-shipment Terminal in India. On 1 November 2012, DP World won the contract to build and operate a single berth terminal facility at Nhava Sheva, Mumbai. The US$ 200mn worth facility expected to be operational in 2015 will have an annual handling capacity of 800,000 TEUs.

RAK ceramics : RAK ceramics, a USD 1bn global conglomerate with global production of tiles exceeding 3,60,000 sq.m and 1200 pieces of Sanitary ware per day from its 10 state of art plants in UAE has 1 plant each in Bangladesh, China, India, Iran and Sudan.In India, RAK Ceramics has the largest vitrified tile manufacturing plant in Samalkot in Andhra Pradesh with a per day manufacturing capacity of 30, 000sq. m of vitrified tiles and 1500 sanitary ware.

Emaar MGF: Emaar MGF Land Limited is a joint venture between Dubai based Emaar Properties and MGF developments of India. The company commenced operation in India in February, 2005 and is into real estate development with a pan – India presence and operations spanning all key segments of the India real estate industry, namely residential, commercial, retail and hospitality sectors. At present, its focus is on the development of residential projects in Delhi and elsewhere in NCR, Mohali, Hyderabad, Chennai and other key Indian Cities.

TECOM: TECOM investment was established in the year 2005 to build, manage and develop the business parks vertical under Dubai Holding. TECOM business Parks comprises of 10 business parks under five industry clusters across the information and communication technology (ICT), media, education, sciences, as well as manufacturing and logistics sectors. TECOM investment has conceptualized Smart City to develop knowledge industry townships globally. SmartCity Malta and Smart City Kochi are their first two international developments. SmartCity Kochi is a JV between Smart City Dubai and Government of Kerala with 84% and 16% respectively. SmartCity Kochi is a home to knowledge based companies that aim to serve the Indian Continent.

Major Indian Companies in Dubai & Northern Emirates

Many leading Indian companies and banks have an important presence in Dubai. For example, L & T, HCL Infosystems, Nagarjuna Construction Company Limited, Hinduja Group, Danube, Sobha Group, Indian Oil Corporation, Reliance Industries, Essar Group, Bank of Baroda, State Bank of India, IDBI Bank, Union Bank of India, Oriental Bank of Commerce, Punjab National Bank, Indusind Bank, Bank of India, Indian Overseas Bank, HDFC, ICICI, Axis Bank, Andhra Bank, Canara Bank, Corporation Bank etc. RAKFTZ is home to a large number of Indian companies operating in diverse sectors including Pioneer Cement (USD 105 million investment), JBF RAK Polyester Chips and Films (USD 100 million), Eternity Technologies of Al Dobowi Group manufacturing industrial batteries (USD 55 million), Ashok Leyland Bus/Truck Assembly (USD 50 million), Mahindra Emirates Vehicle Armoury (USD 25 million), Dabur India Herbal Products(USD 25 million), RAK Steel Products (USD 25 million), Bosco Aluminium Products (USD 10 million), etc.

Delegation visits from India

Visit of Minister of State Finance: Hon’ble Minister of State for Finance Shri Jayant Sinha visited Dubai from 10 – 12 April, 2015. Hon’ble Minister delivered a keynote speech during the inaugural edition of a new speaker series – UTKARSH Bharat – an initiative of Consulate-General of India in association with the Pan IIM Alumni Network. Further Minister met with Governor of Dubai International Financial Centre and discussed about India’s first smart city – GIFT and also attended two different investment sessions, one with prominent and HNI Emiratis and second session a townhall meeting with 200 potential investors, mainly Indians.

Visit of Kerala delegation: A 3- member delegation from Kerala led by Mr. Ommen Chandy, Hon’ble Chief Minister visited Dubai from 29th March – 2 April, 2015 to participate in Annual Investment Meet (AIM) 2015 organized by UAE Ministry of economy. In addition to participating in AIM 2015 as one of the chief speakers in one of the panel discussions, the Hon’ble Minister had meetings with Ruler of Dubai HH Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Minister of Economy HE Sultan bin Saeed Al Mansouri and Dr Mohammad Al Zarooni, Director General of Dubai Airport Free Zone. The minister also attended the Board of Directors meeting in TECOM for Smart City Kochi.

Visit of Telangana delegation: A delegation from Telangana led by Mr. Jupalli KrishnaRao, Hon’ble Minister for Industries, Handloom, Textile visited Dubai from 29th March to 1st April, 2015 to participate in Annual Investment Meet (AIM) 2015 organized by UAE Ministry of economy. During the visit the Minister had meetings with TECOM Smart City Authority and also one to one meetings with investors including Lulu Group, Pure Gold, Varkey Group, SRM Group among others. A dinner networking event was also held to showcase the opportunities in the new formed state of telegana, which was attended by many prominent businessmen and media.

Visit of Honble EAM to UAE: Mrs. Sushma Swaraj, Hon’ble Minister of External Affairsand Overseas Indian Affairs visited UAE on 10th November, 2014 on her first bilateral official visit to the United Arab Emirates. Hon’ble Minister had meetings with His Highness Sheikh Saif Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior of the UAE as well as her host, His Highness Sheikh Abdullah Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Foreign Minister of UAE. The Hon’ble Minister met representatives of the Indian community at a reception hosted by the Embassy of India, in her honour. His Highness Sheikh Nahyan Bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister for Culture, Youth Affairs and Social Development also attended the event.

Vibrant Gujarat Delegation: A delegation led by Mr. BB Swain, MD, GIDC,for a road show to promote Vibrant Gujarat Summit to be held from 11 – 13 Jan 2015 at
Gandhinagar, Gujarat. This was second leg of their tour that began with Qatar. On 7th September, the delegation interacted with Indian investors over Lunch and Dinner organized by IBPC Dubai and on 8th they met with a delegation from Dubai Chamber of Commerce where various avenues of trade promotion between Gujarat and Dubai were discussed.

Madhya Pradesh Delegation: A 10-member high level delegation fromPradesh (GoMP) led by HE Mr. Shivraj Singh Chauhan, Hon’ble Chief Minister of MP visited UAE from 20 – 22 August,2014. The delegation that included senior ministers from the state such as HE Ms Yashodhara Raje Scindia, Minister of Industries and Commerce, HE Sh Kailash Vijayvargiya, Hon’ble Minister for Urban Administration & Housing-Environment and HE Mr. Umashanker Gupta, Minister of HRD, and other senior bureaucrats were on a road-show to promote the Global Investors Summit held at Indore from 8 – 10 October, 2014 and to attract investments to Madhya Pradesh.

GIFT City Delegation: A 5 member delegation from Government of Gujarat (GoG), headed by Shri Saurabh Dalal, Minister for Finance, Energy and Petrochemicals, Mines Minerals, Cottage Industries, Salt Industries, Printing and Stationery, Planning, Tourism, Civil aviation, Labour and Employment visited Dubai from 8 – 10 August, 2014. The main objective of the delegation’s visit was to study the infrastructural, legal, financial and other necessary frameworks that support the successful operation of more than 25 free zones in Dubai. This comes in the backdrop of Gujarat’s efforts to initiate a project called the GIFT (Gujarat International Financial Tech) city, near Ahmadabad, (in partnership with IL&FS).

Exhibitions & Events

Arabplast: The 12th edition of Arab International Plastics & Rubber Industry Trade Show (Arabplast) was held in Dubai from 10 – 13 January, 2015. The Indian Pavilion comprised of more than 100 companies participating under the aegis of the Plastics Exports Promotion Council (Plexconcil).

Gulfood: The 20th edition of Gulfood, the world’s largest annual exhibition in food and hospitality was held in Dubai from 8 – 12 February, 2015. The exhibition hosted over more than 4800 companies and government organizations from various countries. The Indian pavilion saw participation of more than 300 companies under the aegis of Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA), Ministry of Food Processing Industries (MoFPI) and trade promotion councils including Cashew Export Promotion Council, Tea Board also participated in the event. The Indian Pavilion was one of the biggest pavilions in the exhibition. The pavilion promoted rice – Basmati and non -Basmati, herbs, spices, processed food products, poultry, meat, dairy products, confectionary, juices, chocolates, ready to eat foodstuff, varieties of tea etc.

India – UAE Medical Partnership: The first edition of India – UAE Exhibition organized by Ministry of Tourism in association with Indian Consulate, Dubai
and Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry, (FICCI), New Delhi was held in Dubai from 9th – 10th April, 2015 at Hotel Ritz Carlton, DIFC. The exhibition featured 25 leading multi-specialty hospitals and health care institutions as well as centers for alternative healthcare like Ayurveda, Yoga, Unani, Siddha & Homoeopathy. As part of Concurrent CME program(Continuing Medical education) accredited by Dubai Health Authority , 19 eminent speakers from India gave presentations in streams including Cardiology, Oncology and Bone Marrow Transplant, Organ Transplant, IVF, Joint Replacement, Bariatric Surgery, Neurosurgery. The event was supported by local UAE organizations including Dubai Health Authority, Sharjah Healthcare City, IBPC-Dubai, IBPC-Sharjah and Air India & Air Arabia was the Official Airline Partner of the show.