The Gulf Co-operation Council (GCC) is India’s second-largest trading partner after the US, with bilateral trade being close to $150 billion, with the UAE-India trade being $1.3 billion per week.
At the same time, India stands to be the world’s fifth-largest consumer of oil, while Gulf countries import India’s food and manufactured goods, says India’s Consul General to the UAE, Sanjay Verma.
The diplomat made the remarks on Thursday at the sideline of officially inaugurated a multi-million dirham, Technomak’s group head office and fabrication facility at the Hamriyah Free Zone in Sharjah. The facility is one of the largest and leading Engineering Procurement and Construction (EPC) company in the region to cater offshore, oil, gas and marine industry.
Verma went on to say that the GCC countries, comprising Oman, the UAE, Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar and Saudi Arabia have identified various sectors such as petroleum oil and energy, gas and fertilizers, information technology, higher education, civil aviation and agriculture for potential co-operation with India.
India is also the first trade partner of the UAE, with our bilateral exchange topping $70 billion last year, hence making the UAE one of India’s leading trade partners said Verma. He further added that the trade between the two countries continues to register a strong growth, especially with the presence of leading Indian companies operating in the UAE.
He described the India-UAE partnership as a role model for other international bilateral relationship.
He disclosed that Non-Resident Indian (NRIs) make up the largest community in the UAE, outnumbering all other nationalities, and are estimated to own nearly half of the UAE’s registered companies that are currently active in various parts of the emirates.
Verma singled out the Northern Emirates as having a strong presence of Indian entrepreneurs, especially at Hamriyah Free Zone.
The Consul General noted that the UAE actually has some of the best infrastructure in the world and a conducive business environment for Indian investors.
He said the Gulf region obviously provides perfect opportunities for growth and faster returns, since markets in the West remain challenged due to the global recession. Verma told the mammoth gathering who comprised of top government officials and business entrepreneurs that historically, both countries share long trade links that spans across centuries.
India continues to remain the biggest trading partner for Dubai accounting for 19 per cent of Dubai foreign trade amounting to $37.3 billion in 2011, according to statistics.
Dubai, Verma says has traditionally been a popular base for many enterprising Indian businessmen and traders, adding that in turn, they have contributed significantly to the economic fabric of Dubai.
“The role of the Indian community in the UAE is highly valued as they have contributed to the UAE’s growth, development of its infrastructure, its economy and the sharing of technological expertise. Most of the Indian professionals, he disclosed work in most senior positions such as CEOs, engineers, health care sector, industrialists etc.
He said with such a growth, both countries stand to gain from intensified practical cooperation in all the major fields. He highly commended the leadership of UAE describing it as robust, forward looking and proactive which is definitely reassuring not only the Indian entrepreneurs but also the other multi-national business community.
Dr. Rashid Al Leem, Director General Department of Sharjah Port & Customs and also of Hamriyah Free Zone Authority (HFZA), who also participated in the inauguration ceremony urged more and more Indian companies to continue investing in HFZ and make the maximum use of these facilities, which offers endless opportunities for business sustainability.
The zone, Dr. Al Leem said has been targeting Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).
Hamriyah Free Zone (HFZ) he added has evolved into a model of sustainable development and inclusive growth by attracting thousands of international investors from across the globe during the past 15 years, with 25 per cent of the investors being from India.
Dr. Al Leem noted that the UAE has been the largest trading partner of India in the past and also at present.
Indian exports, mainly of gem and jewellery, engineering goods, meat and marine products, textile and apparels while imports from UAE, comprises of oil and petroleum products, precious stones, non-ferrous metals, gold, silver etc.
Verma and Dr. Al Leem personally commended the three engineers who got together to establish Technomak Energry international.
Technomak’s immediate expansion plans include an office base in Saudi Arabia.
“After executing numerous projects in the country, Technomak feels the need to have a permanent corporate presence offering all its extensive range of services. This will also mean easy access to our clients based in Saudi Arabia, says Mansoor Karkkar, Technomak’s executive director.
From / Gulf Today