UIEF 2017 concludes with calls for increased collaboration in investments in technology, renewable energy and healthcare space between UAE and India
The UAE-India Economic Forum (UIEF) 2017, organized by UMS Conferences, concluded in Dubai on November 9, 2017 exploring bilateral economic and commercial relations between the two countries to the next level. The UIEF focused on the bilateral benefits of the increased collaboration in investment, trade, technology, renewable energy, healthcare, infrastructure, ports, banking and finance, and tourism between the UAE and India.
The third edition of the annual Forum also conferred Qadat Al Tagheer Awards to prominent business leaders from India and the UAE.
Commenting on the overwhelming response to the third edition of the UIEF, Alpana Roy, Executive Vice President at UMS Group, said, “The UIEF provided exclusive insights into key areas such as defense and security, tourism, banking and finance, renewable energy, and space technology. The resounding success of the Forum reflected in the vision of both the governments to gain the most from this partnership, the previously ambitious goal of reaching US$ 100 billion in trade by 2020 now seems achievable.”
“Building on decades of rich cultural and historical bonds between India and the Middle East, the combined partnership between India and the UAE has developed from its initial days of trade in timber, spices and ivory to one in which bilateral trade has grown over $59 billion in the past few years. India and UAE have re-energised their bilateral trade relations, which have been boosted by the frequent visits of both countries’ leaders in a short span of two years to discuss the future of trade and investments. India is the second largest trade partner for the UAE. Recent developments have further strengthened the relationship, opening a universe of opportunities,” she added.
Speaking on the potential investment opportunities between the UAE and India, Mohammed Nassir Al Hazzaa, Director General, Emirates Industrial City, said, “The AED 2 billion worth project, an integrated industrial zone with international standards, is expecting an investment of AED 500 million in the next 3 years, and investment of AED 1 billion in the next seven to 10 years from Indian investors in a variety of industrial sectors. We represent the world’s finest industrial zone with 100 years leasehold for foreigners with commercial and industrial properties in a prime location on Emirates Road.”
Speaking on the topic titled “Hyperloop is Real”, Harj Dhaliwal, Managing Director Middle East & India, Hyperloop One, focused on eliminating the barriers of distance and time with Hyperloop One rebalancing economies and enabling people, goods and services to move faster. “The Hyperloop system will grab a substantial share of the transport and logistics sector with the ability to travel between the states in the GCC region in under an hour, traveling at speeds of 1080 kilometre per hour.”
Karuna Gopal, President of Foundation for Futuristic Cities, discussed about creating a robust business ecosystem to though smart cities. “Technology influences the world positively, and its power is shaping the future of the world. But tech solutions should make life more meaningful and productive with innovations bringing joy to lives of people. Technology is also a double-edged sword requiring more human awareness and alertness. There is enormous value that technology can bring to humanity but it also has the power to dehumanize the human kind,” she said.
The event also saw politician and former captain of the Indian Cricket Team, Mohammad Azharuddin, speak about the role of cricket in uniting two nations.
The UIEF brought together the governments of the two countries, something that the forum has been successfully doing for the past two years. Over 400 delegates from the UAE and India joined the conference. The Forum has now reached the next level with another set of leaders including policymakers, businessmen and investors who have been fueling the economy of their respective countries. The presence of sovereign wealth funds, large corporates and industries at this gathering has been only getting stronger over the past two years.
The key industry sectors took part in the Forum include infrastructure, real estate; roads, highways & ports, manufacturing, banking & finance, eCommerce, hospitality, healthcare, tourism & travel, defence & security, space technology, sustainable utilities and renewables, media & entertainment, education and free zones.
The UAE and India share a common vision of progress and prosperity. The UAE investments in India have jumped by US$ 1 billion in the past one year alone, and the UAE is the second largest export destination for India, with US$ 30 billion for the year 2015–16. The total foreign direct investment inflows from UAE to India stand at US$ 4.03 billion ending March 2016. The UAE has been actively pursuing its plan to re-energise the Free Trade Agreement between the GCC and India. The Indian union cabinet gave the green signal to proceed with the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between India and the UAE to procure a US$-74-billion long-term investment in the National Investment and Infrastructure Fund (NIIF).