Assocham to tie-up with UAE body to boost trade, investment

Wednesday, 04 September 2002, 07:00 Hrs
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NEW DELHI: The Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry (ASSOCHAM) is all set to enter into an agreement with a business body in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to boost investment and bilateral trade.

The chairman of the Assocham foreign trade committee, Anil Agarwal, will lead a 20-member delegation of company CEOs to the UAE on Saturday.

During the five-day trip, the delegation will focus on strategic alliances for third country exports and to invite investment in Indian infrastructure sectors like power, petroleum, ports, roads, airports and services.

"We have already exchanged drafts of memoranda of understanding (MoU) with the chambers of commerce in Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Sharjah. Under the MoU they will act as nodal agencies for Indian delegations in future to facilitate trade and investment between the two countries," an Assocham spokesperson said.

The Assocham will henceforth host all UAE chamber delegations during their stay in India and will act as a facilitator for making business contacts.

"As part of the agreement we will have a dedicated UAE desk at Assocham, while our counterparts there will have special officials looking after Indian trade interests," said Agarwal.

The importance of the UAE in trade and industry lies in the fact that it has emerged as the second largest trading partner of India after the U.S. Last year, Indian exports to the U.S. were to the tune of $8.4 billion, while those to the UAE were $2.5 billion.

"The UAE is a major transit point for Indian exports to the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), the Middle Eastern and African countries. With a more focused attention we feel there is a possibility to expand Indian exports to the UAE by another billion dollars," said Agarwal.

Describing the forthcoming visit to the UAE as the first attempt to boost trade and investment, Agarwal said: "This time our emphasis will be on attracting more investment to India. We will be highlighting the investment potential of India."

The move would also facilitate more Indo-UAE joint ventures in non-conventional energy sources, hydropower, solar power and food processing sectors.

The tie-up between the chambers would facilitate more information flow and boost exchange of delegations and participation in the trade fairs in India and the UAE.

The Indian delegation will include Assocham president K.K. Nohria, managing director Jindal Group of companies S.K. Jindal, Jammu Chambers of Commerce president Ram Sahai Kakar, Crompton Greaves managing director S.M. Trehan, Cosmos Consulting chairman K.L. Chugh and Ashok Gupta of Gupta Gems and Jewels.

Source: IANS
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