Prime Minister Narendra Modi will hold a virtual summit with the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi! and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan on February 18, 2022.
The Ministry of External Affairs said in a press release on 16 February that the two leaders would discuss bilateral cooperation and exchange views on regional and international issues of mutual interest.
It is expected that PM Modi and the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi will take forward the vision of historic and friendly relations between the two countries.
The important summit comes at a time when India is celebrating 75 years of its independence and the United Arab Emirates is celebrating the 50th anniversary of its establishment.
India-UAE Bilateral Relations
India and the United Arab Emirates have strengthened their bilateral ties in all areas in recent years.
The two countries also started negotiations for the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) in September 2021 and they have now been completed. According to the MEA, CEPA will take the economic and commercial engagement of India and the UAE to the next level.
The United Arab Emirates is already India’s third largest trading partner. The two countries share strong bilateral trade, investment and energy ties and are expected to boost this further.
Both the countries have also seen high level visits from both the sides. While Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited the United Arab Emirates in 2015, 2018 and 2019, the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi visited India in 2016 and 2017. There have also been several ministerial visits between the two sides, including three and one visit by the External Affairs Minister. Minister of Commerce and Industry for the UAE in 2021.
India and the United Arab Emirates also cooperated closely during the COVID-19 pandemic in critical areas including health and food security. The two sides also signed an air bubble arrangement during the pandemic in 2020 to ensure seamless movement of people between the two countries despite the challenges posed by COVID-19.
They are also strengthening their collaboration in new areas including startups, renewable energy and fintech. India participated in the Dubai Expo 2020 with one of the largest pavilions ever.
Indian Diaspora in UAE
The United Arab Emirates is home to a large Indian community numbering around 3.5 million. The UAE leadership has been highly appreciative of the contribution of the Indian community to the development of the country.
PM Modi also lauded the leadership of UAE for supporting the Indian community during the pandemic.