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UAE eager to increase energy exports to India: FM

posted on 19/05/2012: 2407 views

New Delhi - The United Arab Emirates is keen to increase its energy exports, as well as downstream investments in India, said Foreign Minister H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan.

"I would like to see more UAE energy exports to India especially when it comes to crude oil.....There are talks between our officials looking at these avenues and even further. We would like to see UAE presence in downstream investments in India, including petrochemicals," Sheikh Abdullah told reporters today during a joint press conference with Indian Minister of External Affairs S. M. Krishna.

Sheikh Abdullah and Krishna held wide-range of discussions on international, regional and bilateral issues including ways to boost trade ties, maritime security cooperation to tackle piracy and Indo-Pak ties.

Sheikh Abdullah also said that he was "pleased" to see the developing "vibrant" ties between India and Pakistan.

According to Press Trust of India (PTI), The two sides also discussed forthcoming 3rd India-Arab Economic Conclave to be hosted in Abu Dhabi on 21-22 May and the proposed 'Road Show' on investment in Abu Dhabi and Dubai that Indian officials intend to undertake in June to exchange information and clarify issues related to the investment climate in India. Also discussed were ways to increase cooperation to fight the "scourge" of piracy.

"Resolving piracy cannot come until we resolve Somalia," Sheikh Abdullah said.

He said building Somalia's capacity in every form is the way the issue of piracy can be tackled.

Underlining the country's need to increase its oil imports, Krishna, said, "The need to increase import of oil and other energy sources is of extreme critical importance and in UAE we have a dependable supplier which India needs so badly." He added that it was decided to set up a high-level joint task force on investment which will also look into securing more oil supplies from UAE that has assured it of "increased" energy exports.

H.H. Sheikh Hamed bin Zayed al Nahyan, Chief of the Abu Dhabi Crown Prince's Court and Managing Director of the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority and Commerce, Industries and Textiles Minister Anand Sharma will be leading the respective sides of the High Level Task Force, Krishna said.

Noting that the United Arab Emirates' leadership is now keen to address the issue of investments to bring it on par with the multi-faceted relations the two countries enjoy in all other sectors, Krishna said the 'High Level Joint Task Force' will explore further opportunities in investments.

Besides oil, UAE is also looking at investment opportunities in sectors like petrochemicals. Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (ADIA), one of the world's biggest sovereign wealth funds, is looking at investment opportunities in India, particularly in the real estate sector.

ADIA's investments in Indian real estate is around USD 500 million, largely through property and private equity funds, reports said, adding the fund is now scouting for direct investment opportunities.

India enjoys close and multifaceted relations with UAE and during the last three years, the two countries were each other's largest trading partners.

Bilateral trade during 2011-12 was US$ 67 billion. UAE contributes significantly to India's energy security and also hosts a large Indian community. – Emirates News Agency, WAM


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