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UAE to cement India ties

posted on 26/03/2007: 1991 views

New Delhi - His Highness Sheikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, arrived here yesterday on a two-day official visit.

"Our visit to India reflects the UAE's keenness to extend new bridges of communication between the two countries and explore broader avenues of cooperation in economic and technological sectors in line with historic ties between the two peoples," Sheikh Mohammad said in a statement upon arrival.

"We hope the visit will be fruitful and result in signing agreements that will positively reflect on bilateral ties in the present and future.”We are confident that the visit will be fruitful, especially since it comes in the wake of new regional and international scenarios," Sheikh Mohammad said.

He said positive facts on the ground encourage both the UAE and India to move their fruitful cooperation and bilateral ties forward and establish strategic partnerships in many feasible sectors.

Sheikh Mohammad will be accorded a ceremonial welcome on the forecourts of the Rashtrapati Bhavan (Presidential Palace) today. President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam and Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh will formally receive him.

Indian officials described Sheikh Mohammad's visit as highly significant. "It's a landmark visit. Sheikh Mohammad is a visionary leader and has been playing a significant role in Asia. Although India-UAE ties are very old, we are having the best of ties right now," India's Minister of State for External Affairs E. Ahamed told Gulf News. He hailed Sheikh Mohammad as the architect of improved Indo-UAE relations.

After the welcome at the presidential palace, Sheikh Mohammad will address a gathering of top Indian business leaders. He will also hold meetings with Abdul Kalam, Manmohan Singh, ruling United Progressive Alliance chairperson Sonia Gandhi, Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee and leader of the opposition Lal Krishna Advani.

The two countries will sign various agreements in order to give a further boost to Indo-UAE ties.

"Sheikh Mohammad has tremendous foresight and experience. We expect his visit would give more synergy to the booming trade ties between the countries. We will try and convince him that India is a good partner to do business with and hope it will lead to further momentum to UAE investment in India and Indian industries investing in the UAE," Arun Patankar, co-chairman of the Confederation of Indian Industries Gulf Council, said. (Gulf News - With additional inputs from WAM)


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