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Business Leaders Forum Seeks Closer Business-to-Business Tie up with Indian Entities to Boost Investment into India

Tuesday, May 16, 2017/ Editor -  

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UAE businesses could benefit from the Indian growth story, officials say

Date: Dubai, UAE, May 16, 2017 

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1.    Total FDI investments India received during April – September 2016 rose 30 per cent year-on-year to US$21.6 billion 
 
2.    UAE is set to invest US$75 billion into Indian economy

Officials of the Business Leaders Forum, the newly-formed business group backed by the UAE Ministry of Economy and the Indian Embassy and Consulate, has sought greater business-to-business collaboration with Indian companies, following the strong government-to-government collaboration between India and the UAE that is resulting in a US$75 billion (Dh275 billion) UAE investment into India.
 
“Following a strong government-to-government bilateral trade, economic and strategic cooperation between the governments of India and the UAE in recent years, it’s time for the business-to-business collaboration to take off,” Padmashree Dr Azad Moopen, President of Business Leaders Forum, told a gathering of business leaders at a dinner hosted in honour of the visiting delegation of the Confederation of Indian Industries (CII) on Monday evening.
 
India has emerged as the fastest growing major economy in the world as per the Central Statistics Organisation (CSO) and International Monetary Fund (IMF). The Government of India has forecasted that the Indian economy will grow by 7.1 per cent in FY 2016-17. As per the Economic Survey 2016-17, the Indian economy should grow between 6.75 and 7.5 per cent in FY 2017-18. 
 
“As Indian economic growth accelerates, it needs investment and businesses in the UAE are in a unique position to support India’s economic growth while benefitting from the growing opportunities,” he said.
 
A 13-member delegation led by CII President Shobana Kamineni and President-Designate Rakesh Bharti Mittal were on a two-day visit to the UAE where they met with Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai and Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nakyan, UAE Minister of Community, Youth and Social Development as well as senior government officials and business leaders.
 
Indian Consul General Vipul underlined the need for closer cooperation and praised the efforts of the Business Leaders Forum for its initiatives. He also mentioned that the Indian missions is closely working with BLF on various investment initiatives. 
 
Shobana Kamineni, President of CII, said, India needs to create five million jobs every year in order to outgrow China. “Last year, we created 3.7 million jobs, less than what we need. As businesses and industries, we are wealth creator, we provide livelihood by creating jobs,” she said. “So, India will need more investment from the private sectors – especially in infrastructure, education, healthcare, industries and real estate to be able to shelter the new urban population.
 
“India is soon going to become the world’s third largest automaker in the world – as industrialisation picks up. However, our industrial policy is outdated and needs to be changed to incorporate the new developments, such as the Fourth Industrial Revolution or Industries 4.0 – artificial intelligence, robotics, cyber security, big data, bio-technology among other new developments.”
 
According to Indian Government’s Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP), the total FDI investments India received during April - September 2016 rose 30 per cent year-on-year to US$21.6 billion, indicating that government's effort to improve ease of doing business and relaxation in FDI norms is yielding results.
 
Data for April - September 2016 indicates that the services sector attracted the highest FDI equity inflow of $5.29 billion, followed by telecommunications – $2.79 billion, and trading – $ 1.48 billion. 
 
“India is one of the unhealthiest countries in the world and we need to improve public health. Indian-owned healthcare businesses in the UAE should invest in our country to provide good healthcare services. It’s a good time to come back to India and participate in its growth.” She said. 
 
According to United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) World Investment Report 2016, India acquired 10th slot in the top 10 countries attracting highest FDI inflows globally in 2015. The report also mentioned that among the investment promotion agencies, India has moved up by one rank to become the sixth most preferred investment destination.
 
India will require around US$1 trillion in the 12th Five-Year Plan (2012–17), to fund infrastructure growth covering sectors such as highways, ports and airways. 
 
Sudesh Aggarwal, BLF Board Member and Chairman of the Indian Trade and exhibition Centre (ITEC), said, BLF would like to seek greater engagement between businesses and to help streamline investment. “We have identified four economic sectors for greater collaboration and channelling investment that will help Indian economy grow faster and we would extend this to other sectors as well,” he said.

In her welcome address the Secretaey general of BLF & Director General of ITEC m.e Ms Sripriyaa kumaria mentioned that India and the UAE announced the formation of the Business Leaders Forum on March 8, 2017, to augment bilateral investments between both countries. BLF will work towards strengthening ties between bothcountries and enhancing economic cooperation and investments. BLF has already announced the facilitation of formation of consortium of Dh1 billion and in the days to come BLF will facilitate and help Channelize investments between the 2 countries. She also mentioned that BLF has identified education, Industry, hospitality, health care, construction and infrastructure and investments as major focus areas where we shall be working to begin with. 

With the involvement of the Indian and Emirati business leaders and business leaders in UAE who are friends of India and UAE, BLF will help investors tap into the growth potential in the India-UAE corridor. The forum is the outcome of joint efforts of the UAE Ministry of Economy and the Indian diplomatic missions in the UAE' she said. 


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