India sees the UAE as a key partner to achieve its ambitious dream of achieving a $5 trillion economy, Prime Minister Narendra Modi told state news agency WAM in an interview.

Modi, who arrived Friday in the UAE on a two-day visit and was welcomed by Khaldoon Khalifa Al Mubarak, chairman of Abu Dhabi Executive Affairs Authority, at Abu Dhabi International Airport, said: “India has embarked on the ambitious, yet achievable, path to be a $5 trillion economy by 2024-25.

“We are targeting about $1.7 trillion dollar worth of investments in the coming five years. To achieve this vision, the government is working to promote inflows from domestic as well as foreign sources,” the Prime Minister said.

He said that the UAE-India relations are “at their best ever”, adding that the UAE investments in key sectors in India are growing.

“There has been an increasing interest in investments in India in sectors ranging from renewable energy, food, ports, airports, defence manufacturing and other sectors,” Modi told WAM.

“UAE investments in [sectors such as] infrastructure and housing are being enhanced. The UAE is our third largest trade partner with about $60 billion bilateral trade in 2018-19. Many of our companies are investing here in UAE. Both countries are working closely and vigorously to implement the commitment of $75 billion investment by UAE in India.

“I feel immensely proud of conveying that India-UAE relations are at their best ever,” he added.

He highlighted the importance of the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership Agreement signed during the visit of Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, to India in January 2017.

“Since then we have made enormous progress in implementing agreements signed in key areas, including defence, security, investment in infrastructure, energy and more. In other words, our relations are truly multi-dimensional,” Modi said.

The Prime Minister said he believes that his third visit to the UAE reflects the desire and will of the two countries to sustain the momentum achieved in the bilateral relationship.

“In this visit, I look forward to further strengthening our all-round cooperation… We have a number of important matters to discuss regarding bilateral relations as well as the regional and global situation. I am confident that my visit will serve to further strengthen our robust and vibrant relations.

“I am very upbeat about the trajectory of our relations and for opening up new areas of cooperation. I think there exist huge potential to make this cooperation a win-win (partnership) for both countries,” he added.

About the Order of Zayed, the highest civilian award of the UAE, which he is receiving on Saturday, Modi said: “It is an honour of special significance for me and my fellow 1.3 billion Indians.”

About Indian community in the UAE, he added: “We are immensely proud that the rich contribution of our community to building a modern, diverse and vibrant UAE are acknowledged and appreciated by the leadership of the UAE.

“Apart from the Indians whose remittances sustain their families back home in India, we are also witnessing a steady increase in investments into India by some of the top Indian business leaders in UAE.

“I extend my deepest appreciation to the leadership of UAE for looking after the well-being of the Indian diaspora here like a true guardian. I would also like to thank the leadership of UAE for the steps taken recently to provide long-term visas and other benefits to expatriates.” More

By Sam Bridge

ARABIAN BUSINESS

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