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Trans-continental trade corridor to payment system, here are details about 8 MoUs signed between India, UAE

India and the UAE signed at least eight agreements, including a Bilateral Investment Treaty, an Intergovernmental Framework Agreement on the India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor and MoUs linking payment systems, following talks between PM Narendra Modi and the President.

Ajeet Kumar Edited By: Ajeet Kumar @Ajeet1994 Abu Dhabi Updated on: February 14, 2024 12:39 IST
PM Narendra Modi and UAE President Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan in Abu Dhabi
Image Source : X/@NARENDRAMODI PM Narendra Modi and UAE President Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan in Abu Dhabi

Abu Dhabi: India and the United Arab Emirates on Tuesday signed an agreement on a trade corridor that aims to connect Europe with India through parts of the Middle East by sea and rail, an ambitious plan backed by the US and the European Union. The announcement of the framework agreement, reached during a visit by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to the Gulf state, was released in a statement by the Indian foreign ministry, although few details on what the sides had agreed on were made public. "This would build on previous understandings and cooperation on this matter and foster India and the UAE cooperation furthering regional connectivity," the ministry statement said.

The corridor, announced last September on the sidelines of the G20 summit in New Delhi, aims to extend from India across the Arabian Sea to the United Arab Emirates and through Saudi Arabia before connecting through Jordan and Israel to Europe. The ministry's statement, however, made no mention of any country apart from India and the UAE, a regional Gulf Arab power, whose ties are built on over a century of trade links.

PM Modi holds bilateral with UAE President 

The agreement on the India-Middle East Economic Corridor comes amid the more than four-month war in Gaza that has derailed US-backed plans to further integrate Israel with its Arab neighbours. Saudi Arabia has halted normalisation plans. The major development came after PM Modi met with UAE President Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed al Nahyan, who the Indian leader often refers to as his brother.

"Today, our region is going through a difficult time but because of our relationship with you, we are building a lot of hope and looking forward to a future with India that is on par with our ambitions," Sheikh Mohamed said at a meeting with Modi on Tuesday, according to a video shared on Modi's YouTube channel.

During the discussion, the two leaders held one-on-one and delegation-level talks. They reviewed the bilateral partnership and discussed new areas of cooperation. They welcomed the deepening of the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership across sectors, including trade and investment, digital infrastructure, fintech, energy, infrastructure, culture and people-to-people ties. Discussions also covered regional and global issues.

The two leaders witnessed the exchange of the following:

Bilateral Investment Treaty: According to the statement released by the MEA, the agreement will be a key enabler for further promoting investments in both countries. India has signed both a Bilateral Investment Treaty and a Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement with UAE.

MoU on cooperation in the field of electricity interconnection and trade: This opens new areas of collaboration in the field of energy, including energy security and energy trade.

Inter-governmental Framework Agreement concerning Cooperation for the Empowerment and Operation of the India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor: This would build on previous understandings and cooperation on this matter and foster India and the UAE cooperation furthering regional connectivity.

MoU on Cooperation in Digital Infrastructure Projects: This will create a framework for wide-ranging cooperation, including investment cooperation, in the digital infrastructure sector and also facilitate the sharing of technical knowledge, skills and expertise.

Cooperation Protocol between the National Library and Archives of the UAE and the National Archives of India: This protocol will shape extensive bilateral cooperation in this field including restoration and preservation of archival material.

MoU on Development of National Maritime Heritage Complex (NMHC): This would foster engagement between the two countries aimed at supporting of the Maritime Heritage Complex at Lothal, Gujarat.

Agreement on interlinking of the instant payment platforms - UPI (India) and AANI (UAE): This will facilitate seamless cross-border transactions between the two countries. This follows the MoU on interlinking payment and messaging systems signed in July last year during Hon’ble PM’s visit to Abu Dhabi.

Agreement on inter-linking domestic debit/credit cards - RuPay (India) with JAYWAN (UAE): An important step in building financial sector cooperation, this will enhance the universal acceptance of RuPay across the UAE.

Prime Minister congratulated President Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan on the launch of UAE’s domestic card JAYWAN, which is based on the digital RuPay credit and debit card stack. The leaders witnessed a transaction made using the JAYWAN card.

The leaders also discussed the strengthening of energy partnerships. They appreciated that in addition to the UAE being among the largest sources of crude and LPG, India is now entering into long-term contracts for LNG, according to MEA.

Ahead of the visit, RITES Limited signed an agreement with Abu Dhabi Ports Company and Gujarat Maritime Board with Abu Dhabi Ports Company. These would help in building port infrastructure and further enhance connectivity between the two countries, said MEA in a statement. 

(With inputs from agency)

Also Read: India will become third-largest economy in my 3rd term, guarantees PM Modi in Abu Dhabi

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