An Outlook on India- UAE Business Interests

UAE-INDIA Business Outlook

Being one of the closely related countries, the trade relationship between India and UAE has significantly developed over the last 20 years. The business ties have grown stronger by exchange of culture, commodities and ideas. It started with the barter of pearls for cotton and dry fruits for grains many years ago. Today India– UAE bilateral trade is close to US$75 billion (Dh275.5bn), making the UAE one of India’s leading trade partners.

UAE mainly imports gems and jewelry, vegetables, fruits, spices, etc from India. UAE’s exports to India mainly include crude & petroleum products, gold & silver, pearls, etc. Growing Indo-UAE economic and commercial relations contribute valuable stability and strength to bilateral relationship between the two countries. The UAE enjoys a broad and comprehensive economic relationship with India, based on mutual interests.

 COUNTRY                         IMPORT                         EXPORT


Crude, petroleum products, gold &  silver,  pearls,  precious  and semi precious stones, metal ores & metal scrap, electronics goods and transport equipment.

Gems and jewelry, vegetables, fruits, spices, engineering goods, tea, meat and its preparation, rice, textiles and apparel and chemicals.

UAE Gems and jewelry, vegetables, fruit, spices, engineering goods, tea, meat and its preparation, rice,  textiles  and  apparel  and chemicals.

Crude, petroleum products, gold & silver, pearls, precious and semi precious stones, metal ores & metal scrap, electronics goods and transport equipment.


India is expected to become UAE’s biggest export destination by 2030, with a forecast for estimated goods at 14%. Increased inward investment from the UAE could help India to create the conditions for growth in the long term.

The main reason for strong INDO-UAE economic ties is the huge expatriate Indian population in UAE. Almost 2 million Indian expatriates currently live and work in the UAE, comprising more than 30 per cent of the national population and constituting the Emirates’ largest expatriate group. The profile of the company has changed with the evolving needs of the country: In the 1970s and 1980s, when the principal requirement here was for blue – collar workers, the Indian community was blue – collar to the extent of 85-90%, with a negligible percentage of professionals.

 In the 1990s, as the need for professionals to meet the needs of the expanding service sector emerged, the profile of the community changed, and today, 15 to 20% of the Indian community is made up of professionally qualified personnel. The Indian community has played a major role in the economic development of the UAE over the last 35 years. The total remittances to India from the UAE in 2008-09 were about US$ 10-12 billion, which is around one third of all the total remittances from the GCC countries to India which is around US$30 billion.

Recent political development in India has opened more doors to strengthen trade ties between UAE and India. Both countries are working towards giving the final shape to a Bilateral Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (BIPPA), to enhance investments between the two countries; the Department of Economic Development (DED), UAE has said. The agreement is aimed at driving investments into India from the UAE across different sectors, including construction, downstream manufacturing in the petroleum and natural gas sector, as well as agriculture and food processing.

Saed Al Awadi, CEO of Dubai Export, the agency of the Department of Economic Development in Dubai, was of the opinion that “This agreement will enhance the economic ties between the two countries further

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