India-UAE CEPA’s Joint Committee Meeting Concludes

By 2030, India and the UAE plan to more than increase their non-petroleum trade to USD 100 billion.

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India and the UAE successfully convened the first Joint Committee (JC) meeting of the India-UAE CEPA. During the JC, both parties, among other things, reviewed the bilateral trade under the CEPA, agreed to operationalize the established committees, subcommittees, and technical council under the CEPA, agreed on the quarterly exchange of preferential trade data, discussed various issues related to the implementation of the Agreement, and agreed to address any issue that may potentially act as a barrier to CEPA implementation or its u

The two parties also discussed WTO-related issues. The United Arab Emirates, Abu Dhabi, is set to host the 13th Ministerial Conference of the WTO (MC13) the week of February 26.

On June 11 and 12, 2023, a high-level delegation from the UAE, led by H.E. Dr. Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, Minister of State for Foreign Trade of the UAE, visited India. The delegation was made up of senior government officials and members of the UAE business community. In the presence of the Ministers, the parties signed the agreed-upon minutes of the Joint Committee’s first meeting of the India-UAE Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement.

Earlier today in New Delhi, Shri Piyush Goyal, the Union Minister of Commerce and Industry, Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, and Textiles, Government of India, had a visit from His Excellency Dr. Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, Minister of State for Foreign Trade of the UAE. During the visit, the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) between India and the UAE was implemented one year ago, which also served as the India leg of the celebration. Both Ministers spoke at a joint press conference about the outcomes and successful end of the Joint Committee’s first meeting. At the press conference, Shri Goyal stated that the two nations had decided to increase non-petroleum product trade from USD 48 billion to USD 100 billion by 2030.

Both ministers participated in a business-to-business event that the Department of Commerce and the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) jointly sponsored. Union Minister of Commerce and Industry, Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, and Textiles Shri Piyush Goyal stressed that this ground-breaking Agreement has significantly changed the India-UAE partnership by giving an already strong and close relationship new energy and momentum. The Minister further emphasised that early benefits from the Agreement have already begun to materialise, with bilateral trade between India and the UAE expanding at around 16.5% and reaching an all-time high of over USD 84.84 billion during FY 2023–23.

According to Shri Goyal, India’s exports to the UAE saw a spectacular 12% growth, rising to USD 31.6 billion in 2022–2023. He urged companies on both sides to establish more connections and capitalise on this momentum. Other significant initiatives that are under discussion between the two parties were also mentioned by him, including Virtual Trade Corridors, the potential establishment of a GIFT City, Gujarat, office for the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, a partnership with UPI, and the possible creation of a productive system for direct Rupee-Dirham trade.

Dr. Thani bin Zeyoudi, the UAE’s Minister of State for Foreign Trade, reaffirmed the desire of the UAE Government and its leadership to further advance bilateral ties with India by cooperating in all areas important to both nations. He also underlined the government’s and ministry’s commitment to collaborating closely with the Indian side in the same spirit of mutual trust, cooperation, and welfare for the two nations’ populations.

The UAE delegation’s visit emphasised the importance of the bilateral economic relations, according to Commerce Secretary Shri Sunil Barthwal in his statements of welcome.

Senior officials from both sides and representatives from the business communities in India and the UAE were present at the B2B event.