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UAE Ministry of Finance hosts CEPA beyond trade event to celebrate India-UAE FTA partnership anniversary

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The UAE Ministry of Economy has organized a special event called CEPA Beyond Trade to celebrate the first anniversary of the UAE-India Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA). The event took place on the sidelines of the  Annual Investment Meeting (AIM) at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Center on May 8th and will highlight the positive impact of the agreement on commercial and cultural exchange between the two nations over the past 12 months.

CEPA Beyond Trade featured panel discussions with industry leaders from both the UAE and India who will discuss the successes of the partnership and collaborations in various areas such as food, fashion, and the arts. The event also included a street food festival, fashion display, and live entertainment.

Speaking on the occasion  Dr. Thani Al Zeyoudi, UAE Minister of State for Foreign Trade said that the UAE-India CEPA will be regarded as not only a turning point in bilateral relations but a model for international collaboration. “The UAE-India CEPA is a milestone for both nations, establishing a hugely important platform for long-term, sustainable growth by increasing market access for our respective exporters, industrialists and investors. Most importantly, though, the deal has consolidated a friendship of inestimable value to the UAE and opened up new pathways for economic and cultural collaboration. The UAE-India CEPA is an exciting alliance for growth – one that will bind our nations ever closer together and generate limitless opportunities for our people.”

 Dr. Thani Al Zeyoudi believes that the UAE-India CEPA will be regarded as not only a turning point in bilateral relations but a model for international collaboration in the post-Covid period. “The UAE-India CEPA is a milestone for both nations, establishing a hugely important platform for long-term, sustainable growth by increasing market access for our respective exporters, industrialists and investors. Most importantly, though, the deal has consolidated a friendship of inestimable value to the UAE and opened up new pathways for economic and cultural collaboration. The UAE-India CEPA is an exciting alliance for growth – one that will bind our nations ever closer together and generate limitless opportunities for our people.”  There were also panel discussions on UAE and India’s historic and Future trade bond, and on fashion futures. Secretary DPIIT Rajesh Kumar singh also spoke on the occasion. 

The UAE-India Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) was implemented on May 1st, 2022, and marked the UAE’s first bilateral trade agreement. It was a key component of the UAE’s new foreign trade strategy, aimed at forging closer relationships with strategic partners worldwide to boost economic recovery and secure vital supply chains. The CEPA facilitated the removal or reduction of tariffs on more than 80 percent of product lines, eliminated trade barriers, promoted investment flows into priority sectors, and provided a platform for SME cooperation and expansion.

During the past one year, CEPA has made a significant impact on India’s Bilateral Trade with the UAE and particularly India’s Exports to the UAE (Oil and Non-Oil). The Bilateral Trade between India and the UAE has touched historic highs during FY 2022-23. Trade has increased from US$ 72.9 billion (Apr 21-Mar 2022) to US$ 84.5 billion (Apr 22-Mar 2023) registering a year-on-year increase of 16%.

Exports from India to the UAE have also registered a multiyear high. During April-March period, Indian exports to the UAE increased from US$ 28 bn to US$ 31.3 bn; an increase of around US$ 3.3 billion; or 11.8% year-on-year growth in percentage terms. During the same period, growth in India’s global exports was 5.3%, excluding the UAE, India’s global exports grew at 4.8 percent

Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) has partnered with the Ministry of the Economy to become a significant sponsor of the CEPA Beyond Trade event. The event is also supported by AIM, the Lulu Group, and the Indian People’s Forum (IPF).

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