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Saturday, Jan 10, 2004

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India, Gulf nations keen to expand trade ties

Our Bureau

Hyderabad , Jan. 9

INDIA and the Gulf Cooperation Council have vowed to improve bilateral trade and explore business opportunities in the areas of oil and gas, knowledge-based products, education, health and other investments.

Representatives from India and the Arab nations met at the Networking meeting at the ongoing three-day Partnership Summit to explore the business opportunities in the two regions.

Delivering the keynote address, Mr R.M. Abhyankar, Secretary (Asia and North Africa), Ministry of External Affairs, said what was missing in the bilateral trade was major projects involving all the GCC member nations.

"We see openings in the oil and gas sector and in projects that ensure energy security in India," he said.

"We can work for synergy to develop knowledge-based projects," he said.

The Arab nations could also channelise their financial resources, parked in the Western banks, and invest in India.

Stating that many Arab nationals were sending their children to India for studies, he asked the Indian education sector to respond to this demand. "Health and tourism, too, offer vast opportunities," he said.

Mr Salem Ben Nasser Al Ismaily, Executive President of the Omani Centre for Investment Promotion and Export Development, called for facilitation of easy movement of people and goods.

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