Prime Minister Narendra Modi and UAE President Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, in their bilateral meeting on Tuesday, are expected to take up strengthening of ties in a number of economic areas including energy security, energy trade, ports, railways and maritime logistics, digital infrastructure, capital flows and fintech connectivity, according to the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA).

Modi, who will be in the UAE on a two-day official visit on February 13-14, will also meet the Vice President, Prime Minister, and Defence Minister of the UAE Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum and participate in the World Government Summit 2024 in Dubai, where he is to deliver a special keynote address.

“Currently the two sides are busy discussing various understandings and agreements that can be signed and exchange during the visit. Broadly speaking, in terms of the areas of importance, they will be continuing to build on what the two sides have signed in the past few years,” Foreign Secretary Vinay Kwatra said at an official briefing on Monday.

These include, understandings in the field of energy, both related to energy security and energy trade, he said. There would also be some understandings and documents in the larger sector of ports, maritime and logistics. 

Digital cooperation

“Since digital cooperation between the two economies is an important part of our partnership, we are also seeing if we can come to an understanding on the investment part of the field of digital infrastructure,” he said.

Arrangement for the promotion and protection of capital inflows between the two economies and  fintech connectivity will also be discussed. “It would be seen how the two sides can cooperate on fintech platforms as well as on fintech products,” Kwatra specified.

The UAE is India’s third largest trading partner with bilateral trade of about $85 billion in 2022-23. The country is India’s second largest export destination, the Foreign Secretary pointed out. The UAE is also among the top four investors in India in terms of foreign direct investments in 2022-23. About 3.5 million strong Indian community forms the largest expatriate group in UAE.

This will be Modi’s seventh visit to the UAE since 2015 and the third in the last eight months.