UAE, India discuss food security

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Dubai, Apr 24 (UNI) Senior trade officials of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) today discussed the issue of food security, particularly trade policies on food commodities such as Basmati rice which is facing shortage here, with the visiting Commerce and Industry Minister Kamal Nath.

The UAE impressed upon the visiting delegation the need to meet the its monthly requirements and ensure sufficient supplies of basic food items.

The group explored the possibility of holding alternating meetings in either country every six months to follow up on the matters discussed and focus on new areas.

After the talks with Mr Nath at the Ministry of Economy, UAE Minister Sultan bin Saeed Al Mansouri said, ''We currently maintain very healthy relations with India; bilateral trade between our countries, excluding India's crude imports, is currently at 69.78 billion Emirati dirham and is expected to grow further by 30 per cent in 2010.'' Both our countries are witnessing rapid economic growth, so forming a strong partnership to leverage our unique strengths will help attain our mutual goal of sustainable development, he added.

Mr Nath attended a luncheon meeting discussing India's economy and business prospects at the Emirates Banker's Forum 2008, and a special event hosted by Ambassador Talmiz Ahmad, the Dubai Chamber, and the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry titled 'India and the Gulf-New Engagements for the 21st Century'.

He also discussed business opportunities in India with members of the Indian Business and Professional Council in Dubai.

''The UAE remains our strongest trading partner in the West Asia/North Africa region, representing around 70 per cent of our exports to Gulf countries. The productive talks I have had with business and industry will hopefully attract more investments and joint ventures that will help boost India-UAE trade to more than AED 91.82 billion in 2010,'' concluded Mr Nath.

UNI XC SR HT2005

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