India vows red carpet, not red tape, for UAE money; Dubai model for GIFT city

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India is creating its first smart city and its first international financial centre combined in one, and has much to learn from Dubai in that respect, according to a high powered Indian government delegation on a visit to the UAE.

“In India, we are currently working on creating India’s first smart city – which is also an International Financial Centre – GIFT (Gujarat International Financial and Tech city), said Jayant Sinha, Indian Union Minister of State for Finance, who led the delegation currently on a visit to the UAE.

Sinha addressed UAE business leaders on investment opportunities in India as well as visited the region’s biggest and oldest financial hub, the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC).

“I was happy to share my thoughts with DIFC officials regarding this new project and also understood the basic structure of DIFC and key components. We look forward to active cooperation from our DIFC counterparts to help us make GIFT a success,” Sinha said.

Looking to acquire DIFC’s best practices in creating a successful financial hub with world-class infrastructure, the delegation was hosted by Essa Kazim, DIFC Governor. Sinha was accompanied by Anurag Bhushan, Consul-General of India and T.P. Seetharam, Indian Ambassador, among others.

“It is indeed an honour to share our expertise with the Indian government and contribute to the country’s efforts in countering complex financial challenges. Today’s engagement presented us with an opportunity to establish greater synergies and share best practices for the wider benefit of the communities in both countries,” said Essa Kazim.

“The UAE and India share a mutual vision of working towards sustainable economic growth. Over the past 10 years, DIFC has recorded phenomenal progress and the contribution of Indian companies to this journey has indeed been noteworthy,” he added.

In a subsequent gathering of the UAE’s business leaders at the Taj Dubai hotel yesterday, Sinha discussed the ‘Make In India’ campaign as well as investment opportunities in India.

“As honourable Prime Minister said, we will roll the red carpet for the foreign investors and not red tapism. This belief forms a part of the ‘Make in India’ campaign,” said Sinha as he highlighted the role of India as one of the fastest growing economies in the world and outlined the investment opportunities available to investors across sectors.

“The Indian government believes in empowerment of the Indian people over merely providing entitlements. It is a pro-business and pro-poor government working towards creating jobs, which will eventually spur India’s GDP growth rate to 8 to 9 per cent,” Sinha added.

“We are greatly encouraged by the series of economic reforms that have been undertaken by the Indian government,” said Sheikh Sultan bin Sooud Al Qassemi, Chairperson, Barjeel Geojit Securities, which hosted the event along with Alpen Capital (ME).

“The historic economic cooperation between the UAE and India is a prime example of our strong partnership, but we believe that there are many further unexplored opportunities,” he noted.

The key business event was held under the patronage of the Consul General of India in the UAE and in association with the GCC Chapter of Assocham (Associated Chamber of Commerce and Industry of India), India’s apex Knowledge Chamber.

“As one of India’s largest trading partners, GCC countries and foremost UAE provide tremendous potential for collaboration in keys sectors such as power, oil & gas, infrastructure, healthcare, tourism and sovereign investments, amongst others,” said Rana Kapoor, Assocham President.

“India is emerging as the preferred investment destination and large foreign direct investment are now being directed into various sectors of India. The UAE being one of the largest trading partners of India, it is imperative to strengthen this relationship further and facilitate more investment flows between the two countries,” said Anurag Bhushan, Consul General of India in UAE.

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