India, UAE chalk out road map for investment

DUBAI: India and the UAE on Saturday discussed the possibility of increasing the number of flights under the ‘air bubble’ arrangement, while seeking to chalk out a robust investment roadmap for the coming months with investors showing interest in the government’s disinvestment and monetisation programmes.
“We have acted swiftly and most of the issues have been satisfactorily resolved… The joint task force will offer a common platform for continuous dialogue to remove bottlenecks that may come up from time to time and look at new opportunities,” commerce and industry minister Piyush Goyal said after meeting of the UAE-India high level Joint Task Force on Investments.
The minister, who also met companies such as DP World and the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, said UAE-based entities have moved beyond some of the legacy issues, such as the exit of Etisalat after the Supreme Court cancelled the 2G licences and problems encountered by Emaar, the real estate giant. “They have let bygones be bygones and look at the opportunities,” he said.
He said some of the companies that he met have suggested that in the monetisation programme for sectors such as roads, the projects that are offered should be large, while also evincing interest in the railways and logistics segments. “There were some suggestions that logistics cost can be reduced by 0.5-1 percentage point,” he said, adding that the logistics cost added up to 13% in India, compared to 8-9% in several other parts of the world.
Goyal said that the RBI has allowed Emirates NBD Bank to open two branches in the country.

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