Dubai: President Pratibha Patil, on a five-day visit to the UAE, will inaugurate an India trade and exhibition centre, a non-profit organisation aimed at facilitating Indian businesses in the region.
The India Trade and Exhibition Centre will be opened on Thursday by the President in the emirate of Sharjah, officials said.
The Centre, set up under the auspices of the Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI), aims to create new opportunities to boost the already burgeoning trade ties between India and the UAE with support from the respective governments.
The Centre also aims to provide a platform for Indian entrepreneurs to expand into the lucrative Gulf and MENA (Middle East and North Africa) markets and will play a role in attracting foreign investments to India.
It will be a one-stop shop that links up state governments, export promotion councils, corporates, SMEs and Indian businessmen to the Gulf and MENA region.
"A new chapter will be added to the historic ties between India and the UAE when President Pratibha Patil inaugurates the Centre," Sudesh Aggarwal, Chairman of ITEC, said.
He said with India scaling new heights in economic growth, exciting times are ahead.
"We will try and encourage new entrepreneurs to enter the market and test the waters at bare nominal cost.
"What is good for business is good for the Centre. With the world economy no longer in free fall after enduring its deepest financial bloodbath since the Depression, we can expect trade to grow the world over. The pace will pick up with time," he added.
He said the Centre will create new avenues for businesses.
"Trade opportunities are unlimited in this part of the world and it is a question of making their best use. We will provide vital links and help the Indian businessmen market their products at our exhibition halls," he said.
Aggarwal lauded the support of Indian Embassy in the UAE, the Indian Consulate in Dubai, ASSOCHAM in India and the Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry for playing a key role in the establishment of the centre and providing inputs and moral support.
The Centre, he said, could provide a platform for the businessmen to interact with a cross section of the Indian community in the UAE, which, according to estimates, numbers nearly 1.75 million and is the largest expatriate community in the country.
The Indian community`s role and contribution in the development of the UAE has been widely acknowledged.