Modi to visit UAE Aug 16-17 in first PM visit in 34 years

New Delhi/Abu Dhabi, Aug 10 (IANS) Prime Minister Narendra Modi is to visit the United Arab Emirates on August 16-17, in the first visit by an Indian prime minister to the Gulf nation in 34 years.

The Indian community is gearing up to give Modi a momentous reception at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium grounds that is expected to draw more than 40,000 people.

Modi is expected to arrive in Abu Dhabi on August 16 and will visit Dubai the next day.

He will be the first Indian prime minister to visit the UAE after Indira Gandhi, who visited the country in 1981.

The visit is expected to further boost the economic, cultural and social ties between India and the Arab country.

Talks are set to focus on trade, investment and security and the Indian diaspora, said sources.

India-UAE trade crossed $59 billion in 2014-15, making the country India’s third largest trading partner after China and the US.

India was UAE’s largest non-oil trading partner in 2014. Both countries signed a Bilateral Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (BIPA) in 2013.

UAE is home to an Indian expatriate community of around 2.5 million.

Indians in the UAE are the largest remitters globally, and remitted $12.64 billion to their home country in 2014. India is also the third largest source of tourists travelling to the UAE.

The Indian community is planning a spectacular reception on August 17 evening for Modi at the Dubai Cricket Stadium.

The Indian Community Welfare Committee (ICWC), which is spearheading preparations for the reception, said it is making arrangements to transport thousands of community members to the stadium from the nearest Metro stations as well as from other landmark points, including The Dubai Mall and Dubai Internet City.



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