Pinarayi Vijayan and Sheikh Nahyan Bin Mubarak Al Nahyan inaugurate the Kerala Week at the India Pavilion.
Pinarayi Vijayan, Chief Minister of Kerala along with Sheikh Nahyan Bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, UAE Minister of Tolerance and Coexistence, and Commissioner General of Expo 2020 Dubai on Friday inaugurated the Kerala state floor at India Pavilion in Expo 2020 Dubai.
Dr Thani Bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, UAE Minister of State for Foreign Trade, P. Rajeev, Minister for Law, Industries and Coir, Government of Kerala and Sunjay Sudhir, Ambassador of India to UAE were also present at the occasion.
Talking about the investment opportunities in Kerala, Pinarayi Vijayan, Chief Minister of Kerala said, “Kerala has consistently been among the top five states in India for social development and sustainability indicators as per the UN Sustainable Development Goals with its high Human Development Index, and a host of reforms initiated on the industrial front. I certainly hope that companies and businesses in the UAE would be able to take advantage of the business-friendly environment in Kerala to make our partnership stronger.”
“The Government of Kerala is committed to improving the ease of doing business in the state. Several initiatives including the simplification of procedures and enablement of digital engagement channels have also been introduced to strengthen the state’s economy,” he added.
Vijayan also said that the UAE has a massive diaspora of almost 1.2 million Malayali people living in the country. The Expo 2020 will, therefore, help in strengthening the base and cementing the future of both regions.
Dr Thani Bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, Minister of State for Foreign Trade, UAE said, “India ranks as the UAE’s number one trading partner that accounts for 40% of non-oil exports. India is a crucial trade partner for the UAE, and we look forward to strengthening our trade relations, especially, with the signing of the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA).”
P. Rajeev, Minister for Law, Industries & Coir, Govt. of Kerala said, “Today, Kerala stands distinct in terms of innovative steps taken towards industrialisation of the state. We have strengthened an ecosystem for attracting more investment and are working towards generating more employment opportunities. We hope the Expo 2020 Dubai will help us to showcase the credential and achievements of ‘God’s own country’ to the world.”
Sunjay Sudhir, Ambassador of India to UAE said, “The presence of Shri Vijayan means a lot to the large Malayali community in the UAE. Despite the pandemic, UAE stands out at a very bright spot by showcasing to the world how this whole situation is to be dealt with. I am confident that all the Indian states including Kerala will connect with the UAE for innovation, start-ups and investment opportunities.”
The event was also attended by Shri. A P M Mohammed Hanish IAS, Principal Secretary, Department of Industries & Commerce, Government of Kerala, Dr Aman Puri, Consul General of India in Dubai and Deputy Commissioner-General for India at Expo 2020, Shri M G Rajamanickam IAS, MD, Kerala State Industrial Development Corporation (KSIDC), Shri S Harikishore, IAS, Director of Industries & Commerce, Government of Kerala and Mr M A Yusuff Ali, Chairman, Lulu Group International & Vice Chairman, Non-Resident Keralites Affairs Department, Government of Kerala along with senior state Government officials, eminent industrialists based in the UAE and NRK business community.
The inaugural ceremony was followed by cultural performances by artists from Kerala. The event was attended by Pinarayi Vijayan, Reem Al Hashimy, UAE Minister of State for International Cooperation and Managing Director for the Expo 2020 Dubai, Sunjay Sudhir along with Malayalam cinema star & producer Mammootty.
The Kerala Week at India Pavilion will conclude on 10th February 2022.
The UAE and south Indian state of kerala have “a very close heart-to-heart relationship,” the state’s Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said recently to the Emirates News Agency (WAM).
“kerala-UAE relations are not something formal. It is a very close heart-to-heart to relationship. All top UAE officials whom I met here told me that kerala and Keralites occupy a special place in their heart. I did not hear this touching comment from one official but from all,” said Vijayan.
In an exclusive interview with WAM in Dubai on Thursday, he added that the frank and friendly conversations offered by the Emirati officials in his meetings with them reiterated the deep relationship.
“They promised to support the developmental projects in kerala. After all, they have always expressed their love and solidarity towards kerala whenever the state is in need, especially when the devastating floods occurred in 2018 and 2019,” he said.
More than three million Indians constitute the largest expatriate community in the UAE; more than one million of them are Keralites, according to the Indian official.