By James Mathew
Some of the Kerala-based business groups are also keen to set up operations in the UAE
Business groups and entrepreneurs from northern Kerala are making a strong pitch for attracting investments from UAE to the region.
Agri and food processing, renewable energy and logistics are listed as among the focus areas which have great potential for UAE-based business groups to explore.
A blueprint on the potential business segments was discussed by a select group of north Kerala-based entrepreneurs and business groups at a closed door meeting with the visiting UAE Minister of Climate Change and Environment, Dr Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi at the weekend at Calicut in Kerala.
Some of the Kerala-based business groups includng Al Salama and ULCCS have also shown interest in setting up operations in the UAE and sought the emirate government’s help in getting the required infrastructure facilities as also finding strong local partners for this.
“Some of our member groups are keen to expand their operations to the UAE and sought the UAE minister’s help in getting emirate government’s support for this,” said Mehroof Manalody, chairman of the north Kerala chapter of CII (Confederation of Indian Industries).
He told Arabian Business: “Several constructive investment ideas and proposals were discussed at the meeting with the UAE minister and UAE ambassador to India. We plan to hold a follow-up meeting to take these proposals forward.”
Manalody said several business groups from northern Kerala have also informed the UAE minister about their plans to participate at the World Expo 2020 in Dubai.
“We told the UAE side that we will utilise our participation at the Dubai Expo to seriously explore investment opportunities in the UAE,” Manalody said.
Among the investment proposals discussed at the meeting was one by ULCCS (Uralungal Labour Contract Cooperative Society Ltd) to set up backend operations centres for UAE-based companies at their IT Park in northern Kerala.
“With northern Kerala having a sizeable Arabic speaking population, ULCCS has mooted the idea of some of the UAE companies moving their backend operations to Kerala,” a senior CII executive said.
The Kerala businessmen have also suggested that with northern Kerala being a major growing area for several agricultural products, the chamber executive said.
Logistics and infrastructure are the other major areas where Kerala is keen to attract investments from the UAE.