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Sun 17 Jan 2010 07:20 AM

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UAE minister to tour India in bid to boost foreign trade

Sheikha Lubna Bint Khalid Al Qasimi to visit four cities, part of ministry's 2010 plan.

UAE minister to tour India in bid to boost foreign trade
TRADE BOOST: The UAEs foreign trade minister is to tour India next month as part of a plan to encourage further investments. (Getty Images - for illustrative purposes)

The UAE's foreign trade minister is to embark on a tour of India next month in an effort to encourage further investments in the Arab country.

The tour of four Indian cities by Sheikha Lubna Bint Khalid Al Qasimi is part of her ministry's plan for 2010 to promote the UAE overseas.

The UAE Ministry of Foreign Trade (MoFT) is targeting international trade fairs in China, South Africa, Kenya, Malaysia, Austria, Tunisia and Hong Kong during the next year, news agency WAM reported.

The UAE's involvement in the fairs in part of efforts to "strengthen the presence of UAE products and services in foreign markets, access new markets, and increase foreign investments in the UAE".

The ministry added that it also expects the exposure to the events "to enhance awareness on national industries, boost export opportunities and create new business partnerships between the Emirates and the rest of the world".

Abdullah Ahmed Al Saleh, director general of MoFT, said he has identified events including the China Import and Export Fair in April, the Privileges International Trade Show in Johannesburg in May, Expo 2010 Shanghai China, which starts in early June, the Malaysia International Trade Fair Show in November and the Hong Kong Small and Medium Enterprises Show in December.

He added that MoFT's efforts during 2009 had "limited the impact of the global financial crisis on the UAE's foreign trade sector".

The UAW placed 19th among the world's top 20 exporting countries, according to the World Trade Organisation's 2008 report, posting $242 billion in exports.

The country's exports grew 21 percent between 2000 and 2008, while its imports rose 21 percent in the same period.

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