India to open Bharat Mart in Dubai as country plans to become exports hub


Prime Minister Narendra Modi with UAE Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum and other dignitaries at the inauguration of a warehousing facility 'Bharat Mart', in Dubai on Wednesday (ANI)

India’s overall exports, merchandise and services combined, in January are estimated to be USD 69.72 billion; US and UAE are two top destinations

Our Bureau

In a step towards bolstering bilateral trade between India and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Prime Minister and UAE Vice President Sheikh Mohamed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, virtually laid the foundation stone of Bharat Mart at Jebel Ali Free Trade Zone in Dubai on Wednesday.

Bharat Mart, a project to be constructed by DP World, holds the promise of transforming the landscape of trade relations between the two nations.

According to a press release, the two leaders expressed confidence that Bharat Mart will propel India-UAE bilateral trade further by leveraging Jebel Ali Port’s strategic location and strength in logistics.

During the virtual event, Prime Minister Modi underscored the pivotal role Bharat Mart is poised to play in fostering exports from India, particularly from the micro, small, and medium sectors.

By providing these sectors with a robust platform to showcase their products and engage with international buyers across regions such as the Gulf, West Asia, Africa, and Eurasia, Bharat Mart is expected to significantly boost India’s presence in global markets, read the press release.

PM Modi said, “Bharat Mart has the potential to play an important role in promoting exports of the micro, small and medium sectors of India by providing them an effective platform to reach out to international buyers in the Gulf, West Asia, Africa, and Eurasia”.

The foundation stone laying ceremony marks a milestone in the long-standing economic partnership between India and the UAE, further strengthening the ties between the two nations.

Bharat Mart’s establishment is anticipated to open up new avenues for collaboration and economic cooperation, driving mutual prosperity and growth.

As Bharat Mart takes shape in Jebel Ali, Dubai, it embodies the spirit of economic vibrancy and cooperation, symbolizing the shared vision of India and the UAE in fostering inclusive growth and development through robust trade relations.

Meanwhile, India’s overall exports, merchandise and services combined, in January are estimated to be USD 69.72 billion, exhibiting a positive growth of 8.49 per cent on a yearly basis, official data released on Thursday showed. The overall exports during January 2023 were worth USD 63.80 billion. Overall imports during the first months of 2023 increased to USD 70.46 billion as against USD 67.65 billion in the same month of the previous year.

Trade deficit narrowed to USD 0.75 billion as against USD 3.85 billion same month previous year, data showed. Merchandise exports in January grew to USD 36.92 billon as against USD 35.80 billion registered in the previous year. Merchandise imports grew to USD 54.41 billion as against USD 52.83 billion in January 2023.

With a growth of 26.4 per cent over the base year of 2013-14, the highest number of exporters was registered in 2022-23 at 1.63 lakh.

USA and UAE were top two destination countries with the highest exporters in 2022-23.

Commerce Secretary Sunil Barthwal said that his ministry has held meetings to discuss the ongoing conflict in the Red Sea area, with concerned ministries including the Department of Financial Services.

He said banks were asked to extend the credit to exporters where it should be extended.

“We have also asked Exim Bank and ECGC (Export Credit Guarantee Corporation of India) that insurance rates should not be increased so that it will not create an extra burden on exporters. These measures helped us to increase India’s exports,” the secretary said.

Barthwal said that they are also working on new territories and new products India can export its products and services.

“We have figured out huge number of products which we have been able to push for the first time,” he said.

Among various steps the government took was to launch a Production Linked Incentive (PLI) scheme in varied sectors, including electronic goods, to make Indian manufacturers globally competitive, attract investments, enhance exports, integrate India into the global supply chain and reduce dependency on imports. These seemed to have reaped dividends.

India’s overall exports in March ended the financial year 2022-2023 were worth USD 775.87 billion, a growth of over 14 per cent and almost USD 100 billion more than last year’s figures.

In 2022-23, India’s merchandise and services exports rose 6.74 per cent and 27.86 per cent to USD 450.43 billion and USD 325.44 billion, respectively.

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