India, UAE to boost relations, join hands to work in Africa

India and UAE agreed to work together in third countries, particularly in Africa, in what signals a deepening relationship that has been stewarded by PM Narendra ModiThe discussions between Modi and the visiting UAE foreign minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan saw the Indian leader commit to take ties to new heights. Al Nahyan, who arrived here on Sunday, held talks with external affairs minister S Jaishankar on Monday. 


Al Nahyan’s visit comes just after the new Modi government has taken office. UAE has grown to become India’s close ally in the Gulf and, along with Saudi Arabia, has been a breakthrough for Indian diplomacy. 


With increasing defence and security relations India and UAE may find avenues for greater cooperation in the current situation. With India having to turn off the tap for Iranian oil, UAE and Saudi Arabia have been increasing oil supplies to India. Increasingly, Indian warships are patrolling the Gulf of Oman and Strait of Hormuz to provide security to Indian ships. Al Nahyan would have also briefed the Indian government about the UAE’s withdrawal from the war in Yemen, which has caused them enormous reputational damage. 


According to an official readout, the two foreign ministers discussed bilateral and regional matters. The two countries agreed to build on these growing strategic links as well as further their trilateral cooperation initiatives, especially in Africa. 


Modi told the UAE minister that India and UAE would work together in trade and economy, energy, tourism and people-topeople contacts.