Harsimrat Kaur Badal, Union Minister of Food Processing Industries met the Minister of State for Food Security in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Her Excellency Mariam bint Mohammed Saeed Hareb Al Muhairi in Dubai on the sidelines of Gulfood 2020.
The two Ministers expressed satisfaction at the existing bilateral cooperation in the field of food security, with India being one of the largest food exporters to UAE. They further deliberated upon ways and means to further increase cooperation and collaboration in the sector between the two countries.
Both the Ministers discussed UAE investments in food corridors in India in accordance with the vision given by the top leadership of the two countries. Both Ministers mentioned that the two sides could also exchange information in new areas such as saline water agriculture.
Harsimrat Kaur Badal highlighted the enormous potential for investments in the food processing sector in India and said that the UAE side stays positive on opportunities for investing in various areas of food processing such as cold chains, food parks, contract farming and logistics.
Earlier in the day, FPI Minister addressed a business roundtable on opportunities in the food processing sector in India. More than 50 prominent business groups, traders and investors participated in the roundtable. Union Minister highlighted steps taken by Government of India for ease of doing business and the investor friendly policies in food processing.
Harsimrat Kaur Badal invited business groups to invest in food parks wherein Government of India gives support of upto Rs. 50 crore. She highlighted the Operation Greens scheme of Government of India for integrated development of tomato, onion and potato.
She also emphasized that India can become a major player in organic food, especially the states in the North East. She invited UAE companies to participate in the first Organic Food exhibition being organized in Delhi on February 21-23, 2020.
The participants at the roundtable appreciated the various steps taken by Government of India for promoting trade and investment. The discussions resulted in valuable suggestions such as single window clearances for investments, standardization of certificates for food exports from India, recognition of organic products of India, support for SMEs in identifying new markets and marketing of Indian products. The event was organized by Consulate General of India, Dubai together with PIOCCI, UAE.
Harsimrat Kaur Badal held one-on-one meetings with various companies in trading of food products and investing in the sector.
The Union Minister inaugurated the India pavilion put together with the assistance of APEDA at Gulfood 2020 on 16th February 2020. India is the largest participant in Gulfood with almost 300 companies and India's food exports to UAE stand at almost 1.8 billion dollars.