The trade between India and Middle east is an old phenomenon. Traditionally included within the Middle East are Persia, Asia Minor, Mesopotamia, the Levant, the Arabian Peninsula, and Egypt.
We can find numerous evidence of trade between the ancient civilisations of Mesopotamia and Harappa itself.Nowadays the trade and contact have become more important considering the volatile situation of the international politics.
There is a big call for being protectionists (read Brexit and trump) and there is this unpredictable problem called ‘global terrorism”, which is changing the way we think about the world.
Being the main supplier of crude oil, middle east(India’s MoE term it as West Asia) plays a major role in our energy market.almost 3 by 4th of our crude oil imports are from Middle east.
We have a huge community of expatriates in Middle-east and their annual remittances to India is a huge push for our economy.In states like Kerala, their economic clout is so vast that any disruption in these countries can have a direct impact on the economy back home.
India and UAE
Currently our 3rd biggest trading partner. The recent visit of the crown prince of UAE and his presence in our Republic parade is more than a sign of the importance of bilateral relations between India and UAE.The bilateral trade has crossed 75 billion recently.Both of these countries have pledged alliance to fight against the global menace of terrorism too.UAE is indirectly taking a stand against Pakistan, which is good for India’s fight against terrorism.
India and Israel
India is the largest buyer of arms from Israel and Israel is the second-largest defence supplier to India after Russia. Relations has further expanded during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s administration, with India abstaining from voting against Israel in the United Nations in several resolutions. Israel was one of the selected few nations, a group that also included France and Russia, that did not condemn India’s 1998 nuclear tests
Israel’s President Ezer Weizman negotiated the first weapons deal between the two nations, involving the purchase of Barak 1 vertically-launched surface-to-air (SAM) missiles from Israel. The Barak-1 has the ability to intercept anti-ship missiles such as the Harpoon.
Recently we have purchased Barak 8 missile, which is another surface to air missile and Spike anti-tank missiles from Israel .
India and Cyprus
Cyprus supports the India–United States Civil Nuclear Agreement, and also supports India within the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). The Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement between Cyprus and India was revised in 2016 and now it is easier to do business between the two countries.
India and Iran
Iran is a huge oil importer to India and India has invested in Iran heavily, the recent project being the development of Chabahar port in Iran as a counterweight to the enhancement of Gwadar port in Pakistan by China.
Iran is also part of the North–South Transport Corridor , which is the ship, rail, and road route for moving freight between India, Russia, Iran, Europe and Central Asia. The route primarily involves moving freight from India, Iran, Azerbaijan and Russia via ship, rail and road.
India and Jordan
There are massive imports of phosphate and potash by India from Jordan. There exists a successful cooperation in fertiliser sector too.
India and Kuwait
Until 1961 the Indian Rupee was the legal tender in Kuwait and Indo–Kuwaiti commerce revolved around trade in agricultural goods, textiles and horses.We import oil from them and the balance of trade is in favour of them.
India and Lebanon
Peacekeeping – INDBATT in United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL):
An Indian battalion (INDBATT) has been deployed in UNIFIL since November 1998 for peacekeeping, deployed in the easternmost sector of Lebanon’s southern border with Israel at the trijunction with Syria.
India and Oman
Oman is the first Gulf nation to have formalised defence relations with India.
India has been considering the construction of a 1,100-km-long underwater natural gas pipeline from Oman, called the South Asia Gas Enterprise (SAGE). It will act as an alternative to the Iran–Pakistan–India pipeline. It will connect the pipeline from Oman to Gujarat.The project is in the implementation stage right now.
India and Saudi Arabia
Currently the 4th biggest trade partner of India. Both nations are expected to expand trade and cooperation and joint ventures in telecommunications, pharmaceuticals, health services, information technology, biotechnology, agriculture, construction projects, energy and financial services. Both countries agreed to launch joint ventures for developing gas-based fertiliser plants in Saudi Arabia. India agreed to set up institutes of higher education and research, provide educational opportunities in India for Saudi Arabian students and expand cooperation between India’s Council of Scientific and Industrial Research and the Saudi Arabian Standards Organisation (SASO).
India and Turkey
More than 150 companies with Indian capital have registered businesses in Turkey in the form of joint ventures, trade and representative offices.
Turkey’s first nano satellite “ITUpSAT1”, manufactured at the Istanbul Technical University ‘s Faculty of Aeronautics was sent to space on PSLV C-14 rocket by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) on 23 September 2009
The growing affinity for Ayurveda
There is a major inflow for medical tourism from these countries to India and Ayurveda has turned out to be a real money spinner for Indian hospitals.
Even though there is a marked reduction in global oil prices, the economic hold of middle east still too huge on India and we have to be extremely watchful about the future of these relations.