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India-Saudi trade crosses $9.8 billion
June 26, 2007 12:35 IST
The trade between India and Saudi Arabia is growing rapidly with the bilateral trade crossing USD 9.87 billion last year.
Speaking at a meeting with Chief Executive Officers of Saudi Arabia in Jeddah on Sunday, Indian Consul-General in Jeddah Dr Ausaf Sayeed said India is the sixth biggest investor in Saudi Arabia with investments totaling USD 1.2 billion compared to USD 250 million just three years ago.
"Indian companies such as Wipro [Get Quote], Satyam [Get Quote] Computers, TCIL Saudi Co Ltd, TCS [Get Quote], Tata Motors [Get Quote] and L and T have started their projects in the Kingdom. Like wise, Saudi companies have started 49 projects in India and another 50 have been approved," Sayeed said.
Around 3.7 million Indian nationals live in the six GCC countries and send home about USD 8 billion annually. More than 1.5 million Indians are employed in Saudi Arabia alone.
"Indo-Saudi ties have assumed greater significance after King Abdullah's visit to New Delhi last year," he said.
Sayeed said, India ranked fourth in Saudi Arabia's top 10 destinations for exports in 2005 with the former importing goods worth SR40.24 billion after the United States, Japan and South Korea.
"China, Japan, South Korea and India are the biggest consumers of oil in Asia with the Kingdom meeting 26 percent of India's oil requirements compared to Japan's 25 percent and China's 14 percent," he was quoted as saying in Arab News.
"There is a great scope for Saudi Arabia to export more oil to Asia as it expands its role in the global economy. Asia will have 70 percent of incremental global demand growth in oil so strong partnerships can be build between major oil producers such as Saudi Arabia and major oil consumers such as Asian countries," Sayeed said.
"During King Abdullah's visit to India, Delhi Declaration was signed and it set the standard for long-standing ties between the two countries," he said.
Both India and Saudi Arabia will develop "strategic energy partnership." India will assist Saudi Arabia in setting up an ICT center of excellence.