Jaishankar hails India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor

Sep 30, 2023 01:00 AM IST

India's External Affairs Minister, S Jaishankar, has highlighted the significance of the India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor (IMEC), stating that it will have "enormous consequences" for the global economy. The US is a "guarantor partner" in the project, which aims to enhance logistics between India and Europe. Jaishankar also emphasized the increasing economic ties between India and West Asia, particularly in terms of trade and food consumption. The Gulf region is undergoing a transition towards renewable energy and digital progress, creating new areas of intersection for Indian businesses.

Washington: The India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor will have “enormous consequences” with the US as a “guarantor partner” in the project, India is already enmeshed in economies of West Asia, and Delhi and countries in the region are finding new areas of intersection, external affairs minister S Jaishankar has said.

Jaishankar (PTI)
Jaishankar (PTI)

Speaking at a think tank event in Washington DC, Jaishankar hailed IMEC, which was unveiled on the sidelines of the G20 summit in New Delhi and includes the US, several European countries, UAE, Saudi Arabia, and India.

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“The latest initiative we are looking at is the Middle East corridor with India at one end, and Europe at the other. It has Saudi Arabia and UAE. It has the US as guarantor partner if you will. It really has a lot of possibilities. If we can find a more seamless, effective competitive logistics between India and Europe, it will have enormous consequences for the global economy.”

On the broader relationship between India and West Asia, while referring to the energy and people to people links and geographical proximity, the minister said, “We have to understand today that as India becomes a larger consumer and bigger economy, our salience in the Gulf economies calculations is that much higher. For UAE, we are the largest trade partner. And we would be among the top three of Saudi. And it isn’t just the volume of trade but we discovered, they discovered during Covid that Gulf is dependent for daily food consumptions on what comes out of India. The economies have got deeply enmeshed.”

He said said that the Gulf itself was in transition, with the region’s leaders talking renewables and green hydrogen and expressing their enthusiasm about digital progress. “We are finding new areas of intersection. And if you look at Indian businesses, we far more entrenched in Middle East than we have been in a long time.”

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    Prashant Jha is the Washington DC-based US correspondent of Hindustan Times. He is also the editor of HT Premium. Jha has earlier served as editor-views and national political editor/bureau chief of the paper. He is the author of How the BJP Wins: Inside India's Greatest Election Machine and Battles of the New Republic: A Contemporary History of Nepal.

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