A series of suitors have arrived in India this year. Dignitaries from the major powers have, one by one, beckoned with promises of fruitful partnerships. Russia became the last of the United Nations Security Council's permanent members to propose a more enduring relationship with the world's largest democracy on Tuesday.
But as we report today, the UAE and its neighbours are missing many chances to participate in India's growth despite their historic ties to South Asia. "Gulf countries have yet to come in a big way - there is a huge potential for investment in India," said Gopichand Hinduja, co-chair of the Hinduja Group, an Indian conglomerate.
Investment in India's stock markets is a much larger basis for its economic relationship with the Gulf than project financing or the development of its infrastructure. There is good reason for that to change. India's need for investment in the nuts and bolts of its economy will be massive over the next few decades. The country requires as much as $1 trillion (Dh3.67 trillion) in improvements to its roads, sewage systems and telecoms network.
There are few other countries in the world that have made more progress in developing infrastructure in recent years than the UAE. The construction of modern transport networks and facilities has been at the heart of Dubai and Abu Dhabi's rise.
Indians have been partners in the UAE's development in every capacity from bricks and mortar to management. The historic ties that connect the Gulf to South Asia are an extraordinary advantage for both partners that should be leveraged. As India embarks on projects of a similar scale, Gulf nations should be looking for the opportunities that presents, even if India is still battling corruption and graft.
The UAE should also take note of the rise of India's consumer economy. While India launched its first vehicle assembly plant in the UAE last week in Ras Al Khaimah, there is potential for many more of that type of project.
And of course, the links between the two countries are not purely economic. Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed, the President of the UAE, has supported India's bid for a permanent seat on the UN Security Council. The UAE has clear historic, cultural and geographic advantages in the race to develop India. It is time to seize the opportunities they provide.