x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

Celebration of a relationship

The establishment of a UAE consulate in Kerala acknowledges ancient ties between neighbours.

About one million Keralites live in the UAE today, many of whom consider the UAE to be their second home. But the relations between this region and the southern India state go back centuries, if not millennia. The links between the UAE and Kerala go beyond the fields of trade and economics and include marriages between members of the two communities, which is why many local people speak Malayalam.

All this helps explain why the UAE has chosen to open a consulate in Thiruvananthapuram, sparing Keralites wanting to come to the Emirates from having to work through the UAE embassy in New Delhi.

As the largest Indian expatriate group in the UAE, the role played by Keralites in the development of the country has been recognised by rulers including Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid, the Vice President and the Ruler of Dubai, who applauded their significant contributions to the nation.

The consulate will open a new chapter in this special relationship between Kerala and the UAE, in terms of tourism, investment and trade cooperation. It also sends a clear message: this relationship that has existed since long before the creation of the UAE is here to stay.