x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 18 January 2018

Pratibha Patil looks to strengthen bilateral ties

The Indian president hopes a long anticipated counter-terrorism and maritime security deal with the UAE will be signed soon.

The Indian president Pratibha Patil yesterday met Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, the Vice President of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, and said she hoped a long anticipated counter-terrorism and maritime security deal with the UAE would be signed soon.

During the meeting, Sheikh Mohammed and Mrs Patil discussed bilateral relations and ways to strengthen them commercially and culturally, according to a statement issued on WAM, the official state news agency.

Strengthening these ties is necessary because of the rapid increase in bilateral trade and the "historic friendship" that ties the people of India and the UAE.

The two leaders discussed agriculture and food security and the potential for cooperation in dry land farming and desalination, which is responsible for a large part of the UAE's water supply.

Sheikh Mohammed considers President Patil's visit an important component in promoting cooperation between the two countries, according to WAM.

President Patil praised the UAE's development, singling out "world-class infrastructure", and educational, technological and architectural development in the country and its society.

Those attending included Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed, Deputy Ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, the Chairman of Emirates, Dahi Khalfan, the Chief of Dubai Police, Sheikha Lubna Al Qassimi, the Minister of Foreign Trade, and Reem al Hashimi the Minister of State.