Indian Food Finds Favor in the UAE

July 31, 2009 by  Filed under: Sales 

In recent times, the Indian F&B industry has shown great potential to emerge as the biggest revenue-generating segment in the country. Ranked as the world’s second-largest food producer after China, the Indian F&B industry is currently estimated at around $182 billion.

Although domestic demand and consumption have increased considerably in the past few months, Indian food manufacturers, especially the small-sized enterprises, are exploring new destinations to increase exports.

Market overview.
The UAE is among the world’s most economically developed countries. One of the largest producers of oil in the world, the UAE is a lucrative market for foreign investors. According to trade analysts, UAE’s economy will continue to grow even at a time when most developed markets are struggling due to the economic recession. This projection is attracting a growing number of small-sized Indian food companies to tap this burgeoning market.

The UAE imports around 60% of its food from Asian and African countries. Owing to the huge demand for cereals and other food products in the UAE, the country has approached Asian countries like India and Pakistan to supply rice, wheat and other food products.

Statistics reveal that over three-quarters of India’s food product exports are supplied to the Gulf region.[ii] India primarily exports vegetables, meat, dairy products and confectionery to the UAE.

Food for thought.
Food exports to the UAE are estimated at around $3 billion annually. To increase this volume and gain from the UAE’s business-friendly environment, Indian Food companies should offer high-quality products to consumers who have a high purchasing power.

To gain easy access to the UAE food market, several small-sized Indian food companies have collaborated with their counterparts in the region. Several trade fairs and conferences have also been organised in the UAE to help Indian SMEs explore the potential of the UAE’s food market. Indian exhibitors have recorded strong participation at Gulfood, one of the biggest food exhibitions in the region.

The Indian government is also looking at boosting trade in agro products with the UAE to help Indian SMEs capture market share in the region. Meanwhile, the UAE government has also shown interest in investing in the Indian agriculture sector.

With both countries showing a commitment to enhance the scope of mutual trade and investment, Indian food companies, particularly the SMEs, can look forward to a profitable outing in the UAE.

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