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India, US, UAE, Israel launch I2U2 Private Enterprise Partnership

File photo of Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the inaugural meeting of Leaders of India, Israel, United Arab Emirates, and the United States in 2022 (Image courtesy: PIB)

India and its I2U2 partners have launched an initiative to mobilise private sector capital and expertise to increase their potential in key areas of development.

The US on Thursday signed a memorandum of understanding with business councils from the group to set up the I2U2 Private Enterprise Partnership (PEP).

I2U2 gets its unique acronym from the four countries, India, Israel, the United States and the United Arab Emirates, that came together in a virtual summit last year form the partnership.

Jose W Fernandez, the US Under Secretary of State for Economic Growth signed the MoU with the US-UAE Business Council, the UAE-India Business Council, and the UAE-Israel Business Council on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly meeting and the group is to be known as the I2U2 Business Council (BC).

Dammu Ravi, External Affairs Ministry’s Secretary in charge of economic relations, participated in the signing ceremony with officials from the partners.

He said in a video message: “This will help to synergise the potential of all the four members for the collective prosperity of the region.”

A State Department statement said: “This new public-private partnership will work to increase awareness of the I2U2 initiative in business communities and support projects and other efforts that further the goals of the initiative.”

Outlining the initiative, the MoU said that their goal is to draw “greater awareness to the potential of the I2U2 Initiative, particularly in the seven key sectors of focus, namely water, energy, transportation, technology, space, health, and food security”.

It will mobilise “the private sectors within the I2U2 countries to identify, explore, and participate in specific projects that further the goals of this initiative”, it added.

The MoU said the I2U2 BC will work with the State Department to hold events with governments in the four countries, convene a series of working group meetings with businesses, and publish papers by think tanks and scholars from their countries.