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    I2U2 Summit: UAE to Invest $2 Billion to Develop a Series of Integrated Food Parks Across India

  • Date : 14 July, 2022

     United Arab Emirates announced a USD 2 billion investment on Thursday to develop a series of integrated food parks across India as part of the I2U2 (India-Israel-UAE-USA) grouping's efforts to combat food insecurity in South Asia & Middle East. The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World (SOFI) report, released on July 6 by five UN organizations, contains alarming estimates of widespread and worsening food insecurity in India. 

    The investment decision was made following a virtual summit between the group's leaders- Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India, US President Joe Biden of the United States, Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid of Israel, and UAE President Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan of the United Arab Emirates. 
    In a joint statement, the I2U2 leaders stated that New Delhi will provide appropriate land and facilitate farmers' integration into food parks. During their meeting, the group focused on the food security crisis and clean energy, and they discussed innovative ways to ensure longer-term, more diverse food production and food delivery systems that can better manage global food shocks. 
    In terms of food security, the I2U2 leaders stated that the UAE, which is home to the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) and will host COP28 in 2023, will invest $2 billion USD to develop a series of integrated food parks across India that will incorporate cutting-edge climate-smart technologies to reduce food waste and spoilage, conserve fresh water, and use renewable energy sources. 
    "The private sectors of the United States and Israel will be invited to contribute their expertise and innovative solutions to the project's overall sustainability." "These investments will help maximize crop yields, thereby addressing food insecurity in South Asia and the Middle East," the group said in a statement. 
    According to the joint statement, the I2U2 group will also advance a hybrid renewable energy project in Gujarat with 300 MW of wind and solar capacity, supplemented by a battery energy storage system. 
    "A feasibility study for the $330 million USD project was funded by the US Trade and Development Agency." Companies based in the UAE are looking for ways to serve as critical knowledge and investment partners. Israel and the US plan to collaborate with the UAE and India to highlight private sector opportunities. Indian companies are eager to participate in this project and help India reach its goal of 500 GW of non-fossil fuel capacity by 2030. Such projects have the potential to transform India into a global hub for alternative supply chains in the renewable energy sector,” according to the joint statement. 
    The leaders of I2U2 expressed their determination to use well-established markets to create more innovative, inclusive, and science-based solutions to improve food security and sustainable food systems. 
    "The leaders also welcomed India's interest in joining the Agriculture Innovation Mission for Climate initiative, which includes the United States, the United Arab Emirates, and Israel" (AIM for Climate). They stated that "these are only the first steps in a long-term strategic partnership to promote initiatives and investments that improve the movement of people and goods across hemispheres, as well as increase sustainability and resilience through collaborative science and technology partnerships," according to the joint statement. 
    The unique grouping of countries aims to "harness the vibrancy of our societies and entrepreneurial spirit to tackle some of the greatest challenges confronting our world, with a particular focus on joint investments and new initiatives in water, energy, transportation, space, health, and food security," according to the joint statement. 
    "We intend to mobilize private sector capital and expertise to modernize infrastructure, advance low-carbon development pathways for our industries, improve public health and vaccine access, advance physical connectivity between Middle Eastern countries, jointly create new waste treatment solutions, explore joint financing opportunities, connect our startups to I2U2 investments, and promote the development of critical emerging and green technologies, all while ensuring near- and long-term food and energy security,” the joint statement added. 
    The leaders of the I2U2 reiterated their "support for the Abraham Accords and other peace and normalization arrangements with Israel." 
    "We welcome the economic opportunities that flow from these historic developments, including for the advancement of economic cooperation in the Middle East and South Asia, and in particular for the promotion of long-term investment among I2U2 partners," the joint statement said. 
    Source: KrishiJagran 


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