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India –Kuwait Foreign Relations

Nithil Haridas, Class-3, New Gulf Indian School
Wednesday, February 19, 2020

India –Kuwait Foreign Relations

The Kuwaiti ruling family too has had longstanding ties with India. Cultural affinities, historical trade and other linkages, geographic proximity and a large presence of Indian expatriates in Kuwait, have sustained and nurtured the close relationship, which encompasses significant political, trade and economic interests.

Prior to the discovery of oil, Indo–Kuwait trade revolved around dates and horses, with Kuwaiti sailors making annual trips to the western ports of India to conduct the trade. The horse trade was ended in 1945 after World War 2, following which trade turned to pearls and teak wood.

Diplomatic relations between the countries began in June 1962 with the appointment of Yacoub Abdulaziz al-Rasheed as the first Kuwaiti Ambassador to India. India was among the earliest countries to recognize Kuwaiti independence while Kuwait was one of the first countries to extend support to India during the war with China in 1962. During the 1950s and 1960s Bombay was a hub for many Kuwaiti businesses and the emir himself maintained a house there on the Marine Drive. While relations between the countries have traditionally been warm, they were strained in the early 1990s due to India's pro-Iraq stance following Iraq's invasion of Kuwait.

India is also one of the biggest importer of oil from Kuwait however the trade is heavily shifted in favor of Kuwait. India and Kuwait have signed several agreements relating to scientific and technological cooperation including medical cooperation and in the areas of culture and education.

Nithil Haridas, Class-3, New Gulf Indian School

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