New Delhi will have to act quickly to ensure that the current crisis does not affect its relations with one of the areas of the world that is crucial to India’s security and prosperity. The six states of the Persian Gulf that are part of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) — the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain, and Oman — are a major destination for Indian workers and feature the most significant concentration of the Indian diaspora. They contribute almost half of India’s annual remittances, and are thus crucial for the balance of payments and the broader economy. The GCC is also important to India in two other ways. Co-operation on security and counter-terrorism is vital, and has brought many breakthroughs for Indian national security in the past. In addition, India is a net energy importer, and the GCC countries are the major source of India’s crude oil and are important for its natural gas supplies as well.
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First Published: Wed, April 29 2020. 23:01 IST