India’s Act East Policy is a reflection of the commitment to deepen ties with the ASEAN region, and more importantly with our immediate neighbour Myanmar.

There are compelling reasons for the Northeast India to establish itself as a land hub of India’s Act East Policy said Manipur Chief Minister N Biren, during a conference on ‘Connecting India’s North East with North West Region of Myanmar’ in Imphal on June 11.

Aung Moe Nyo, Chief Minister, Magway Region Government, Myanmar, Moe Kyaw Aung, Ambassador, Embassy of the Union of Myanmar, Delhi, Nandan Singh Bhaisora, Consul General of India, Mandalay, Capt. Alok Bansal, Director, India Foundation and large numbers of Myanmar delegates attended the conference.

To unlock the latent potentials and untapped opportunities in the State and the region, physical and social infrastructure have to be robust. Elevated highways and ring roads are being planned in Imphal city, the capital of Manipur Biren said.

The Asian Highways 1 and 2 which pass through Manipur, will connect the Northeast region to Myanmar and beyond. There has been a renewed effort to ensure the early completion of the India-Myanmar-Thailand Trilateral Highway and to extend the same to Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam.

With rail line already in Manipur, the State is well placed to cater to the logistical needs of the region Biren said. A feasibility survey has been made to extend the rail line from Imphal up to Moreh. A study has also been conducted on the possibility of rail connectivity with Myanmar. This Trans Asian Railway Link has immense potential to uplift the socio-economic condition of the peoples further he said.

The formalities for starting the Mandalay-Imphal bus service are at its final stages. The next stage would involve the signing of Transport Protocol between the Government of India and the Government of Myanmar.

With this bus service, Manipur will serve as a land gateway for Buddhist religious centres in Tawang, Rumtek and Bodhgaya.

Manipur is proposing a flight between Mandalay-Imphal-Gaya in collaboration with Air India.

Manipur’s Integrated Check Post at Moreh has now been commissioned towards boosting border management and trade infrastructure. Moreh is already notified as Immigration Point for entry and exit he added.

Government of Manipur is actively considering setting-up of a Logistics Park.

Manipur shares strong cultural affinities with Myanmar. This presents huge potential for partnership in cultural tourism. Investments in infrastructure, skill development and film production have great potential while simultaneously promoting traditional and cultural art forms, and generating employment for the youth Biren added.

Myanmar delegates were invited by Governor Najma Heptulla to dinner on June 11 at Raj Bhawan. The delegates also visited RIMS and other hospitals to discuss the health care given to Myanmar patients.

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