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Agitate for more NE dev.: Aiyar
Published on 25 Aug. 2008 12:48 AM IST
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Union Minister for Development of the North Eastern Region (DONER) Mani Shankar Aiyar has urged the north eastern states to agitate with the Centre for more development of the region. Emphasising on an urgent need to link the markets of the eight northeastern states with the emerging economies of the South East Asian countries, Aiyar said: “That’s why I have been urging these states to agitate much more with the Central Government to argue their case before us, to factor in the importance of developing NE and determine what our strategy should be for development of the region.” “Now we are focusing on linking the region to South East Asia on the basic assumption that South East Asia begins in North East India and efforts are on to make the region a gateway to the prosperous South East Asian nations,” Aiyar further said. Asserting that the Centre’s ‘Look East’ policy had so far primarily benefited the southern and western states, Aiyar said the impact of the policy on Northeast has been negligible and it was yet to reap benefits for the region. Pointing out that private sector has also shown interest in investing in the region, the Minister said the North Eastern Development Finance Corporation Ltd has so far received investment proposals amounting to Rs 14,000 crore from the private sector. The fourth NE Business Summit is to be organized by the DONER in collaboration with the Indian Chamber of Commerce of Kolkata on September 15 and 16 at Guwahati. The summit’s main objective is to showcase the potential of the north east states and to promote private sector investments. The fourth summit will primarily focus on sectors such as tourism, food processing, power, infrastructure, information technology, handloom and cottage industries. especially in the context of the Look East Policy on trade and investment linkages with ASEAN and SAARC countries.

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