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Thai trade survey underway
Correspondent IMPHAL, Mar 26:
Published on 27 Mar. 2011 12:19 AM IST
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A 13-member high level Thai delegation, who have arrived in Imphal for their three-day visit in Manipur yesterday, commenced survey on trade potential and connectivity between India, Myanmar and Thailand from Saturday.
The team led by Tharadol Thongruang, in-charge Thai-Myanmar Traders, Ministry of Commerce and also member of sub-committee on regional links and special economic zone, Thai Parliament arrived here yesterday from Thailand via Kolkata. They will conduct the survey in Guwahati and Kolkata during their camping in the country, an official source said.
Considering that improved connectivity between the Northeast and the Southeast Asian countries will not only help the region to discover a larger market, but also will integrate India with the those countries, a project, Trilateral Highway Project between India, Myanmar and Thailand, is being taken up. The project is under construction. Thailand and India in fact have completed construction of the link roads on either side, official said.
The Trilateral Highway between India, Myanmar, and Thailand under the Mekong-Ganga cooperation initiative that started in 2005,10 is an attempt to promote road connectivity between the three countries which will expand trade, tourism, and people-to-people contact.
The 1360 km Trilateral Highway, built at a cost of US$700 million, runs from Moreh in India to Maw Sot in Thailand through Bagan in Myanmar. The expeditious completion of the trilateral highway has ensured connectivity of Moreh, with the Diphu-Karong-Imphal- Moreh railway track.
The highway project also undertook the task of constructing a road from Kanchanburi in Thailand to Dawei in Myanmar, and the development of the deep seaport at Dawei. These are some of the visible efforts undertaken by Indian government to promote its linkages with the ASEAN region.
The trilateral highway project is considered to be an important element of India’s endeavor reach out to ASEAN. Delhi-Hanoi rail network Railways can prove extremely cost effective and convenient for the transportation of goods and people. India has undertaken projects like the Jiribam-Imphal-Moreh line in the East Indian state of Manipur and the Tamu- Kalay-Segyi line in Myanmar.
One of the primary motives behind India’s connectivity diplomacy with the Southeast Asian region is to cultivate Northeast India. The development deficit in the Northeast remains a challenge for the Indian government.
Most of the northeast produce was traditionally traded in markets in neighbouring countries, a trend which the partition of India disrupted. Therefore, linking the northeast with Southeast Asia will provide the region an outlet for its local produce, and in turn ensure an expanded market for India, source said.

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