North East India will be India's Gateway to the SEA, Says Ministry Of External Affairs

By Samrat Pradhan, Correspondent Thursday, 06 April 2023

The Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Rajkumar Ranjan Singh, declared on Wednesday that once the India-Myanmar-Thailand trilateral highway is completed, the northeastern region will become India's gateway to SouthEast Asia, with smooth land connections to the core of ASEAN and beyond.

Singh stated during the inaugural session of the 4th and final G20 Business Meet in the northeast under India's G20 presidency that the hosting of the B-20 event in Kohima is an outcome of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's vision that India in all its glory be showcased to the world through India's G20 Presidency.

He further claimed that the Prime Minister Development Initiative for the North East Region (PM-DevINE) indicates the government's emphasis on the northeast's development as the "New Engine Growth of India."

Singh stated that the government is rigorously working to improve land and rail connectivity with Bangladesh, and that the government is pitching northeast India to the business community as a potentially dynamic region of the world, surrounded by ASEAN, Bangladesh, Nepal, and Bhutan, with youth from the northeast playing critical roles in the hospitality and care-giving sectors across India.

He claimed that the northeast, with its rich human resource base, can help their company grow in the region and beyond, presenting vast and mostly untapped market opportunities.

Singh claimed that "diversity is the strength of the northeastern states," referring to the region's roughly 250 ethnic communities. "Previously, the region was deemed landlocked; nevertheless, the region has now become a hub for investment and collaboration with other global corporate organizations, as well as a platform for diversified alliances, thanks to the establishment of bilateral and multilateral linkages with other nations."

He went on to say that the G20 meeting is a good arena for demonstrating the region's potential to the rest of the world. The minister also indicated that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MEA) is prepared to assist governments in investigating potential investment sectors in the region and fostering economic partnerships.

Singh also voiced a desire for collaboration among educational institutions and the construction of all-weather roads in all border villages located close international boundary lines. He also called for the creation of new border crossing stations.

According to Nagaland Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio, Kohima is hosting 60 foreign delegations from 27 countries, including diplomatic, specialized trade, and economic delegates.

He said that approximately 100 B2B and B2G requests for interaction with government departments in Tourism, Trade and Industry, Agriculture, Horticulture, Healthcare, and Food Processing were produced.

Rio noted that the B20 Conference will benefit Nagaland because of its geographical location and will help Nagaland develop as a foundation for stronger ties with ASEAN countries.

According to him, the state's trading potential stems from its strengths in agriculture and forestry, mining and minerals, and services.


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