Guwahati: Foreign Minister S Jayashankar has said that if land connectivity through Myanmar and maritime connectivity through Bangladesh are commercially viable, a world from Vietnam and the Philippines, from Haiphong to Hazira and from Manila to Mundra will be open to the East-West side with sweeping facilities for the continent. .
“It will not only create the partnership that we have with ASEAN countries and Japan, but will actually make a difference in the Indo-Pacific economic structure that is being created now. I can get it right, ”Jayashankar said at the two-day River 3-Asian Confluence River Conclave that started here on Saturday.
He said the starting point was to increase connectivity with Bangladesh, especially the northeastern part of the country, and to restore the six historic cross-border rail links that have been inactive since 1965. “Once launched, the Mahishasan (Assam) link from Shahbazpur (Bangladesh) will be extended to Bangladesh and will be connected to the now modernized Kuluara-Shahbazpur railway line. Launched in December 2020, the Chilahati-Haldibari (West Bengal) line will further enhance Assam’s connectivity with Bangladesh through New Jalpaiguri, including passenger transport, ”said Jayashankar, adding that there is a new rail link from Akhaura (Bangladesh) to Agartala (Tripura). It is being developed under the grant-in-aid scheme, which is already boosting trade between India and Bangladesh, he said.
The Minister expressed high hopes for the negotiations to ensure uninterrupted vehicular traffic for the implementation of the BBIN Motor Vehicle Agreement. “Within Bangladesh, India is collaborating on a number of road projects, including the improvement of the Ashuganj River Port-Akhaura Land Port Road, under a LOC of over US 400 400 million. The road project connecting Barurhat to Ramgarh on the Indo-Bangladesh border, which will increase Tripura’s road connectivity with Bangladesh, is also being implemented under another LOC of US 80 80.06 million, ”he said.
Jayashankar said complex and cross-border geography is being coordinated through agreements to transport goods from Indian ports to Chittagong and Mongla ports in Bangladesh and from there to Tripura and other parts of the Northeast.
He said the success of four border haats between India and Bangladesh before the epidemic has further encouraged the government and nine new haats are being set up, three in Meghalaya, four in Tripura and two in Assam.
“Cross-border power transmission lines and digital connectivity infrastructure provide extra dimension of connectivity. Today 1160 MW is already being supplied and another 1500 MW is already in the pipeline from India to Bangladesh. The international gateway between Agartala and Cox’s Bazar is helping to provide fast internet access and broadband services in Tripura, ”added Jayashankar.
He said emerging regional economies include Nepal and Bhutan. “A road connecting Sikkim with Nepal through the Chiwa-Wenjiang border is also under construction as part of India’s border area development program. With its completion, Sikkim will have access to Nepal’s east-west highway, encouraging trade and tourism between the two countries, “he added.
“A hydropower plant in West Kameng district of Arunachal Pradesh is supplying 150 MW of hydropower to Nepal. We are the largest trading partner of Nepal and a significant supplier of petroleum products from the facilities of Assam and West Bengal. A pipeline from Nepal’s Siliguri to Jhapa is being explored, “said Jayashankar.” Modi’s recent visit to Lumbini this month was the latest opportunity to further India’s cooperation with Nepal.
He said India was looking at the possibility of building a cross-border railway line between Bhutan and India, passing through Assam or expanding the Buddhist circuit to connect the cherished religious destinations of Bhutan and Nepal with Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh.


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