Manmohan Singh visits Myanmar, aims for closer ties

Discussion in 'Foreign Relations' started by ejazr, May 26, 2012.

  1. ejazr

    ejazr Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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    Singh’s visit aimed at closer ties with Myanmar - Home - livemint.com

    New Delhi: India will aim to deepen its political, cultural and economic linkages with key neighbour Myanmar during a rare visit by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to the once reclusive state—the first by an Indian Prime Minister in 25 years. The last visit by an Indian Prime Minister to Myanmar was by Rajiv Gandhi in December 1987. It follows a visit to India by Myanmar’s first nominally civilian President Thein Sein in October—his first visit abroad after taking over the top job in March last year.

    On Singh’s agenda are talks to consolidate ties in energy, security, connectivity, engagement between the business communities and think tanks of the two countries, foreign secretary Ranjan Mathai told reporters in Delhi on Friday. Besides Singh’s official delegation that includes foreign minister S.M. Krishna, are a group of Indian business leaders representing the energy, information technology (IT), telecom, steel and agriculture sectors, including Sunil Mittal of Bharti Airtel Ltd and Atul Punj of Punj Lloyd Ltd.

    Singh will arrive in Nay Pyi Taw on Sunday and hold talks with President Thein Sein and others, Mathai said. Singh will also travel to Yangon where he is expected to meet democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi and other leaders of her party on Tuesday. Singh’s other engagements include a public address on the theme India and Myanmar: A Partnership for Progress and Regional Development.

    “The visit of the Prime Minister will enable us to build on the new foundations of our multifaceted relationship,” Mathai said. “We seek to leverage this to secure a stronger and mutually beneficial relationship with a neighbouring country that is integral to India’s Look East Policy,” he said, referring to the country regarding Myanmar as the bridge between India and the high-growth economies of South-East Asia.

    Sandwiched between Asian giants India and China, Myanmar is of immense strategic significance to India given its vast energy resources and long border with the insurgency hit north-eastern states—the reason why the government kept up its engagement with the military-ruled country despite criticism from the Western democracies.

    A strong supporter of Suu Kyi in the late 1980s, India switched tracks in the 1990s when it realized that insurgent rebels from India’s North-East were taking refuge in Myanmar. The Indian government was also criticized for investing in Myanmar’s energy and infrastructure sectors at a time when Western governments were keen on increasing pressure on the country through sanctions—something India has opposed as counterproductive.

    “We have always approached the issue of Myanmar keeping in mind that it is a neighbour. With neighbours, you don’t have a choice; you remain engaged irrespective of the situation,” Mathai said. “This is a matter on which we were very, very consistent. We may have had differences, but we have wanted always to continue a dialogue as a friendly, constructive partner.”

    With Myanmar holding its first elections in two decades in November 2010, then introducing further democratic reforms, allowing contacts between Suu Kyi and international leaders such as US secretary of state Hillary Clinton and British foreign secretary William Hague, besides creating conditions for Suu Kyi and her party, the National League for Democracy, to take part in historic by-elections last month, India feels vindicated.

    According to Neelam Deo, a former foreign ministry official who has dealt with the country, Singh’s visit “will consolidate the heightened engagement that India has carefully constructed with Myanmar since the late 1990s”.

    On Singh’s meeting with Suu Kyi, Deo, now director of Mumbai-based think tank Gateway House, said, “India must retain balance in reaching out to both the government and the opposition to encourage and support the promising future opening up in and for Myanmar,” rather than only stressing ties with Suu Kyi.

    On the political front, in a bid to help Myanmar’s fledgling democracy, India will be training Myanmarese parliamentarians. The training will start in July, Mathai said. On connectivity, both sides will be looking at a bus link between Imphal, the capital of Manipur, and Mandalay, the second largest city in Myanmar. Mathai said a preliminary pact had been finalized on this and will be part of a joint statement between the two countries.

    To share its expertise in the IT field, India is setting up a training centre in Myanmar, Mathai said, adding that an agricultural research centre and a rice bio-park are also being established.

    Both sides are also exploring the setting up of more border trade centres in addition to the two already in existence—Ri in Meghalaya and Moreh in Manipur. India is also looking at a trans-Asian highway connecting India’s North-East to Thailand through Myanmar. On energy cooperation, India will be flagging its interests “in our companies getting more opportunities in Myanmar, both onshore (oil) blocks as well as offshore (gas) blocks”, Mathai said. “There is so much potential in the Myanmar economy, the scope for cooperation is virtually open in all areas.”
     
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  3. ejazr

    ejazr Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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    India, Myanmar to explore new initiatives to boost ties: PM - Hindustan Times

    Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Sunday said India and Myanmar would explore new initiatives and define a roadmap for further boosting of bilateral ties with focus on trade, investment and connectivity as he begins a three-day visit to that country. Pointing out that India attaches the highest importance to its relations with Myanmar, a "close friend and neighbour", Singh said in a statement shortly before his departure for Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar's new capital, that "recent years have witnessed significant strengthening and expansion of our bilateral relations" and his coming visit "will provide an opportunity to review the progress in implementation of decisions" taken during the "highly successful visit" of Myanmar President Thein Sein to India in October last year.

    "We will also consider new initiatives and define a roadmap for the further development of our cooperation in the years ahead," said Singh who will be the first Indian Prime Minister to visit Myanmar in quarter of a century since Rajiv Gandhi's trip to that country in December, 1987.

    The Prime Minister, who will hold talks with Sein on Monday at Nay Pyi Taw, said that during his visit to Myanmar he hopes to focus on "stronger trade and investment links, development of border areas, improving connectivity between our two countries and building capacity and human resources".

    "We also hope to sign a number of agreements and MoUs to further strengthen our bilateral cooperation in these areas, besides promoting people-to-people contacts," Singh said.

    Singh, who will also meet leader of the opposition and Nobel Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi in Yangon on Tuesday, said India welcomes Myanmar's "transition to democratic governance and the steps taken by the government of Myanmar towards a more broad-based and inclusive reconciliation process and offered to share "democratic experiences" with that country.

    Since taking office more than a year ago, President Thein Sein has surprised many critics by releasing Suu Kyi from 15 years of house arrest and allowing her National League for Democracy (NLD) to contest and win parliamentary elections in April this year, freeing other political prisoners, opening talks with ethnic rebels and easing media censorship and restoring labour unions right to strike.

    Singh said he was looking forward to address a cross-section of Myanmar society and interact with the Indian and Indian-origin community in Yangon on the final day of his visit.

    The Prime Minister said the "shared history and culture" of India and Myanmar "provides a strong basis for the enhancement of contacts between the people of our two countries" and India remains "committed to a close, cooperative and mutually beneficial partnership with the government and people of Myanmar".

    Singh said he is looking forward to visiting the historic Shwedagon Pagoda, a testament to 2600 years of Buddhist heritage, and the mazar (the grave) of the last Emperor of India, Bahadur Shah Zafar, in Yangon.

    The Pagoda houses the hairs of Lord Buddha who had given them to two merchant brothers in return for a honey cake they offered to him.

    High on Singh's agenda of talks with Myanmar President Thein Sein, a former army general heading a quasi-civilian government, will be deepening ties in energy, security, connectivity, trade and information technology.

    The two countries are expected to sign a number of agreements in energy sector and connectivity during the visit.

    The high-points among the slew of agreements will be the ones relating to an offshore gas block awarded to private Indian company Jubilant Energy in global competition and a passenger bus service between Imphal and Mandalay, Myanmar's second largest city after Yangon.
     
  4. ejazr

    ejazr Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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    How important is Dr Singh's visit to Myanmar? - Rediff.com India News

    Leaders of only a few Asian countries have visited Myanmar in the new era. Notably, China is not among them.

    Dr Manmohan Singh's [ Images ] visit, the first by an Indian prime minister since 1987, is imbued with larger regional significance, says Rajiv Bhatia, a former ambasaador to Myanmar.

    Why India is wary of Myanmar-NSCN-K agreement

    Visits by India's [ Images ] prime minister to foreign lands are frequent -- and routine. But it is different in respect of his visits to neighbouring countries, which are still quite rare. Dr Manmohan Singh's voyage to Myanmar from May 27 to 29 has a special novelty value.

    Historic changes unfolding in that country and the fact that Rajiv Gandhi [ Images ] was the last prime minister to go there in 1987 lend unusual importance to the forthcoming visit.

    The context

    As Dr Singh reaches the 'Golden Land', he will join a unique group comprising Jawaharlal Nehru [ Images ], Lal Bahadur Shastri [ Images ], Indira Gandhi [ Images ] and Rajiv Gandhi. Nehru and Indira Gandhi visited Burma more than once. Nehru received then Burmese prime minister U Nu many times. Even Ne Win, the military dictator, whose politics differed radically from that of U Nu, the democrat, shared the latter's passion to be in India frequently.

    Shastri and Rajiv Gandhi each visited Burma once in 1965 and 1987 respectively. The last visit took place on a high note of optimism, but it was a failure due to Ne Win's negativism.

    None foresaw that Burma then stood at the cusp of historic changes including the mass uprising in 1988, the overthrow of Ne Win's regime, the brutal crackdown by the military, and the 1990 elections which gave victory to the National League for Democracy, but not power. This was followed by two decades of direct military rule.

    Once again, Myanmar gazes at the future. Will the people's ambition to become a genuine, inclusive democracy that is at peace with itself and brings progress at home and stability in the region be fulfilled?

    The period, which began with flawed general elections in November 2010 under a new constitution and may last until the next elections in 2015, represents an era of complex transition.

    The present stage of 'managed democracy' is notable for a significant increase of freedom for people and the media as also for inclusiveness and a tendency to reform the old ways, be it in politics, the economy, the social sector and foreign policy.

    This change has immense possibilities, but they are circumscribed by red markers set by the military, still the key driver.

    Stakes and issues

    Dr Singh knows President Thein Sein well, having met him on a number of occasions and received him in Delhi [ Images ] last year. It is due to the prime minister accepting the advice of his top advisors that the visit is taking place. Earlier, he was due to attend the BIMTEC summit to be hosted by Myanmar, and a short bilateral visit was to be appended to it.

    When the summit fell through due to disagreement about dates, New Delhi could have pulled out of it altogether. That it did not do so and instead chose the option of a substantive stand alone visit, demonstrates South Block's awareness of the high stakes involved. It is clearly determined to promote mutual interests through a prudent strategy.

    Leaders of only a few Asian countries have visited Myanmar in the new era. Notably, China is not among them. Dr Singh's visit is, therefore, imbued with larger regional significance.

    On reforms in Myanmar, India's position is certain to be enunciated clearly: Support for the process as defined by the people's leaders themselves; reiteration of non-interference in internal affairs; and a pledge to help through sharing of India's experience in democracy, Centre-state relations, inclusive governance and economic development.

    The prime minister will portray India as Myanmar's dependable partner. In return, Naypyidaw will hopefully show commitment to pursue an independent foreign policy, be it vis-a-vis China, the United States or the European Union.

    Besides, Myanmar could help more by assuring the Indian prime minister that its past promises to cooperate in better management of border security, will be fulfilled.

    On economic links, it is India that is lagging behind to deliver on past commitments, although Myanmar's responsibility too cannot be ignored.

    The Kaladan multi-modal transit transport project, the trilateral highway project and the Tamanthi hydroelectric power project are still unrealised dreams for new connectivity.

    For assisting Myanmar, India should focus on areas that are its strengths such as agriculture, healthcare, SME, education, IT and capacity-building. As to large infrastructure projects, let us first fulfil our past commitments and then only think of undertaking new ones.

    A meeting with Aung San Suu Kyi [ Images ] will perhaps be the most closely watched item on the prime minister's calendar. Both she and her party on the one hand and some in New Delhi, on the other, have nursed grievances against each other. Her supporters were convinced that India should have sacrificed its strategic interests to support their cause.

    Some in India argue that she has been unfair in her criticism of Indian policy, revealing a bias towards the West. But now it is time to look to the future. Both Dr Singh and Suu Kyi can be counted upon to show statesmanship. She is likely to be invited to visit India.

    Impact

    A substantial number of bilateral agreements are likely to be signed, covering defence, economic, energy and cultural cooperation. Commitments to step up sub-regional cooperation would be exchanged, thereby stressing a natural connection between western Myanmar and our north-east region. Myanmar may receive further assistance in enhancing its technical and institutional capacities.

    But beyond what happens inside the conference rooms, lies the potential significance of the visit. It will showcase a truly unique and historical relationship.

    When the Indian prime minister prays before Lord Buddha's image at the Shwedagon Pagoda, he would acknowledge an important sacred bond.

    As he pays homage at the mazar of Bahadur Shah Zafar, India's last emperor, he will honour a common legacy.

    In interacting with the Indian Diaspora in Yangon, Dr Singh will express appreciation for those who retained faith in Myanmar even when it fell off the radar of much of India.

    A new chapter is about to begin in the shared journey of India and Myanmar. Rajiv Gandhi's bold venture was derailed by history, which now seems to favour Dr Manmohan Singh.

    Rajiv Bhatia, a former Indian ambassador to Myanmar, is a visiting senior research fellow at the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies, Singapore.
     
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  5. Kunal Biswas

    Kunal Biswas Member of the Year 2011 Moderator

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    Manmohan Singh is beginning an official visit to Burma, the first by an Indian prime minister since 1987.

    [​IMG]

    BBC News - India PM Manmohan Singh in historic Burma visit
     
  6. LurkerBaba

    LurkerBaba Staff Administrator

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    First visit in 25 years ? :shocked: What about our much-touted "Look East Policy" ?

    ------


    The Hindu : News / National : Manmohan arrives in Myanmar
     
  7. LurkerBaba

    LurkerBaba Staff Administrator

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    SM Krishna with Myanmar Foreign Minister U Wunna Maung Lwin at Presidential Palace in Nay Pyi Taw

    [​IMG]
     
  8. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    The meek may inherit the world.

    But it cannot be with bleats!
     
  9. LurkerBaba

    LurkerBaba Staff Administrator

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    K Yhome: Myanmar and India - a bridge, and a gateway to the East

    Building an enduring relationship with Myanmar will be difficult. But there are some things Dr Singh can do to make it easier


    Myanmar has witnessed dramatic developments in the recent past as the country moves towards a more open political system and re-engages the international community after long years of isolation. These developments have been taking place alongside rapidly changing strategic and economic dynamics in the region. It is in this context that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s visit to Myanmar assumes great significance.

    In the past decade or so, India’s Myanmar policy has been driven largely by its security and economic considerations. However, the engagement has at least laid the ground for the two neighbours to take their relationship to a higher level. This is in spite of the fact that the political stalemate in Myanmar, between the military regime and pro-democracy movements, coupled with New Delhi’s own sluggish policy implementation and lack of coordination, have impeded the growth of the relationship.



    India wants to increase its role and presence in Southeast Asia and beyond. The prime minister’s visit to Myanmar will be seen as part of this effort, within the evolving regional geopolitics, as Myanmar tries to rebalance its external engagements. New Delhi would want to use the visit to reaffirm its willingness to strengthen the relationship with its eastern neighbour, and with the hope that Myanmar both becomes the bridge and acts as a gateway in reaching the East.

    Myanmar, meanwhile, will want to see the high-profile visit as a re-affirmation of its reforms, and will hope that the strengthening of ties with the region’s major player will enhance its profile. It aspires to regain its historical place as a regional powerhouse. Naypyidaw will, of course, seek development assistance from New Delhi as it plays catch-up with its neighbours.

    Even as the ongoing political transition in Myanmar has made progress under President Thein Sein, the country still faces daunting challenges on several fronts. It remains one of the poorest nations in the region despite being endowed with rich natural resources. Long years of economic mismanagement and military rule have had disastrous consequences, and it will take years for the country to build the capacity it requires. In fact it is here that India’s role and support could play a critical role.

    Thus India needs to define its role in Myanmar; and this visit should be used to chart out a long-term plan for enduring cooperation and mutual benefits. The focus of the visit needs to be on creating the ground for strengthening and broad-basing engagement with all the political players in Myanmar; deepening economic ties; and increasing the connectivity between two countries.

    Prime Manmohan Singh’s meeting with Aung San Suu Kyi will, of course, send a strong message to her party, the National League for Democracy (NLD), and other pro-democracy parties that India supports the values they have long struggled for. As India engages Suu Kyi and the NLD, it is important that India also build strong ties with the military-backed ruling party, the Union Solidarity and Development Party.

    Equally important is building a bridge to Myanmar’s many ethnic political parties — particularly those from the states bordering India. These could play a critical role in dealing with border issues — whether these are related to connectivity, to security, or to infrastructure, trade and investment. More importantly, sharing India’s parliamentary and democratic experiences with Myanmar’s political parties could go a long way in strengthening Myanmar’s nascent democracy.

    India and Myanmar have several common social, economic and security issues along their shared border. New Delhi and Naypyidaw are aware that in dealing with these issues, they need each others’ help. Working out a common strategy for development of their border regions will serve well in resolving some of the long-standing ethnic unrest on both sides of the border, as well as other border-related security issues. Increased connectivity to boost economic activities in the border regions will be central to this effort.

    For both New Delhi and Naypyidaw, economic development that respects local sensitivities and benefits the local population of India’s Northeast and Myanmar’s Northwestern region are the only answer to resolve the decades-old armed violence that has characterised the two regions. Ethnic communities along the India-Myanmar border have long been seen as a security problem; little, however, has been done by both powers to change this, and efforts to make them key stakeholders in the bilateral relationship have been negligible. This must change.

    India needs to focus on its strengths while dealing with Myanmar. Two areas where India can, perhaps, make the biggest impact are the health and education sectors. Indian pharmaceuticals companies have already created a strong presence for themselves in Myanmar, dominating the market with a share of over 40 per cent. India is already involved in building hospitals in Myanmar, and these efforts needs to be expanded by involving the Indian private sector.

    Despite the rich traditional and cultural ties between the two countries through history, the present-day presence of each in the popular imagination of the other is dismally low. There is an urgent need to encourage people-to-people contacts. India has several “soft power” advantages that could be leveraged to increase its image in Myanmar. Bodh Gaya and other Buddhist shrines in India could be used to attract Burmese visitors. And Indian educational institutions are yet another area where India can project its image. To this end, offering scholarships to Burmese students to study in Indian universities and technical institutes such as information technology and computer science will ensure a long-term relationship with Myanmar’s younger generations. It may be noted that Aung San Suu Kyi studied and lived in India in the mid-1960s and late 1980s.

    As immediate neighbours, sharing long land and maritime boundaries, India and Myanmar have little choice but to engage each other closely. Such engagement, particularly after a long spell of strategic distance, needs understanding of each other’s social and economic interests, and respect for each other’s political and strategic concerns. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s visit will be considered crucial by historians, if he succeeds in laying a strong foundation for an enduring relationship between India and its most distant neighbour.

    K Yhome: Myanmar and India - a bridge, and a gateway to the East
     
  10. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    It is only aggressive interaction that will give results.

    None of the bleats as I said earlier.

    Has India got the guts and political will to do so?

    All this humbug about historic and cultural claptrap will not work!
    .
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2012
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  11. nrj

    nrj Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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    India to provide 500 million USD credit to Myanmar.
     
  12. mahesh

    mahesh Regular Member

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    how long it would that to overcome china influence,
    if Myanmar, Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh & SriLanka all come in favor of India that will be a miracle which china would hate to see.
    it's a pity that these and few other nations are culturally close to India yet politically and strategically far from India but things are going well. i hope that radar hearing station of china at Myanmar coasts shall vanish as Russian ships where removed from Vietnam port.
     
  13. nrj

    nrj Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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    Overcoming China?

    Well its going to take some time because China has put 8 billion USDs in Myanmar against India's 500 millions ;)
     
  14. Kunal Biswas

    Kunal Biswas Member of the Year 2011 Moderator

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    Myanmar army had always very good relation with IA..

    I Don`t know about Politics though..
     
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  15. nrj

    nrj Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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    :hmm:

    We are happy about Manmohan Singh's Myanmar visit: China

     
  16. nrj

    nrj Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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    India, Myanmar ink pact on petroleum exploration

    NAY PYI TAW: Indian and Myanmar today inked three pacts including on exploration and production of petroleum and leasing of a paper and pulp mill.

    A big business delegation led by Sunil Bharti Mittal was accompanying Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, who is here for a two-day visit.

    The three MoUs were signed in presence of V S Seshadri, Ambassador of India to Myanmar.

    An agreement on production sharing of contract for exploration and production of Petroleum was signed between Jubilant Oil & Gas Private Ltd and Parami Energy Development Company Ltd and Myanmar Oil and Gas Enterprise on production for Onshore Block PSC-I.

    A MoU for leasing the Thar Paung Paper and Pulp Mill between JK Group and Myanmar's Industry Ministry was also signed.

    The business delegation also had an interaction with Myanmar President U Thein Sein and several other cabinet Ministers of Myanmar.

    "Sein invited the Indian industry to invest in pharmaceutical, energy, manufacturing, telecom and IT," CII said in a statement.

    "He said the SME sector had great potential for technology absorption SME sector in Myanmar," it said.

    The delegation includes Hari S Bhartia, B Muthuraman, Sanjay Kirloskar and Atul Punj.

    India, Myanmar ink pact on petroleum exploration - The Economic Times
     
  17. Godless-Kafir

    Godless-Kafir DFI Buddha Senior Member

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    Lb you thinking what i am thinking? they seem proud enough to be in their dress, but in 10 years democracy is going to make them look like sm,kishna!
     
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  18. ejazr

    ejazr Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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    With 12 pacts, India, Myanmar try to fill gaps - Indian Express

    Upgrading ties significantly with Myanmar, which is opening up rapidly after 50 years of military rule and isolation, India today extended a $500-million line of credit and inked 12 pacts.

    These include an air services agreement providing for 5th freedom rights which will allow Indian carriers, private included, to combine flights to Myanmar with other destinations in South East Asia and beyond.

    A joint working group will examine the feasibility of rail connectivity between the two countries and movement of freight from India to the ASEAN region. The Imphal-Mandalay bus service has also been shown the green light, though the absence of an all-weather road in Myanmar is likely to delay its start. Among the MoUs signed is one for a border haat at the Pangsau Pass in Arunachal Pradesh that will function on the lines of haats that exist on the Bangladesh border.

    Both sides agreed to enhance banking arrangements for promotion of trade. Indian banks will be allowed to open representative branches in Myanmar and the RBI and Central Bank of Myanmar will sign an MoU for currency arrangements.

    These slew of measures, intended to fill gaps in connectivity and physical infrastructural linkages with a country that is India’s only bridge to the ASEAN, were announced after talks between Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and President Thein Sein at the Presidential Palace in Naypyitaw. The two leaders held a restricted meeting and this was followed by delegation-level talks.

    Later in the day, a delegation of 15 Indian CEOs met the President. The business team is here to explore investment opportunities, especially in the energy sector, given Myanmar’s proven reserves of oil and natural gas. Oil explorer Jubilant Energy has been awarded an onshore block in the Central Burma basin and the site is located 125 km north of Yangon.

    A joint statement underlined that the Prime Minister congratulated President Sein on his government’s “path-breaking reform measures... towards greater democratisation and national reconciliation” and “negotiation of preliminary peace agreements with several ethnic groups as well as dialogue with various democratic parties, including the National League for Democracy led by Daw Aung San Suu Kyi”.

    The PM will fly to Yangon tomorrow morning where his engagements include a meeting with Suu Kyi at the Sedona hotel.

    At his meeting with Sein, Singh said India was ready to assist in accelerating Myanmar’s transition to democracy and developing the capacity of institutions such as the parliament, national human rights commission and the media.

    Details of a discussion on security and counter-terrorism measures were not made public. Foreign Secretary Ranjan Mathai said both sides were taking steps in that direction and had linked the subject of security to the development of border areas. For long, Myanmar was the refuge of North-East insurgent groups.

    India said it was ready to extend financial assistance of $5 million per year for five years on small development projects such as schools, health centres and dispensaries, small roads and bridges, agriculture and agro-processing centres in the Naga Self Administered Zone in the Sagaing Division bordering Manipur and the Chin State bordering Mizoram. The assistance package included supply of Bailey bridges in the border areas.

    The MoU for operationalisation of the $500-million line of credit was signed between the EXIM Bank of India and the Myanma Foreign Trade Bank. Mathai said Myanmar officials identified areas such as agriculture and irrigation, railways and power that would be covered under the line of credit. Among the pacts signed was one on academic cooperation between Dagon University in Myanmar and Calcutta University on the exchange of faculty members, students and administrative managers and research material.

    Much of the focus during the talks between the two sides was on improving physical linkages. Myanmar sought Indian assistance in construction and upgradation of 120 km of the Kalewa-Yargi road segment as part of the Trilateral Highway, key to the proposed Asian Highway network. Myanmar will take up construction of the Yargi-Monywa stretch and completion of the road is likely to take three years. Only then can the proposed Imphal-Mandalay bus service be operational throughout the year — the road is unusable during the monsoon months.

    Indian officials said they were “more than satisfied” with the outcome of the meetings in Myanmar. The visit of the PM, they said, would enable them to build on existing ties and leverage this to secure a stronger relationship with a country integral to India’s Look East policy.
     
  19. thakur_ritesh

    thakur_ritesh Administrator Administrator

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    If I may put it, let there be an invasion from the private sector. The GoI just needs to be the facilitators and pull back, rest, right from FMCG products to petroleum projects, the private sector needs to be pushed in big time, as such we are up against a lot of odds there, so might as well push in our best weapon, the private sector.

    Imagine our extent of influence and China's, before the visit of our PM, the Burmese first go to Beijing to get a nod in a yes, and only then the Indian PM is allowed to step foot.
     
  20. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    Indian investors should be allowed to deal with the Myanmar Govt.

    Bureaucrats should be kept far away and so must the Ministers kept far.

    It will also save the burden on the national exchequer since they would not be going on unproductive jaunts taking it easy but looking busy.
     
  21. LurkerBaba

    LurkerBaba Staff Administrator

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    Manmohan Singh with Aung San Suu Kyi




    (video quality is horrible and this is supposedly the official youtube channel of PMO)
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 10, 2015

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