Moreh an important hub to make Act East policy materialise : CM Biren

Imphal, May 4 (UNI) Moreh in Manipur could emerge as a support centre for trade promotion activities by developing commodity exchanges, logistics servicing and warehousing facilities and providing a transportation support hub in the implementation of the Act East Policy.

This was stated by him at the ‘Interactive Session with Chief Ministers of Northeastern States on Act East Policy’ held at New Delhi today. Official sources informed that Chief Minister told the meeting that Moreh town should be developed with multi-speciality hospitals, diagnostic centres, educational institutions etc., catering to the needs of Upper Myanmar.

He informed that making available banking facilities, easy payment modalities, quick food safety checks, single window clearances for transaction and bringing transactional costs to the minimum would facilitate to boost the trade.

He further stated that Moreh town could be treated as a buffer area where Myanmar nationals, with a pass issued by Indian authorities based on their ID cards, could visit for a specified limited duration. He mentioned that the Integrated Check Posts at Moreh should be made fully functional at the earliest. He suggested that there should be a single head for each border trade land Customs Stations(LCS) or Integrated Check Post(ICP) at appropriate level from either the Ministry of Commerce or any other Government Department.

Chief Minister opined that the upgradation of the 110 km Imphal-Moreh highway (NH39) to full double lane/four lane highway standard with paved shoulders should also be given priority to enhance the trade connectivity between the two countries. He also stressed that the Imphal-Silchar stretch of NH-53 should be improved as Imphal-Dimapur stretch suffer constantly from landslides during the rainy season.

Chief Minister asserted that signing of ASEAN-India Free Trade Agreement and its implementation in phases will accelerate the economic integration of North-eastern India with ASEAN countries.

The India-Myanmar-Thailand trilateral highway would open new possibilities for trade investment, he added. He suggested that a high level inter-Ministerial body with the participation of Manipur and Mizoram governments be constituted to devise and implement appropriate strategy for the success of Act East Policy. Such committee may closely monitor the progress of the various connectivity projects.

Chief Minster elaborately stressed on the India and Myanmar land connectivity on three fronts viz. Border trading point at Moreh in Manipur and Tamu in Sagaing Division of Myanmar, trading point at Zokhawthar in Mizoram and Rhi in Chin State of Myanmar and Kaladan Multi Model Transit Transport Project(KMTTP).

Completing these connectivity projects can bring about a sea change towards enabling a greater trade and economic activity, he added.