Addressing the one-day international business summit ‘Gateway Manipur-connecting ASEAN Countries’ at Classic Hotel in Imphal on Thursday, CM N Biren reiterated that Manipur is the gateway to ASEAN countries and beyond for India.
As the global power axis shifts to the Indo-Pacific developing a secure and prosperous NE region as a convergence of India’s Act East Policy and Neighbourhood First Policy, it will be a vital pillar towards realising a common vision of a free and open Indo-Pacific, Biren said.
Air travel is important in Manipur, being a landlocked state, he said, adding that air connectivity has improved significantly in the state.
Imphal International airport is the third busiest airport in NE India and the ongoing development which includes a new integrated terminal and air cargo will further consolidate the air connectivity infrastructure in Manipur, the CM said.
Biren said under UDAAN scheme, there is a plan to start international flights from Imphal to Mandalay and Bangkok. Helicopter services have also been introduced in Manipur to provide air connectivity to the most remote parts of the state, Biren added.
Informing of efforts taken up by the state government for strengthening road connectivity, Biren said that the improvement of NH to Moreh is near completion.
Some regional projects such as Trilateral Highway Project, Kaladan Multi-Modal Transit Transport Project and SASEC Road Connectivity Projects would be transformative for Manipur and NE of India, he added.
He said the Integrated Check Post at Moreh is now functional and that security infrastructure along the border is being segmented. There are plans for Asian Railway through Moreh to Tamu by extending the rail line beyond Imphal, he said.
CM Biren highlighted the tourism potential of the state which has a rich natural, historical and cultural heritage. He also highlighted the initiatives taken up for youth entrepreneurs of the state saying that the state government continues to give priority to developing and promoting local food products, handlooms and handicrafts.
Stressing the potential of the state, CM N Biren said that there are huge untapped investment opportunities and areas for collaboration in the areas of connectivity, infrastructure, skill development, tourism, trade logistics, industries etc.
Biren said the business summit would provide new insights and fresh perspectives to pave way for Manipur.
Tweeting about the summit, N Biren said, ” Attended the One-day International Summit, “Gateway Manipur – Connecting ASEAN countries” at Hotel Imphal today. As a gateway to the Southeast Asia, Manipur will play a significant role in implementing Hon’ble PM Shri @narendramodi ji’s Act East Policy.”
He also said that the first building of the Information and Technology Special Economic Zone (IT SEZ) will be ready soon and it is expected to create employment opportunities for about 1500-2000 persons.
Better connectivity would have a positive impact on sectors like tourism, logistics, services sector, healthcare, education, IT and IT-enabled services towards ensuring inclusive and sustainable growth, the CM said.
The summit was organised by the Manipur Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MCCI) in association with the government of Manipur.
The inaugural session was also attended by the minister Counsellor (Commercial) Royal Thai Embassy, Thailand; Saithong Soiphet, Minister Counsellor (Commercial) Royal Thai; Embassy to India, Surapat Phosaen, general secretary, India; Bangladesh Chamber of Commerce and Industries; SM Abdul Kalam Azad and CEO, Textiles Sector Skill Council, Swapra Mishra.