Sangma pitches for 'Comprehensive multi-mode transport' with Bangladesh to promote business

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Shillong, January 27: While speaking at the Bangladesh Investment & Policy Summit 2016 as a Special Guest, Meghalaya Chief Minister Dr. Mukul Sangma pitched the idea of “Comprehensive multi-mode transport” to promote trade and business between India and Bangladesh.  Sangma felt the multi-mode transport concept would be beneficial to both sides as the north eastern region can supply raw materials to support industries in Bangladesh in exchange of its sea route and air services to be used for the region’s tourism purposes.Highlighting the strategic location and role of Meghalaya in the two counties trade and commerce, he pointed out that the state can facilitate smooth supply of raw materials to Bangladesh as it shares 443– km long border with it, with the mighty Brahmaputra and other rivers connecting both the sides along with the presence of number of Land Customs Stations.

He also informed how the new National Highway 127B which would connect North Bengal with the western part of Meghalaya across Brahmaputra with the longest bridge (17 km) is expected to serve as “trade corridor between Bhutan, Nepal, North East India and Bangladesh”. 

Sangma also highlighted about the strength of renewable natural resources in the State that would provide immense opportunities to improve the economies on both sides. With the breakthrough of science, he said many unexplored renewable resources like Ramie (one of the strongest natural fibres indigenous to the region) can be harnessed by creating greater value for these natural resources.

He also mentioned that the State Government with the support of the Union Government is actively working on a strategy to mitigate the climate change adaptation related problems and highlighted about the various missions (Aquaculture, Apiculture, Horticulture, et al) initiated by the State Government that would not only create livelihood opportunities to the people but also help the State to keep its sustainable ecology. 

With increased bilateral relations between both the countries, Sangma felt the need for utilizing the proximity of sea route via Bangladesh to promote the trade and business in North Eastern India. He also offered all possible policy support for the investments in the power sector too.

The Chief Minister also spoke of the possibility of using the Sylhet International Airport for promotion of tourism in Meghalaya and also the possibility of using this facility to promote exports of the high-value flowers and horticulture products from Meghalaya.  

The Chief Minister was accompanied by a delegation consisting of MIDC Chairperson Martin Danggo, MTDC Chairperson, David Nongrum, Principal Secretary, Commerce & Industries Department Peter Ingty, Commissioner & Secretary to the Chief Minister, P. Sampath Kumar and officials representing Industries, Tourism, Agriculture, Horticulture and Power Depts.

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