Economy and Business

Boosting business in the Bangladesh corridor is crucial to India’s ‘Act East’ policy

Leveraging the potential of the India-Bangladesh economic relationship has the power to change the economy of Northeast India

Oct 3, 2017
Leveraging the potential of the India-Bangladesh economic relationship has the power to change the economy of Northeast India
 
Let’s begin with connectivity. After 1947, Northeast India has had to access the rest of India largely via the “Chicken’s Neck” near Siliguri, greatly increasing travel times. For example, to reach a port, traders need to travel 1,600 km from Agartala in Tripura to Kolkata in West Bengal, via Siliguri, instead of travelling less than 600 kms to reach the same destination via Bangladesh, or even better, travel only 200 km to access the nearby port of Chittagong in Bangladesh.
 
This is set to change as close cooperation between Bangladesh and India (including various ongoing initiatives such as the trans-shipment of Indian goods through Bangladesh’s Ashuganj port to Northeast India, expanding of rail links within Northeast India and between the two countries, the BBIN Motor Vehicles Agreement) can dramatically reduce the cost of transport between Northeast India and the rest of India. The resultant decline in prices of goods and services can have a strong impact on consumer welfare and poverty reduction in the Northeast. Such cooperation also opens up several additional possibilities of linking India with ASEAN via Myanmar: for example, with Mizoram and Manipur acting as a connector between Bangladesh and Myanmar. Think of medicines being transported by land from Hyderabad in Andhra Pradesh to Thailand, via Bangladesh, Manipur and Myanmar.
 
Read more: http://m.hindustantimes.com/analysis/boosting-business-in-the-bangladesh-corridor-is-crucial-to-india-s-acteast-policy/story-QQil8gOEvRPEX6XZshJteP_amp.html

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