Shri Honchun Ngandam, Honorable Education Minister, Government of Arunachal Pradesh address at North East India-CLMV Business Summit

Shri Honchun Ngandam, Honorable Education Minister, Government of Arunachal Pradesh address at North East India-CLMV Business Summit

North East (India) – CLMV Business Summit 2017, organized by Union Ministry of Commerce and Industry and Services Export Promotion Council (SEPC), in association with International Chamber for Service Industry, was held on 24 and 25 March at Guwahati. Shri Honchun Ngandam, honorable Education Minister of Arunachal Pradesh State Government, India was the chief guest at the summit. His address at the summit called for joint efforts by the government and private sectors to tap the abundant natural resources of North East India for socio-industrial development of the region at par with other states of the country.

The world has become truly a global village and fraternal ties between nations and trading blocs are fast developing into time-tested relationships, said Arunachal Pradesh Education Minister Honchun Ngandam, adding that economic cooperation has become so vital that no nation can escape from the reality of a global village.

Addressing the two-day international conference of ‘North East (India)-CLMV (ASEAN) & amp; business summit’ as chief guest here during March 24-25 last, he termed the historic opportunity attended by dignitaries from India and CLMV nations a solemn partnership gathering between ASEAN and NE India for greater economic cooperation between India and ASEAN, particularly Cambodia, Lao DPD, Myanmar, Vietnam on trade potential of services between NE(I)& CLMV countries, according to an official release.

The conference, themed ‘Deliberation on Trade Potential of Services between NE(I); Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar and Vietnam countries’ (CLMV)’, was organized by Union Ministry of Commerce and Industries in association with Service Export Promotion Council and powered by International Chamber for Service Industry at Hotel Radisson Blu here.

It is the desire of a billion-plus Indians that people to people and region to region contact between the five great nations, India, Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar and Vietnam should be encouraged and enhanced so that bilateral ties become more sustained, strategic, meaningful and deep-rooted.

The GoI had evolved the Act East policy under the leadership of visionary Prime Minister Narendra Modi; since whole NE India and South Asian economies are similar in nature and such strategic policy would be symbiotic and provide ample opportunities for future cooperation and integration.

NE India, better connected with South East Asia (SEA), actively trading with ASEAN countries, especially with Bangladesh and Myanmar, he said, adding that NE region blessed with abundant natural resources for socio-industrial development as the resources are still utilised to fullest potentials, which are waiting to be tapped to take NE at par with other developed states of India.

“The region has certain distinct advantages as it is strategically located with access to traditional domestic market of eastern India, besides proximity to major states in the east and adjacent countries, such as Bangladesh and Myanmar. The NE is a vantage entry point to SEA markets. The resource-rich NE India with its expanses of fertile farmland and a huge talent pool could turn into one of India’s most prosperous regions,” he said.

“We believe that conventional market-based solutions may not work here, given the issues related to poor infrastructure and connectivity, unemployment and low economic development, law and order problems, etc. The Govt. and the private sector need to collaborate and take a lead in providing solutions to these problems.

“More reform needs to be initiated in a range of areas, such as investment in agriculture, horticulture, overseas exchange programme in education, hydropower, and infrastructure as well as in creating new avenues for economic growth through the development of vertically integrated food processing chains, herbal medical sector, market-linked skill development and cross-border trade.

“As multiple avenues for growth and development emerge, it is of paramount importance that the region, as a collective identity, embarks on a vibrant journey to realise the dreams for the better future,” Ngandam added.

Union Ministry of Union Ministry of Commerce additional economic advisor, TPD; EP (Services), and Service Export Promotion Council Director General,Sangeeta Saxena, speaking on the theme, highlighted the rising importance of international trade and investment as a growth facilitator and growth driven for regions. She said that “international trade has gained significance and has been growing rapidly in the CLMV countries with the establishment of ASEAN Free Trade Area (AFTA), which has also resulted in increase in both amount and volume of intra-trade flows. The share of CLMV region in ASEAN’s total trade has increased from 6.7% in 2005 to 17.4% in 2015, where CLMV’s share in ASEAN’s exports increased from 6.1% in 2005 to 16.2 % in 2015 and, imports increased from 7.3 to 18.7% during the same period”. She suggested to tap the share of exports & imports in CLMV countries from NE(I) as the region has close affinity in demography, features, socio-cultural and climatic condition.

Assam Govt. Commerce & Industries additional chief secretary Ravi Capoor, in his inaugural address on NER(I)- CLMV countries, exhorted that the NE is closer to capitals of CLMV nations than the financial capital Mumbai by air. Connectivity- both physical & soft infrastructure connectivity remains one of the major obstacles in enhancing trade between India and CLMV countries and people to people connectivity including exchange of students, cultural programmes, tourism, education, media, among others are the need of the hour, and in this direction, India has been working on some important connectivity projects with ASEAN + 6 for sustainable development between India and CLMV, he said.

Lao PDR Ambassador in India Southam Sakonhninhom,  Vietnam Ambassador in India Ton Sinh Thanh, Myanmar Embassy Economic Advisor, Cambodia strategic trade & services advisor Sudhansu Pandey, Union commerce department GoI, Sikkim Govt Chief Secretary & HRDD Head G. P. Upadhyaya, Assam Govt additional (CS, planning & Dev) K. V. Eapen, among others, addressed.

Dr. A. Ibotombi Singh (OSD) RUSA, higher & technical education directorate, GoAP, presenting a talk on “Higher & technical education in NE India: An introspection of Arunachal Pradesh in the era of globalization and CLMV countries” in technical session, advocated students’ exchange programme and vocational training of teaching faculty between Arunachal Pradesh and CLMV nations, Nitin Kumar Tripathi (OSD,technical) H&TE directorate, GoAP presented a paper on ‘Higher education, herbal health & wellness in Arunachal Pradesh’, Banu Dai, RGGP herbal technology department head took part in technical session panel discussion & coordinated the cultural bonanza of the event.

Ngandam with dignitaries released ‘Vision document on education and skill development & capacity building’ on Saturday and distributed honour certificates to all participants of cultural bonanza based on herbal health & wellness industry on Friday evening.

Lao PDR Ambassador Southam Sakonhninhom assured to invite Ngandam leading a team of H&TE officers on a ‘strategic education tour to Lao PDR’ soon.

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